NEW YORK -- Nationals manager Davey Johnson decided not to start second baseman Danny Espinosa against the Mets even though Espinosa took batting practice without any problems on Friday afternoon.
Johnson said he would like Espinosa to have a full workout -- hitting and fielding -- before putting him back into the lineup. Espinosa has missed the last three games with a sore right hand. He most likely will play Saturday afternoon against the Mets after having the workout in front of Johnson. Espinosa hurt the hand after being hit by a pitch thrown by Braves left-hander Paul Maholm.
"[The hand] is going to be painful for a while," Espinosa said. "It's a bone bruise. It's right on the skin. There is no meat around it. ... My hand strength and my wrist feel a lot better."
Espinosa, who is known to be an iron horse since he entered the big leagues, said he was bored the last three days because he couldn't hit or take fielding practice.
"They didn't want me to do anything," Espinosa said. "I just sat in the training room from 2 p.m. to 7p.m. So I was getting bored sitting in the trainer's room."
Zim out of lineup, but hamstring cramp not serious
NEW YORK -- Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman had the day off Friday because of a left hamstring cramp. Zimmerman, who is expected to play Saturday afternoon, said the injury is not considered serious.
"Zimmerman is still having a little problem with it," manager Davey Johnson said. "It's going to be a cool night. If I play him tonight, I'll be taking a chance. He'll definitely play tomorrow. Let's try to nip it in the bud with him."
Zimmerman started having hamstring problems during the weekend series against the Braves, but he didn't complain until Wednesday against the Marlins, when he was taken out of the game in the seventh inning.
"At some point, you have to decide whether you want to take it easy and make it a one-game thing or try to push it," Zimmerman said. "Early in the year, [it's] kind of stupid [to push it]. We'll see how it feels."
• Johnson is hopeful that catcher Wilson Ramos can come off the disabled list by the time his 15 days are up. Johnson is not sure if Ramos will have a rehab assignment. Ramos is on the DL because of a left hamstring strain.
• Right-hander Christian Garcia has yet to throw off a mound, but is feeling OK, according to Johnson. Garcia is on the 15-day disabled list because of a right forearm tendon strain.
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.