Nationals right-hander Jordan Zimmermann, who was scratched from yesterday’s start with what the team called flu-like symptoms, is recovered enough to start today against the Braves.
Tanner Roark took Zimmermann’s place yesterday and tossed six innings of two-run ball in an 8-2 victory over the Mets. It’s unclear exactly what the Nationals’ plan was if Zimmermann weren’t able to pitch today, but manager Matt Williams hinted that he may have gone with a “bullpen game” using an assortment of relievers rather than changing Taylor Jordan’s schedule to make him the fill-in starter.
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The Cubs’ bullpen got into trouble in the ninth inning on Tuesday afternoon during the first game of a doubleheader. Justin Wilson started the inning with the Cubs leading 3-2, normally a situation for closer Brandon Morrow. Wilson issued a leadoff walk to Austin Barnes, then gave up a single to Justin Turner. Morrow wasn’t warming up, curiously. Wilson ended up giving up a go-ahead two-run double to pinch-hitter Kyle Farmer and the Cubs went on to lose 4-3.
We now know why Morrow wasn’t available. He says his back tightened up taking off his pants early Monday morning, MLB.com’s Carrie Muskat reports. Morrow said, “It’s frustrating any time you can’t get out there, especially when you can’t go for something as stupid as taking your pants off.”
Morrow, 33, has been terrific in the closer’s role this season for the Cubs. He owns a 1.59 ERA with a 25/9 K/BB ratio in 22 2/3 innings. He is also not available for the back end of Tuesday’s doubleheader, but it sounds like he won’t need to go on the disabled list.