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Posted at 07:29 PM ET, 08/02/2012

Jordan Zimmermann becomes third Nationals pitcher to be named NL pitcher of the month


(GARY CAMERON - REUTERS)
Jordan Zimmermann was named the National League’s Pitcher of the Month for July – yet another reward for a Nationals pitcher this season. He becomes the third different Nationals pitcher recognized with the award this season, the first time since the 1979 Astros accomplished the same feat.

Stephen Strasburg earned the award in April and Gio Gonzalez received it May. But on a staff with those two all-stars, Zimmermann has been the most consistent and, perhaps, the best.

Zimmermann has had as dominant a past month as any pitcher in baseball, posting a 4-0 record and a major league-leading 0.97 ERA in six starts in July. He also led the National League in walks and hits allowed per inning (0.84 WHIP) and was tied for the lead in wins for the month. In 37 innings this month, he allowed a measly four earned runs. He has done this while battling some recent shoulder tightness.

Zimmermann leads the Nationals in several major pitching categories: the Nationals’ lowest ERA (2.28), most innings pitched (134 1/3 innings) and lowest WHIP (1.065). He has pitched at least six innings in his past 21 starts — now the longest streak in baseball after Justin Verlander’s streak was snapped in a rain-shortened game on Tuesday.

The Nationals lead the majors in lowest team ERA (3.29) and lowest for a starting rotation (3.21).

Ryan Zimmerman, who put together one of the best hitting months in baseball in July, was beat out by Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen for the NL’s Player of the Month award.

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