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Uh-oh: What's up with Zimmermann?

Aug 8, 2009, 7:02 PM EDT

Potentially bad news coming out of Washington.

Rookie Jordan Zimmermann has been on the disabled list due to soreness in
his pitching elbow since July 19, which was concerning enough, but on
Saturday afternoon the Nationals announced that they were sending the
results of a second MRI to Dr. James Andrews.

Naturally, anytime you
hear elbow and Dr. James Andrews in the same sentence, it’s not a good
thing:


“There was some concerning facts on the MRI that was read by our team
Dr. Wiemi Douoguih,” interim GM Mike Rizzo said. “We’ve sent the films
over to Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, who is going to read them
Monday and we’ll have a more definitive answer on Monday where Jordan
is with his elbow.”

Rizzo couldn’t elaborate about what Dr. Douoguih saw, but it’s
clearly of great concern for the organization. Rizzo said his concern
about Zimmermann is “ramped up.”

The 3-5 record and 4.63 ERA might not show it, but the 23-year-old
right-hander has managed a pretty nice rookie season,
compiling 9.1 K/9 and a 92/29 K/BB ratio in 91 1/3 innings. What I find
most encouraging about his long-term potential is the fact that he
pitched that well with the league’s worst defense behind him, suffering through an unlucky 67.5% strand rate and .339 BABIP. If we
were to take defense out of the equation, he actually pitched to a 3.57 FIP. Hopefully he can still realize that potential. 

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