Washington Nationals right-hander Jordan Zimmermann, who has emerged in 2013 as a top-flight starter and earned his first All-Star berth, will miss the game because of persistent neck problems, it was announced Friday.
That news came after he pitched well again Thursday but didn't get much offensive help as the Philadelphia Phillies edged the Nationals 3-1.
The neck has been bothering Zimmermann for a while in various ways. Washington's medical staff and the pitcher can't seem to get the pain under control, and he had an MRI and X-ray to determine the severity of the injury.
Zimmermann still will be able to participate in All-Star activities but not play in the game.
"I'd rather be healthy for the second half than pitch in that," Zimmermann said in The Washington Post. "I'd like to pitch in it, but I'm not going to go up there and pitch an inning and have to battle in the second half."
Zimmermann, 27, has a 12-4 record with a 2.58 ERA and 95 strikeouts in 132 1/3 innings this season.