The Washington Nationals have been plagued with injury after injury since spring training. They might be dealing with their biggest injury yet as Ryan Zimmerman was sent for an MRI on Tuesday night.
After experiencing inflammation in his shoulder on Saturday, Zimmerman rested for three days and was expected to return to the lineup on Tuesday against the San Diego Padres.
On Sunday morning he said that he did not "see any reason right now why I won't play Tuesday." However, he was left out of the lineup because he still felt pain when he swung a bat.
Amanda Comak tweeted that manager Davey Johnson said the Nationals fear Zimmerman's dealing with a strain that could keep him out at least a week, but are still hoping for the best.
Johnson seemed worried later on when he spoke of Zimmerman, saying, "I don't have a good feeling, I mean, he's had three days off...Hopefully it's nothing serious. We'll know after the MRI."
There sounds to be nothing positive coming from the manager of the Nats in this situation. Johnson seems to be as pessimistic as he was with the injury to Michael Morse.
The consensus is that the injury is likely a join issue opposed to a structural issue.
A lot weighs on the results of his MRI. The Nats might be lucky that they started so hot this season because they will struggle a bit without Morse and Zimmerman on the field for an extended period of time.
In the meantime, Steve Lombardozzi will take over at third base. As the lineup begins to weaken more due to injuries, the Nats might be thinking about Bryce Harper sometime very soon.