The Phils will continue their two-series road show with a three-game visit to Washington, D.C. to face the presently first place Nationals. The first game of the series will be played at Nationals Park and will start at 7:05 pm EDT.
The Phils (13-13, 4th) have just finished a three-game series with the Braves in which they took two out of three games, including Joe Blanton’s complete-game, three-hit gem as the Phils won the get away game by the score of 4-0. The Phils’ offense is contining to hit, while they are now starting to score runs as well, including scoring 13 in the losing end of a 15-13 extra-innings lost to the Braves on Wednesday night. Their opponent, the Nationals (16-9, 1st) have just finished a three-game series at home with the D-backs, in which they have also won two of three games.
The Phils will be sending to the mound Kyle Kendrick (0-2, 6.59), who is still looking for his first win of the season, as he continues to pitch in place of the still recovering Cliff Lee. He had lost his last start against the Cubs on April 29, as he went six innings, giving up three runs, only two of which were earned, on five hits and a walk, while striking out seven, in the Phils’ 5-1 lost. Against the Nats, he has a losing record of 2-3 with a high ERA of 5.46, while striking out 32 Nationals. He will be trying to pitch himself to his first win of 2012, while hoping to feed off of his previous start. The Nats will counter with Stephen Strasburg (2-0, 1.13), who is coming off of a no-decision against the Dodgers on April 29, where he went seven strong innings, allowing just a run on five scattered hits, while he struck out nine, in the Nationals’ 4-3 lost. Career-wise, Strasburg has a record of 0-0 against the Phils, with a 2.08 ERA, as he struck out only six Phils. He will be trying to give the Nats the first victory in the opening contest between the two ballclubs. The Phils will be looking towards bringing themselves a bit closer to first-place in the Eastern Division, while trying to defeat the hard throwing right hander.