The Washington Nationals returned from rehab assignment and reinstated first baseman Ryan Zimmerman and catcher Jose Lobaton on Saturday. Right-handed pitcher A.J. Cole and catcher Pedro Severino were optioned to Triple-A Syracuse. Nationals President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Mike Rizzo made the announcement.
Zimmerman, 31, returns to the Nationals' active roster after missing 16 games with a left wrist contusion. The veteran first baseman, who was hit by a pitch on the wrist on July 31 in San Francisco, hit .500 in three rehab games with Triple-A Syracuse this week, going 6-for-12 with a triple, a home run, a walk, three RBI and three runs scored.
Zimmerman is hitting .222 this season in the Major Leagues, with 27 extra-base hits in 80 games (12 home runs, 14 doubles, one triple). Twelve of his 38 RBI have put the Nationals ahead and seven have stood up as game-winners.
Lobaton, 31, rejoins the Nationals after missing 27 games with left elbow tendonitis. In three games with Triple-A Syracuse this week, Lobaton hit .385 (5-for-13) with an RBI, a walk, a stolen base and one run scored. The veteran catcher has started 22 games behind the plate for the Nationals this season, going 13-for-67 (.194) with one double, one triple, three home runs, 10 walks, and six RBI as a starter. He is 1-for-5 off the bench.
Cole was recalled for his first Major League stint of the season on August 19, but he did not appear in a game. The right-hander is 8-8 with a 4.26 ERA in 22 starts for Triple-A Syracuse this year.
Severino, 23, hit .467 (7-for-15) in six games for the Nationals during his most recent stint with the Major League team. Severino clubbed the first home run of his Major League career on Aug. 17 at Colorado, becoming just the fourth player in Nationals history (2005-present) to collect his first MLB home run as a pinch hitter (per STATS, LLC). He joined Jeff Kobernus, Kory Casto and Justin Maxwell on that list.