After eight years in the Nationals organization, Phillies southpaw John Lannan will make his first start against his former team on Monday at Citizens Bank Park.
Lannan was drafted by the Nationals in 2005 and twice started on Opening Day for the team. But after losing his spot in the rotation to Ross Detwiler last year, he was non-tendered by the Nationals and signed a one-year, $2.5 million deal with Philadelphia in the offseason.
The 28-year-old made just two starts this year before straining the quadriceps tendon in his left knee on April 17 against the Reds. He made a rehab start at Double-A Reading on Wednesday, allowing two runs on seven hits over seven innings.
"With the injury, every day you look for something that got better from the day before," Lannan said after the start. "It felt much better than it did the last time out. … I've been honest the whole process and I think I'm ready."
So, too, do the Phillies.
"They say he's been doing good," manager Charlie Manuel said. "He's responding real well. He's throwing the ball good."
The Nationals dropped their series finale against the Indians on Sunday, 2-0, wasting a one-hit outing by Stephen Strasburg in the process. Washington put eight runners on base with no outs, but couldn't bring any of them home. The preseason World Series contenders are now 34-34 and only two games ahead of the Phillies in the National League East.
"Eventually, just like everything else in baseball, it will turn around," shortstop Ian Desmond said. "We are not necessarily running out of time, but we need to start taking more steps in the right direction."
An inconsistent Dan Haren will make the start for Washington. Haren has been effective at times this season, but the Nationals have lost each of his past six starts.
Nationals: Rendon continues to pace offense
Anthony Rendon has been one of the few bright spots for Washington's struggling offense. He collected three more hits on Sunday and is now batting .444 (16-for-36) since taking over for injured starter Danny Espinosa on June 5.
Rendon has also looked comfortable at second base, a position that he played in Little League but not much since that time. A third baseman by trade, Rendon said that he is still adjusting to the different angles and responsibilities that come with a new position.
"I'm trying to get feedback from anybody that could help me out," Rendon said. "You never stop learning from this game. That's the crazy thing. I'm [not] trying to do too much. I'm just trying to make the plays."
Phillies: Young nearing mark
Third baseman Michael Young is two RBIs shy of 1,000 for his career. There are only 18 active players in Major League Baseball in the 1,000-RBI club.
• Center fielder Ben Revere, who is hitting .321 in his last 40 games, has a seven-game hitting streak (.438).
• Strasburg allowed just one run, but he was shouldered with the loss on Sunday. In three of his six losses this season, he has allowed one earned run or less.
• The Phillies won two of three in their first series against the Nationals last month. In 2012, the two teams split the season series, 9-9.
Tom Schad is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.