PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Washington Nationals right-hander Doug Fister left a minor league start after one inning Thursday with a strain of the latissimus dorsi muscle on the right side of his back and may not be able to take his first turn in the rotation on April 6.
Fister, who missed time earlier in spring training because of elbow inflammation, will be examined by team physician Dr. Wiemi Douoguih on Friday in Washington.
"It certainly is a setback," manager Matt Williams said.
Acquired from the Detroit during the offseason, Fister was hoping to be ready for the April 6 game at home against Atlanta. Williams said that is uncertain.
"He came back fairly quickly from the elbow inflammation," Williams said. "It's a little early to tell right now."
Also Thursday, Washington third baseman Ryan Zimmerman was a late scratch from the lineup due what Williams called a stomach issue. Zimmerman was on the field with the team before the game and is expected to play Saturday.
The Nationals also said they had optioned left-hander Xavier Cedeno, outfielder Jeff Kobernus, right-hander Ryan Mattheus and first baseman Ted Moore to Syracuse of the Triple-A International League and catcher Sandy Leon to Harrisburg of the Double-A Eastern League.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.