Cliff Lee takes the hill tonight looking for another shutout win over the Washington Nationals with the Phillies in DC for the second of a three game series. Lee is undefeated against the Nats in his career and threw a three hit shutout in which he struck out 12 in his last time out against them. A win tonight would be the Phillies' seventh straight over their NL East "rivals."
He will oppose Jason Marquis, who has not fared nearly as well against the Phillies. In fact, since joining the Nats last year, Marquis is 0-5 with a 9.49 ERA against the Phils. He's been particularly victimized by Chase Utley, who is 13-28 (.464) lifetime off Marquis.
The Phillies have been on a tear as of late, winning eight of their last 11 and starting off 3-1 on this current nine game road trip. After a bit of malaise in early to mid May, the Phils resurgence seems to have coincided with the return of Chase Utley. Charlie Manuel says that it's no coincidence that things are starting to pick up now that the team is getting healthier.
"We're close to really being healthy," Charlie Manuel said. "We should be at 100 percent and our offense should pick up. Our pitching has been there all year. We could really get into a season where we play real good baseball. It's kind of up to us. We're the ones that have got to make it happen."