A lot of the All-Star Game chatter concerning the Nationals this year will be focused on Bryce Harper - and for good reason. It makes sense given the context of the scenario, his age, and the debate of whether or not he should be hitting in the Home Run Derby. But all of that aside, I think people need to shine a little more light on Jordan Zimmermann's first game as an All-Star.
He's bounced back from Tommy John surgery and could be a No. 1 starter on a majority of teams in Major League Baseball. He's been a reliable workhorse whose win count keeps getting higher as the days pass by and he seems to have found a steady groove. To know that he'll be on the mound every five days is something I've come to look forward to.
Here's the thing though: Zimmermann's never been much of a spotlight kind of guy. I remember one time we did an interview at Nationals Park as part of the new uniform fashion show the year they unveiled the current curly W-centric jerseys. He was soft-spoken but confident, not too chatty, but made for a good conversation partner. His demeanor off the field matches his demeanor on the field, only he has a Zen-like focus when he takes the mound. You can see it in his eyes if you look for it.
Zimmermann was dominant when he appeared in the 2012 playoffs and I'm glad that baseball fans watching that series versus St. Louis got to see him work. That's why I think this All-Star Game appearance can do nothing but good things for Zimmermann.
Here he is American League. Get ready for a show.
Rachel Levitin blogs about the Nationals for We Love DC, and will be sharing her observations about baseball in the nation's capital as part of MASNsports.com's season-long initiative of welcoming guest bloggers to our little corner of cyberspace. All opinions expressed are those of the guest bloggers, who are not employed by MASNsports.com but are just as passionate about their baseball as our roster of writers.