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Zimmermann overcomes fever to start home opener

WASHINGTON -- Right-hander Jordan Zimmermann was able to pitch the home opener against the Braves on Friday afternoon. His fever broke about 11 p.m. ET on Thursday, and he told manager Matt Williams that he felt 100 percent better than he felt earlier in the day.

Zimmermann was scheduled to pitch against the Mets on Thursday, but he was a late scratch because of the fever. Tanner Roark pitched instead and won his first game of the season, going six innings and allowing two runs in an 8-2 victory.

The Nationals re-evaluated Zimmermann before the start of Friday's game and declared him good to go.

Zimmermann pitched five strong innings in the Nats' 2-1 loss to the Braves, allowing one run on four hits and striking out nine. The run came courtesy of Evan Gattis' home run in the fifth inning.

"Health-wise, I feel a lot better today than I did yesterday," Zimmermann said. "Yesterday, it was rough. I got some fluids and some rest. I woke up this morning feeling pretty good. I called [Williams], and I was good to go. I was able to go five, and he thought that was enough."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also can be found on Twitter @WashingNats.
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