Zimmerman feeling good since return

Zimmerman feeling good since return

CINCINNATI -- Three days off the disabled list and Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman is slowly feeling like he's finding his groove.

Zimmerman went 3-for-12 in the three games at Pittsburgh, collecting one hit in each of the games against the Pirates at PNC Park. Inflammation in his right shoulder got Zimmerman off to a slow start -- he's hitting just .229 heading into Friday night's game against the Reds at Great American Ball Park -- but he's confident that average will soon rise.

"I had some good at-bats the first three games, and hit the ball pretty well," said Zimmerman. "It takes a few games to get back in there. I'm just happy to be back in there and not watching it anymore."

Coming to a ballpark with the reputation of being hitter-friendly can help a player find that groove a little quicker.

"It's like playing in Philly and parks like that; you don't try to do too much," said Zimmerman. "You know that you just have to put a good swing on the ball and good things will happen. The bigger parks play into that notion of trying to do too much. You still have to hit the ball and have a good at-bat, but if you hit a ball well here, you usually get rewarded."

Zimmerman is one run shy of reaching 500 for his career, and career hit No. 1,000 is just 37 away.