Ryan Zimmerman was healthy enough for the Nationals to put him on the NLDS roster, so why didn’t he start any games against the Giants? Well, because he wasn’t actually healthy.
Zimmerman, who was out for two months with a hamstring injury and also battled chronic shoulder problems all season, told Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post that he was “hurt enough not to play.”
He was used as a pinch-hitter in every game, but never stayed in to play defense and was pinch-run for following his only hit of the series in Game 2.
His future position has been a constant topic of debate in Washington for a while now because of various injuries and Kilgore writes that Zimmerman “will likely move to first base next season, assuming the Nationals allow Adam LaRoche to leave via free agency.”
Before the shoulder problems Zimmerman was an excellent defensive third baseman and he played exclusively third base from 2006-2013 while logging nearly 10,000 innings there. He’s signed through 2018 at an average of $15 million per season.
Braves 21-year-old outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. nabbed his 30th stolen base of the season on Friday, becoming the second-youngest player in Major League history to produce at least 30 home runs and 30 stolen bases in a single season. Per MLB Stats, the only other player under 22 years old to pull off the feat is Mike Trout, who did so with 30 home runs and 49 stolen bases during his age-20 season in 2012.
Acuña’s triumphant moment came in the eighth inning of Friday’s game against the Mets. He drew a six-pitch walk against righty reliever Seth Lugo, then waited for an opportune moment as Ozzie Albies stepped to the plate. Lugo fired a 93-m.p.h. fastball to Albies for ball no. 2, which was promptly returned to second base by catcher Wilson Ramos. The throw came in high, however; Amed Rosario had to jump to make the catch, allowing Acuña to slide safely into the bag and hit his career mark.
It’s been an eventful season for the All-Star outfielder, whose 36 home runs and 30 stolen bases helps pad a .294/.377/.536 batting line and 5.1 fWAR over 597 plate appearances. Through the first 11 innings of Friday’s contest, he went 0-for-3 with a pair of walks and a stolen base.