With Tom Gordon out for the season, Ryan Madson is getting a chance to be the eighth inning guy for the Phils. And he’s been really good this month. Until last night. Madson started the eighth with a 3-2 lead and faced five right-handed hitters. Four of them got hits and one of them gave the Phils an out with a bunt.

The Nats scored twice in the inning and won 4-3.

And now, on to the offense. It’s still bad. Utley hit the ball well last night and seems like he might be just about out of his two-month funk. Everybody else, not so much (Werth, Victorino and Dobbs are just about the only exceptions).

The Phillies lost to the Washington Nationals last night, falling 4-3 to drop to 68-59 on the season. The Phillies win the series two games to one but fall 2 1/2 games behind the Mets in the NL East.

Jamie Moyer got the start for the Phillies and went 6 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on five hits and three walks. Only one of the runs was earned. All five hits were singles. He struck out four.

His 3.54 ERA is 15th-best in the NL. The Phillies have scored four or fewer runs in eight of the last ten games that he has started.

Ryan Zimmerman singled with two outs in the first, but Lastings Milledge flew to center for the third out.

Moyer set Washington down 1-2-3 in the second and in the third.

In the fourth, Milledge walked with two outs. Ronnie Belliard flew to left for the third out.

Willie Harris walked with two outs in the fifth. Pitcher Tim Redding grounded to first to leave him stranded.

Anderson Hernandez and Cristian Guzman started the sixth with back-to-back singles. It put men on first and second for Zimmerman, but Moyer got him looking at a 1-2 pitch for the first out. Milledge was next and hit a ground ball to third. Feliz threw to second. Guzman came into the bag hard, but was forced for the second out. Utley’s relay to first went off the tip of Howard’s glove. Howard should have caught the ball, but Utley got the error and it allowed Hernandez to score and put the Nats up 1-0. Milledge went to second on the error, but Belliard grounded to short for the third out.

Austin Kearns singled with one out in the seventh and the game tied at 1-1. Harris was next and he singled into right. Werth threw to third — Kearns was safe and the throw allowed Harris to go to second. Righty Aaron Boone hit for Redding and popped to Howard for the first out. Hernandez was next and Moyer did everything he could to get into his head. Twice he asked for a new ball and the home plate ump came out to talk to him about it. Hernandez won the battle, though. He hit a 2-2 pitch up the middle. Rollins fielded it moving to his right, but whirled to throw to first and dropped the ball. Hernandez had a single and Kearns scored to put Washington up 2-1. Harris went to third. Durbin came into the game and got Guzman to ground to first to end the frame.

Madson started the eighth with the Phillies up 3-2. Zimmerman led off and ripped a ball down the third base line, off the bag and high into the air. Bruntlett, just in the game after Dobbs hit for Feliz in the seventh, wisely didn’t make a throw and Zimmerman had a single. Milledge was next and blooped a single to right that moved Zimmerman to second. Belliard bunted the runners to second and third for the first out. Jesus Flores was next and hit a ball back up the middle for a single. Utley made a diving stop behind the bag to keep Milledge from scoring, but Zimmerman scored to make it 3-3. With men on first and third and one down, Kearns lined a single over short. Milledge scored and it was 4-3 with men on first and second. Pete Orr ran for Flores at second and Romero entered the game and struck out Harris for the second out. Righty Will Nieves hit for pitcher Saul Rivera and Romero struck him out to end the frame.

Coming into the game Madson had been charged with one run in 9 1/3 innings over his last nine appearances. He had allowed three hits and three walks while striking out seven.

Condrey started the ninth with the Phils still down a run. Guzman reached on an infield single with one out. Zimmerman was next and chopped a ball to third that went in and out of Bruntlett’s glove for an error, the fourth in two games for the Phils. Milledge chopped a ball slowly back to Condrey and Condrey took the out at first as the runners moved to second and third. Belliard was next and Condrey walked the righty intentionally with the pitcher behind him to load the bases. The pitcher Joel Hanrahan hit for himself and grounded softly to second to end the frame.

I thinking walking the righty Belliard is just kooky with the lefty Langerhans looming on the bench. Ditto with leaving Hanrahan in to hit for himself. Belliard is really hot, but was 0-for-3 in the game. Worked out for the Phillies in the top of the ninth and for the Nationals in the bottom of the ninth.

The pen went 2 1/3 innings, allowing two runs on five hits and a walk. Everyone but Madson pitched fine and Romero was particularly impressive. Condrey threw 24 pitches. Everyone else was 11 or fewer.

The Phillies’ lineup against righty Tim Redding went (1) Rollins (2) Werth (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Burrell (6) Victorino (7) Feliz (8) Ruiz. Werth again in right against the righty with Jenkins (and Dobbs) on the bench. Jenkins came into the game 12-for-21 with five doubles and a home run against Redding. Feliz returns to the lineup after a stint on the DL. Ruiz catches.

Utley walked with two outs in the first, but Howard struck out behind him.

Burrell dumped a single into right to start the second, but the Phils went in order behind him.

The Phils went 1-2-3 in the third, fourth and fifth.

