If I had my druthers, the Phils 3-game matchups with the visiting LA Dodgers wouldn't find Kendrick, Oswalt and Blanton slated to go, but if they're going to overcome the Braves these three guys are going to have to carry their weight.
Of the three, Oswalt is something of the greater unknown since he announced last week he is suffering from a "dead arm". The term sounds pretty awful but most baseball people liken it more to late season blahs than the imminent danger a hurler's arm is about to fall off. Kendrick has been surprisingly reliable of late and Blanton shows some signs of coming around. You have to figure Charlie Manuel is happier knowing he goes into New York this weekend with Cole Hamels and Roy Halladay leading off.
The Dodgers haven't been playing well lately and currently reside in fourth place in the NL West, seven games behind division leading San Diego. Having taken on the Phils in two straight post-season series, the Dodgers have something of a rivalry going with the locals. Old friend, El Enigma, gets the ball for LA. The advance word on Padilla sounds very familiar: great stuff. Just a reminder to the guys in red pinstripes: Be on your toes; Padilla's been gone long enough that the few remaining old ties won't prevent him from coming inside.