Nationals injury updates galore

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Several recovering players to report on this afternoon as the Nats and Marlins commence their series finale…

— Craig Stammen had surgery this morning to remove bone chips from his right elbow. The procedure went as planned, and Stammen was already reporting that he’s got more range of motion in his throwing arm than he did pre-surgery. He’ll still need six weeks to recover, so he won’t be back pitching this season. But the Nationals are encouraged that the injury wasn’t more severe and believe Stammen will be 100 percent healthy well in advance of spring training.

— Jordan Zimmermann has been back in the Nationals clubhouse this week, his right arm encased in a contraption that holds everything in place and doesn’t allow him to extend his elbow to 180 degrees. Zimmermann, who had Tommy John surgery, faces a long recovery. But he seems to be in pretty good spirits and sounds determined to get back on a big league mound at some point in 2010.

— Austin Kearns is also back with the team, but it doesn’t look like he’s going to make it back this season from surgery on his right thumb. Kearns isn’t yet able to swing a bat, and once he can, he’s going to need time to get comfortable facing live pitching again. The Nats won’t rule his season over quite yet, but unless he makes some serious strides in the next week, the Austin Kearns Era in D.C. appears over.

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Mark Zuckerman

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