VIERA, Fla. — Jordan Zimmermann had trouble with his fastball location. The St. Louis Cardinals had little difficulty finding his pitches.
Zimmermann allowed eight runs and nine hits in three innings Friday during the Washington Nationals’ 16-10 loss. He has given up 13 runs and 16 hits over nine innings in three spring training starts.
“I think about this time of spring training all pitchers go through a little dead arm, and I think he was a little dead-armed,” Nationals manager Davey Johnson said. “He got a little treatment afterward. Nothing I need to worry about.”
Zimmermann generally was happy with his offspeed pitches, except for a curveball he left up to Ronny Cedeno that resulted in an RBI single.
“That was a stupid pitch, but other than that, I threw some good curveballs that were in the dirt, and some good sliders,” Zimmermann said. “My fastball was just a little off the plate, and when I had to throw a strike, I was a little up, and you’re going to get crushed when that happens.”
Zimmermann, who threw 61 pitches, said he got a little tired, particularly in the third inning when the Cardinals had three doubles and scored six runs.
Matt Carpenter was 4 for 4 with two doubles and an RBI for St. Louis, which had 17 hits. Rob Johnson had two doubles and three RBIs, Cedeno also drove in three runs and Shane Robinson hit a grand slam off Nathan Karns.
Winner Shelby Miller, making his first spring training start, gave up two runs and three hits in three innings.
“He has the ability to pitch up in the zone, and the ball gets on hitters a little different with him than guys even throwing harder than him,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. “I thought he made some behind-in-the-count offspeed pitches today, which we really haven’t seen him do in the past. He’s making some good strides forward.”
Bryce Harper had a two-run triple for Washington, which scored seven runs in the ninth as Micah Owings led off with a home run against Keith Butler and Zach Walters added a two-run drive against Victor Marte.
The Cardinals’ Allen Craig had an RBI single after agreeing to a $31 million, five-year contract.
“This is a tremendous opportunity and I’m incredibly humbled by it,” he said. “It’s something I can’t really fathom at this moment. I’m just excited to be part of this team going forward.”
NOTES: Washington RHP Henry Rodriguez made his first appearance of spring training and retired the side on eight pitches in the sixth. Rodriguez had elbow surgery last August. ... Washington RHP Christian Garcia is expected to be examined by a team doctor to determine whether tightness in his right forearm/wrist has improved. Garcia would have to throw on flat ground before returning to the mound. ... Matheny, who has a ruptured disk, was awaiting results of X-rays on his back Thursday.
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