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Posted at 06:31 PM ET, 05/22/2012

Ryan Zimmerman scratched, Chad Tracy to play

(Al Behrman - AP)
The Nationals scratched third baseman Ryan Zimmerman about 45 minutes before tonight’s first pitch because of a “manager’s decision,” a team spokesman said. Zimmerman could be available to pinch-hit, the spokesman said. Chad Tracy will play third base and bat third with Zimmerman out.

Zimmerman missed 13 games on the disabled list with inflammation in the AC joint of his right shoulder. Since returning May 8, Zimmerman has hit .273/.365/.364 with one homer, which he hit Saturday, and two doubles in 63 plate appearances. Last night, Zimmerman went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts.

The Nationals labeled one other scratch this year a “manager’s decision,” in Los Angeles on April 29 with Jayson Werth. It turned out Werth missed the game with a migraine headache and returned for the Nationals’ next game.

For tonight, we only know that Tracy will get a surprise start on his 32nd birthday.

By  |  06:31 PM ET, 05/22/2012

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