WASHINGTON -- Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman did not play in Monday's game against the Cubs because of abdominal soreness, according to manager Davey Johnson.

Zimmerman said he could play, but Johnson wasn't going to take a chance on Zimmerman reinjuring his abdominal area.

Zimmerman entered the game as a pinch-hitter with two outs in the seventh inning and worked a walk, then was lifted for pinch-runner Brian Bixler.

Earlier in the season, Zimmerman recovered from a torn abdominal muscle and missed more than two months of action. He underwent surgery in the area on May 3.

"Anything like that, I'm not taking a chance on him reinjuring that thing, so he is [in the dugout] with me," Johnson said. "I'm going to see how it goes. He is willing to hit. I think fielding, probably throwing, is a little more aggravating than hitting."

Zimmerman has played in 28 games and is 24-for-107 (.224), with three home runs and 13 RBIs for Washington.

Elbow bruise keeps Morse on Nats' bench

WASHINGTON -- After getting hit by a pitch on his left elbow on Saturday, Nationals first baseman Mike Morse didn't play in his second consecutive game.

At first, according to manager Davey Johnson, the Nationals thought the injury was serious. An X-ray revealed a hairline fracture, but then an MRI showed a serious bruise.

"All the soft tissue got mashed pretty good," Johnson said about Morse's elbow.

Johnson did not say when Morse will play his next game.