Ryan Zimmerman re-injures 'ticking time bomb' of a right foot

Josh Luckenbaugh
July 22, 2019 - 9:25 am

Ryan Zimmerman's right foot already cost him two months of the 2019 season. And after another setback, that foot may force him to miss quite a few more games. 

Zimmerman limped off in the second inning of the Nationals' 7-1 loss against the Braves Sunday night, Nats manager Dave Martinez telling reporters the injury was related to the plantar fasciitis which Zimmerman has dealt with all season. 

Zimmerman is set to undergo an MRI on Monday, and Jesse Dougherty says Nats fans should expect the 34-year-old first baseman to miss some time. 

"The fact it's related to the injury that kept him out for two months is not encouraging at all," Dougherty told The Sports Junkies Monday morning. "I'm not going to pull the trigger and say he's out for the season, but it would indicate that he would miss some more time."

"That said, we could show up today and the MRI results were good and he's back and they're just gonna have to ease him back into the lineup, maybe lower his workload a bit. But what really got me is that yesterday, he was jogging down the line, he thought he was out, he noticed that Josh Donaldson dove so he decided to speed up and sprint, and that's when his foot started feeling bad." 

"So to me it seems like that's just a ticking time bomb. It was only a matter of one of these days that it was gonna flare up for him again. It doesn't seem to say he'll be able to keep playing until this thing really gets resolved."

And with Zimmerman possibly heading back to the injured list, will the Nats now try to add another bat ahead of the July 31 trade deadline? Washington, as has been well-documented, already has a need for more bullpen arms. 

"It's interesting because given how much this team wants bullpen help and is adamant about that, and how close they are to the competitive balance tax threshold and they don't want to go over that and they don't have a lot of wiggle room, it seems like they're only going to make one, maximum two moves this deadline," said Dougherty. 

"I've thought for a while they really could use another utility infielder, a stronger bench beyond Adrian Sanchez and Wilmer Difo, sort of this rotating cast of guys they've brought through when injuries occur. And now that need could be even more magnified ... if Ryan Zimmerman does go to the IL."

However, there is a familiar face now available who wouldn't cost the Nats anything to bring in and replace Zimmerman on the roster. In fact, he's done it before. 

"Mark Reynolds was just DFA'd by the Colorado Rockies, so he's out there and available," Dougherty told the Junkies. "He was pretty good with the Nats last season." 

"He's a power-hitting first baseman, can just provide a role similar to Zimmerman and platoon with (Matt) Adams, mix in with (Howie) Kendrick, and really could be a piece until Ryan gets back."

The Nats already brought back one player in Adams to share time at first base with Zimmerman, so it's not far-fetched to picture them signing another in Reynolds with Zimmerman ailing again. 

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