May 28, 2014; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman (11) stands outside of the batting cage prior to the game against the Miami Marlins at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Ryan Zimmerman will be utility player for Nationals


Shortly after declaring himself ready to be a left fielder for the Nationals, it looks like Ryan Zimmerman will be playing that and a whole lot more. While he rehabs his broken right thumb, Zimmerman will play at three positions.

Zimmerman had said that he feels that he would be a greater commodity as a left fielder than a first baseman. The initial and popular theory was that Zimmerman would be placed opposite the hot corner to reduce the stress on his arm, which has been a degrading problem over the last two years. Bill Ladson of MLB.com details Zimmerman’s rehab game plan but doesn’t know where he will end up playing.

Once he starts, Zimmerman most likely will be a designated hitter for a couple of games. After that, he could play third base, left field or first base. Zimmerman is going to play all three positions once he returns to the big league level, the source confirmed.

Zimmerman feels that his biggest problem is going to be getting his swing back, saying that his natural athletic ability would lend to any position on the field. The long-time third baseman has been working with manager Matt Williams on fly ball routes and had a few rounds at first base during Spring Training. It was reported that Zimmerman looked fairly natural out in left field, even smooth at points.

The 29-year old has played third base for his entire career, save for a few games at shortstop during his rookie year. He earned a Gold Glove at the position in 2009, also his only year as an All-Star, but has been suffering from severe arm control and strength problems.

Tags: Washington Nationals