Down 1-0 in the sixth, Moyer hit for himself to start the inning and struck out. Rollins flew to center before Werth doubled to right. Utley was next and he laced an 0-1 pitch back through the middle for a single that scored Werth and tied the game at 1-1. Howard grounded to the shortstop Guzman, playing where you would expect the second baseman, to end the inning.

The Phils started the seventh down 2-1. With one out, Victorino chopped a ball to third. Zimmerman charged and fielded, but his throw to first was wild and went up the right field line. Victorino went to third on the error. With the righty Saul Rivera on the mound, Dobbs hit for Feliz and the Nats brought their infield in. Dobbs got behind 1-2 and then chopped a ball to second, where Henandez made a great play diving to his right to field the ball and flip to first. Victorino scored from third to tie the game at 2-2. Ruiz was next and he hit a 1-0 pitch out to left-center to put the Phils up 3-2. Jenkins hit for Durbin and doubled to left. Rollins grounded to short for the third out.

Great job by Victorino on the bases, getting to third on a chopper to third and then scoring on the ground ball by Dobbs. Nice job by Manuel to hit Dobbs for Feliz and nice job by Dobbs not to strike out. It’s a little early to use the best hitter on the bench, Jenkins, with two outs and the bases empty (but he did get to hit against the righty Rivera and probably would have faced a lefty later in the game).

Werth led off the eighth and walked on a 3-2 pitch. Utley was next and laced a single to left-center. It put men on first and second with nobody out, but Howard struck out swinging 2-2 and Burrell hit into a double-play.

Ouch. Great at-bats by Werth and Utley to start the inning.

Victorino led off the ninth with the Phils down 4-3 and singled. Bruntlett was next and showed bunt until he took two quick strikes. Victorino stole second as the count went 2-2. Very close play and they almost had him. Bruntlett struck out looking on the next pitch for the first out of the inning. Ruiz was next and hit a slow ground ball to short for the second out as Victorino went to third. Coste hit for Condrey and fouled off two 3-2 pitches before he grounded to short to end the game.

Would have been nice to have Jenkins to hit in the ninth. Phils were out of third baseman (unless you believe Manuel would use Coste, who has never played third in the majors) so I don’t know if Manuel would have hit him for Bruntlett or not. I’d guess he may have let Bruntlett try to bunt anyway and hit Jenkins for Ruiz and then Coste for Condrey. Lefty Charlie Manning may have faced Jenkins.

Rollins was 0-for-4 in the game and 1-for-12 in the series. He’s hitting 261/326/421 for the year and 211/296/316 in August.

Werth was 1-for-3 with a double and a big walk in the eighth. 3-for-11 with two doubles and a home run in the set. 265/355/488 for the year. He’s hitting just .235 in August. Jenkins was 1-for-1 with a double in the game and 1-for-1 with an RBI in the series. 244/301/392 for the season.

Utley 2-for-3 with a walk and an RBI. He can’t carry the team with the way everyone else is hitting, but it would be great to see him bust out of the eternity slump. 4-for-11 with a double in the series. 285/369/566 for the year.

Howard needs a day off. 0-for-4 with three strikeouts including a huge one in the eighth inning. 1-for-11 with five strikeouts in the series. 1-for-his-last-17. 229/317/474 for the year.

Burrell needs a day off too. Might not help, but I don’t think it could make things much worse. 1-for-4 with a strikeout. 2-for-12 in the series. 263/387/548 for the year.

Victorino had a great series. He was 2-for-4 with a stolen base last night and 6-for-10 with a double and a triple in the series. Fantastic on the bases last night. He’s hitting 290/355/448. Aaron Rowand is hitting 287/355/443 for the Giants.

Feliz was 0-for-2 in his only action of the series. He’s hitting 254/302/421 for the season. Dobbs was 0-for-1 with a big RBI in the game. 2-for-5 with a home run in the series. 304/342/474 for the year. Needs to be in the starting lineup more, at third or in right. He has played 4 2/3 innings in right this season. Bruntlett was 0-for-1 with a strikeout in the game and in the series. 214/297/291 for the year. He’s 2-for-his-last-23. One extra-base hit in his last 48 at-bats.

Ruiz was 1-for-4 and his third home run of the year should have been the story of the game. 1-for-4 in the series. 220/321/292 for the year. The home run was his third extra-base hit since June 13 (101 at-bats). Coste was 0-for-1 in the game and 3-for-5 with an RBI in the series. 277/329/455 for the year.

Kyle Kendrick (10-7, 5.01) faces the new Dodger, righty Greg Maddux (6-9, 3.99), tonight. Maddux’s last start also came against the Phillies. Pitching for the Padres on April 15 he allowed a run on a solo shot by Burrell over seven innings, but the Phils won the game 1-0. In the 12 starts he’s made away from Petco Park this season he’s gone 3-5 with a 5.75 ERA and a 1.53 ratio (2.62 ERA with an 0.98 ratio in San Diego). He has only walked nine right-handed batters on the season. Jenkins (25-for-60, 417/470/550) and Burrell (16-for-47, 340/380/596) have hit him well over their careers. Ruben Amaro 2-for-12. With the departure of Adam Eaton and the unhittableness of Myers, Kendrick suddenly has the worst ERA in the Phillies’ rotation. He’s been shelled in his last two starts, charged with 13 runs over seven innings. Lefties are hitting .326 against him for the season.