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Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman set to begin rehab assignment at Class-A Potomac

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WASHINGTON - Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman, recovering from a broken right thumb, is set to begin a rehab assignment with the club's Class-A farm team in Potomac, Virginia.

Zimmerman will serve as the designated hitter Friday night.

Washington manager Matt Williams said Zimmerman is close to returning and could play third base, first base and/or left field at Potomac.

Zimmerman was placed on the 15-day disabled list April 13 after breaking his thumb while diving back into second base on a pickoff attempt the day before. He has missed 41 games.

Washington (25-27) had lost six of seven before opening a three-game interleague series with the Texas Rangers on Friday night. The Nationals had scored 19 runs and hit .127 with runners in scoring position during the seven-game stretch.

Zimmerman was hitting .364 with two homers and six RBIs in 10 games before the injury.

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