Zimmerman sits out for third straight game

Zimmerman sits out for third straight game

PHILADELPHIA -- As a precaution, the Nationals decided not to start third baseman Ryan Zimmerman for the third consecutive game because of a tight left hamstring injury.

Before Wednesday's game against the Phillies, manager Jim Riggleman said there was a possibility Zimmerman could pinch-hit.

For the first time since Saturday, Zimmerman was able to take hitting and fielding practice Wednesday. It appears he didn't have any problems doing both. He did not participate in any running drills, which he hopes to do Thursday.

"I'm not sure how close he is to 100 percent, but we would like to get him real close before we put him back out there," Riggleman said.

Zimmerman said the hamstring is getting better and he hasn't taken an MRI. He also is not sure if he could pinch-hit.

"We haven't had any test or anything done [on the hamstring]. It's nothing crazy. We'll see how it feels today," Zimmerman said."There is no point in pinch-hitting if I can't score on a single."