In seven games last week, four at home in Washington against the Atlanta Braves and three with Chicago’s Cubs in Wrigley Field, Ryan Zimmerman was 10 for 21 (.476/.538/1.048) with three doubles and three home runs, four doubles, and five Ks. Not bad. Not bad.
Zimmerman was named the National League’s Player of the Week on Monday afternoon, and he drove in the Nationals’ first run of the game with an RBI double in the top of the second inning of the series opener with the St. Louis Cardinals (just don’t ask how that game ended, we’re staying positive for a few paragraphs).
Before the first of four in Busch Stadium, Nats’ skipper Davey Martinez talked to reporters about having the 33-year-old healthy and producing as part of the lineup after Zimmerman missed 58 games between May 9th and July 20th with an oblique injury.
“Zim knows Zim,” Martinez said, “and when he’s healthy he knows what he can do, and to have him healthy and feeling as good as he does right now, it’s good for our organization, good for the players around him, I mean, he’s had an unbelievable week and let’s hope he continues to do that and play the way he’s capable of playing.”
The highlight of Zimmerman’s week, (if we’re going to pick just one since he did go 3 for 5 with two doubles and a home run against the Braves too), was a 2 for 3, two home run, six RBI game against the Cubbies in the second of three in the Windy City.
Zimmerman took lefty Jon Lester deep twice in that game, the only one the Nationals won in the series, connecting for his eighth and ninth home runs of the 2018 campaign.
Martinez talked after the big game by his first baseman about the leadership Zimmerman provides and he how does it quietly but makes an impact.
“For me he’s a quiet leader, he really is,” Martinez explained. “When he needs to be vocal, he [is], in a very private setting. He doesn’t say much, but when he does say something, the guys take it to heart, and they respect him a lot, I respect him a lot, and he’s a big part of our success.”
Heading into the series opener in St. Louis, Zimmerman was 17 for 48 (.354/.439/.729) with six doubles and four home runs in 15 games since returning from the DL stint, and as noted Nationals’ pregame notes for the game with the Cardinals, since the All-Star Break, Zim was ranked second among all NL hitters in SLG (.729) and OPS (1.168), and third in RBIs (18), with the 10th-highest batting average (.354) in the National League over that stretch.
Zimmerman finished last night’s opener with the Cards 1 for 3 with the double and two Ks, leaving him with a .259/.330/.506 line, 10 doubles, and nine home runs in 185 PAs on the season, over which he’s been worth 0.7 fWAR.