Nationals

Quick Links

Zimmerman '100 percent' after swinging

683214.png

Zimmerman '100 percent' after swinging

Ryan Zimmerman took 30 full swings off soft-toss pitching this morning and emerged with his injured right shoulder feeling 100 percent, leaving the Nationals third baseman on track to come off the disabled list Tuesday.

There's still a minuscule chance Zimmerman could return to the lineup for tomorrow night's series finale against the Phillies if he feels great after a full pregame workout tomorrow. But the 27-year-old understands the safer course is probably to wait until Tuesday's road trip opener in Pittsburgh.

"Unless I come out tomorrow and feel just unbelievable and feel absolutely nothing, there'd be a chance," he said. "But it's kind of silly to rush and do it tomorrow. ... It would be a shame if we didn't wait one more day and messed it up. We have an extra day on Monday. That works in nice and gives me an extra day to get more swings. I would say Tuesday."

Having missed the last two weeks with inflammation of the AC joint in his right shoulder, Zimmerman resumed swinging yesterday, first hitting off a tee. He did that again today, then progressed to soft-toss. The only remaining step is to take a full round of batting practice off a live pitcher.

"Nothing hurt yesterday, but it felt way better today than it did yesterday," he said. "Whenever you come back from something, you're a little cautious at first. I was pretty much 100 percent today swinging at flips, and it felt fine."

Zimmerman, who believes he suffered this injury after multiple diving attempts in the field, said he won't take any extra precautions once he returns to ensure it doesn't happen again.

"Not unless you want me to stop diving for balls," he said. "These things are just things that happen. If you play enough games and are fortunate enough to be up here, you're going to get hurt. Unfortunately, I had to miss some time. Sometimes you can play through them, sometimes you can't. I think if it was August or September, it would be a different story. But it's better this way. It was frustrating, but it was the right thing to do."

Quick Links

Whoa. Dusty Baker not returning as Nationals' manager. What comes next?

usatsi_9347711.jpg

Whoa. Dusty Baker not returning as Nationals' manager. What comes next?

The Washington Nationals announced Friday Dusty Baker will not return as manager of the club in 2018. 

Baker led the team to the first back-to-back division titles in franchise history, and the Nationals were 192-132 under Baker, but they failed to make it to an NLCS.

Baker is 14th in MLB history with 1,863 career wins.

The next Nationals' manager will be their seventh since they arrived in DC.

Only the Marlins have had as many.

"I'm surprised and disappointed," Baker told USA TODAY Sports. "They told me they would get back to me and I told them I was leaving town yesterday and they waited 10 days to tell me."

"I really thought this was my best year. We won at least 95 games each year and won the division back to back years but they said they wanted to go a different direction. It's hard to understand." 

The team also announced the contracts for the Major League coaching staff have also expired, and the search for a new manager will begin immediately.

RELATED: BRYCE HARPER THANKS NATIONALS' FANS FOR SUPPORT

Quick Links

Nationals second baseman Daniel Murphy undergoes successful knee surgery

usatsi_10342102.jpg

Nationals second baseman Daniel Murphy undergoes successful knee surgery

While Nats fans were still digesting the news that Dusty Baker will not return as manager next year, the team released some more surprising news. 

Second baseman Daniel Murphy underwent knee surgery today, per an official team report. 

Washington Post reporter Chelsea Janes reported that the surgery is considered significant and the team won't put a timeline on the recovery process:

"The procedure, according to the statement released by the team, repaired articular cartilage in Murphy’s right knee. For those interested in the details, it was a debridement and microfracture surgery, and orthopedic surgeon Timothy Kremchek performed it."

"For those concerned with the implications of the procedure, those are still unclear. The statement clarified that Murphy’s rehab “will progress throughout the offseason,” as one would hope, and did not include a timetable.

RELATED: HARPER THANKS FANS FOR SUPPORT