By Matt Leon

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – After taking two out of three in Miami, the Phillies will continue their road trip on Friday night as they open a weekend series in Washington against the Nationals.

The Phillies sit at 23-24 on the season, which is good for third place in the National League East. They are 5 1/2 games behind the first-place Braves, and just a game behind the second-place Nationals. This is the first of nineteen match-ups between the Phillies and Nationals this season.

The Phillies will be without second baseman Chase Utley for at least the next couple of weeks. He has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with an oblique strain. To take his place on the roster, utilityman Michael Martinez has been recalled from AAA Lehigh Valley.

It should be a good pitching match-up in this series opener as the Phillies give the ball to right-hander Kyle Kendrick and the Nats counter with Jordan Zimmerman.

Kendrick is 4-2 this season with a 2.82 ERA and he has probably been the Phillies most consistent starter. In 19 career appearances against Washington, Kendrick is 4-5 with a 4.68 ERA.

Zimmerman has been one of the best starters in the National League, as he brings a 7-2 record into tonight and he sports a 1.62 ERA.

KYW’s Matt Leon spoke with Kevin Cooney of the Bucks County Courier Times about Friday night’s match-up.

You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.