Ryan Zimmerman Back at Third as Nationals Look For Series Win


Apr 4, 2014; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman (11) doubles against the Atlanta Braves during the fourth inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

After taking a few days off to try to reduce swelling in his arthritic right shoulder, Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman is back in the lineup for Wednesday night’s game against the Marlins in which he will play third base for the first time since Saturday. The Nationals are encouraging  Zimmerman to make more side arm throws as if he were doing his patented bare-handed charging play, as doing so causes less stress to his shoulder.

Zimmerman, who had surgery on the shoulder in the fall of 2012, already has two throwing errors on the season, one of which proved costly in a loss to the Braves last Saturday. By focusing more on sidearm throws, the hope is that Zimmerman will not only be pain-free and become more accurate with his throws across the diamond, but also that he will be able to stay healthy and remain the team’s third baseman for the remainder of the season.

"“We are trying to take a little pressure off of it, so we could get a different slot so he feels comfortable,” manager Matt Williams told MLB.com’s Bill Ladson. “It’s a little less stressful to be down there [as opposed to throwing overhand].”"

While it may take some time to change the way he has played throughout his entire career, Zimmerman will likely begin throwing side arm on a regular basis in the very near future and has already been practicing before tonight’s game against the Fish.

We won’t have to wait long to find out when Zimmerman will implement his new throwing style as he is in the lineup for tonight’s game against the Marlins, who will send left-hander Brad Hand to the mound. Hand will pitch in place of Jacob Turner who was scratched with a strained right shoulder.

The Nationals will counter with right-hander Jordan Zimmermann who looks to keep the momentum going from his strong season debut against the Braves on Friday, in which he gave up just one run on four hits while striking out nine in five innings of work.

Here are the lineups for today’s game:


Span CF

Rendon 2B

Werth RF

LaRoche 1B

Zimmerman 3B

Desmond SS

Harper LF

Lobaton C

Zimmermann P


Yelich LF

Dietrich 2B

Stanton RF

Jones 1B

Mcgehee 3B

Saltalamacchia C

Ozuna CF

Hechavarria SS

Hand P