Cliff Lee (4-4, 3.50) hopes to collect just his second road win when the Phillies pass the halfway point of their nine-game road trip tonight in balmy Washington. First pitch is 7:05. Jason Marquis (5-2, 4.26) goes for the Nats.
Beerleaguer: Despite some easier opposition lately, tip your cap to the Phils for pushing the rock up the hill during this stretch of 20 games without an off day, which included some rather tough opposition and a rash of injuries. They’re 10-8 over that span following Monday’s comeback with a much-needed break coming Thursday. After that, the Phils should basically be back to 100 percent for the first time this season, with Brad Lidge the only notable exception. … While the bats have generally heated up (more longballs, more production, in general, from the 5-through-8 holes), pitching continues to be a stabilizing force, and although Cliff Lee will tell you that he needs to keep the ball out of the middle of the plate, he’s still among the league’s best in terms of strikeouts and K/BB ratio. … Earlier today, it was announced that Kyle Kendrick will fill Saturday’s TBA against the Pirates. Raise your hand if you assumed, as I did, that Kendrick would be back in the rotation this season for one reason or another. Say what you want about KK, but it's nice having that kind of failsafe. … Trending topics from the Memorial Day holiday: Domonic Brown (9-for-28) starts again tonight, which makes it 8-of-the-last-10. Shane Victorino’s return will decide whether Brown is officially a member of the starting nine, at least against righties. Meanwhile, John Mayberry just hasn’t had the same offensive impact as a starter as he’s had as a bench player. Although his glove has shined, he’s hitting just .221 as a starter with a pair of homers.