Zimmermann able to use entire arsenal

Zimmermann able to use entire arsenal

VIERA, Fla. -- The Nationals are not scheduled to play the Tigers during the regular season, and that gave right-hander Jordan Zimmermann the comfort of treating Wednesday's game more like a regular-season start. He did not have to worry about revealing too much to opposing hitters before the games begin to matter.

"You definitely want to face a couple of American League teams," he said. "These guys aren't going to see us and we're not going to see them. It's good not having to hold anything back and just go right after him."

Zimmermann allowed one run on two hits while striking out four in 2 2/3 innings in his second Grapefruit League start during Washington's 9-2 victory. He threw 47 pitches, 33 for strikes.

Zimmermann was also sharp in his first Grapefruit League start against the Braves, tossing a pair of scoreless innings. The caveat is Atlanta is a National League East foe he will almost certainly face numerous times throughout the season. On Wednesday, Zimmermann was able to work on his entire arsenal without worry.

"I was attacking, trying to get ahead with the fastball," Zimmermann said. "The last outing, I wasn't able to do that, but this one for the most part, it was where I wanted it to be. Threw a couple good sliders, a 3-2 curveball that was good, and for the most part getting stronger and getting better."

Jamal Collier is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.