WASHINGTON -- After more than a week of treatment and throwing sessions to test his neck, Nationals ace Max Scherzer finally has a date on which he will be activated from the disabled list. He will return to the rotation Monday night at Nationals Park against the Marlins, after missing
WASHINGTON -- After more than a week of treatment and throwing sessions to test his neck, Nationals ace Max Scherzer finally has a date on which he will be activated from the disabled list. He will return to the rotation Monday night at Nationals Park against the Marlins, after missing just one turn through the rotation.
Perhaps, Scherzer could have been ready to start one of the team's games during Sunday's split doubleheader against the Mets, but the Nationals opted to bring up their No. 3 prospect, Erick Fedde, instead to start along with right-hander Tanner Roark. The move prevents Roark and Scherzer from being lined up to pitch on the same day moving forward.
All signs have pointed to Scherzer's left neck inflammation being behind him. He played catch Saturday afternoon, a day after he tested his neck during a bullpen session. After he spoke with manager Dusty Baker on Saturday, the team decided his return would come Monday, also giving him an extra day of rest after working vigorously during the past few days to try and get back.
Now Scherzer, who had never had a mid-season stint on the disabled list and has grown antsy over the past few days, will be set to return and continue a season that has made him one of the favorites for the National League Cy Young Award.
Zimmerman feels better, but out of starting lineup
First baseman Ryan Zimmerman did not sound concerned about what he revealed was a left triceps injury that kept him out of the starting lineup for a second consecutive game Saturday. Zimmerman said his triceps was sore Friday night, but he did hit in the cage during the game and believes he could have pinch-hit if necessary.
Even though Zimmerman (aka "Zim" for Players Weekend) said he felt much better Saturday, Baker decided to keep him out of the lineup for a second consecutive game, knowing he will need him to play in at least one game during Sunday's doubleheader.
"It feels way better than it did yesterday," Zimmerman said. "It felt like a muscle, almost like if you work out too hard and you're sore the next day."
Update on Werth/Turner rehab stints
With Class A Advanced Potomac scheduled to play Saturday night, Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth and shortstop Trea Turner were around Nationals Park during the afternoon to work out and take batting practice on the field before leaving for their rehab assignment there.
In five games in the Minors, Werth is hitting 3-for-11 with two walks, although he is much more concerned with getting himself back into playing shape after he has been sidelined for nearly three months with a fracture in his left foot.
"At this point, the legs are probably going to be the last thing to come because I was off for so long," Werth said.
Turner is still working on his timing at the plate, where he is 0-for-14 with five strikeouts and one walk as he works his way back from a fractured right wrist.
"He's looking good and doing good," Werth said. "He hasn't been out that long, but with wrist injuries, the last thing to come is the strength. As he gets stronger and time goes on, I think he'll be better and he'll be ok."
The Nationals have not set a timeline for how long their rehab assignments are scheduled to last, but Baker was supposed to speak with both players for updates on their progress before they left for their game Saturday.
"I don't know how close they are, but I'll talk to them," Baker said. "I don't want them back struggling; I'd like them back kind of near the top. I don't know if you can expect them to be at the top of their game, but near the top of their game."
Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier.