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Shoulders, simulated games, and the Series

Here's your Zimmerman update.

Around 6 p.m. or so, Zimmerman was scheduled to be examined by team orthopedist Dr. Ben Shaffer. It was nothing super-complicated, Zimmerman explained before the exam -- "no machines or anything." Still, the check-up might provide some answers for when Zimmerman can return. For the last week, since landing on the DL, Zimmerman has simply rested his shoulder. Only today has a doctor finally looked at it.

At least for now, Zimmerman thinks he can get back in the lineup -- though he can't estimate when -- without surgery. He even sounds reluctant to have surgery after the season.

This afternoon, he resumed some light shoulder exercises with team trainer Lee Kuntz.

"I mean a lot of people have [the small labral tear] and play with it anyway," Zimmerman said. "As long as it's not your throwing shoulder, and as long as your labrum is not torn, there's really no need to fix it. If you can rehab it, get it strong. A lot of guys usually will play with it and at the end of the season they'll rehab it and rest it and get it right. I mean, there's a lot of guys who have it in their non-throwing shoulder that play for years afterwards. ...

"I wouldn't say we're out of the clear yet. I haven't even picked up a bat. But I'm optimistic after what I felt today. And we'll see what happens."

---

Miscellany

* Looks like Ronnie Belliard will rejoin the team for the Pittsburgh series. And he'll get the chance to play a lot. Especially with Zimmerman out and Felipe Lopez dogging it regularly, just about begging to be benched. Still, Belliard will have to swing the batter better than he's done in Harrisburg while rehabbing. (He went 0-for-12.)

* Ryan Wagner threw another simulated game today. "He had a little blister on his finger that was bothering him, couldn't throw the ball over the plate, struggled a little," Manager Manny Acta said. "This one wasn't so good. But it was just lack of control. No pain or nothing."

* Noted NBA fan Aaron Boone's take on the Celts-Lakers: (He provided this analysis in the uber-broadcaster's voice, enunciating every word. Sometimes with flair.) "One thing we tend to do in sports and in your business especially is that we get very emotional day-to-day in the goings on. Boston held court for their own serve, and everyone thinks the series is over. Until LA wins the next game. And then wins the next game. And then of course -- because if they win those two, they're gonna win Game 5 -- and then they have ALL the momentum, so they're going to steal a game on the road. Because they will bring the purple and yellow thundersticks, mix them into the crowd, and that will intimidate the green ones. It's the postseason of the home-court advantage. The question is, can somebody STEAL -- " and here, he pauses to make those hand-signal quote marks " -- one on the road?"

By Chico Harlan  |  June 9, 2008; 7:14 PM ET
 
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Next: Bound for Pittsburgh: a team in the pits

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