Joe Blanton (0-0. 15.75) faces righty Shairon Martis (0-0, 9.00) tonight in the middle game of the three-game set between the Phillies and the Nationals. Blanton was awful a week ago against the Braves, allowing seven runs in four innings. He made just 13 starts for the Phils last year, but three of them were against the Nats. None of the three were that inspiring. He threw to a 5.40 ERA and a 1.60 ratio in those outings, which came on August 19, September 3 and September 26. The September 26 start was the best of the three. Blanton allowed four runs over six innings, but three of them were unearned.

Martis turned 22 at the end of March and has made one start on the year in which he allowed three runs to the Braves over three innings. Lefties have hit 327/410/615 in 61 plate appearances against him in his career. He pitched 2 1/3 innings in relief against the Phils on September 28 of last year, which was the last game of the regular season. He allowed a run on two hits while striking out three.

Update 4/15: Joe to throw, just not tonight. Tonight’s game is rained out.