The Phillies have not had much luck in four-game series in recent years, but this is one they would love to have.
They have a chance to take three of four from the Dodgers with a victory in Thursday night's finale at Dodger Stadium. The Phillies have won just two of their previous 15 four-game series. A victory would send them into a weekend series against the D-backs at 11-11, while the Dodgers hope to earn a split after dropping the first two games of the series.
The Dodgers used a strong effort from Zack Greinke in a 5-2 victory Wednesday to give them that opportunity.
"That's what we shoot for now," Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said of a series win. "[Right-hander Kyle] Kendrick has been throwing the ball well. That's the goal. It would be a nice series for us."
Kendrick, who is 0-1 with a 3.50 ERA, faces Dodgers right-hander Daren Haren, who is 3-0 with a 2.16 ERA.
Kendrick pitched well over the weekend at Coors Field, allowing three runs in seven innings against a talented Rockies lineup, but the Phillies were in the fourth straight game without an extra-base hit.
"I kept the ball down," Kendrick said. "The ball up, here the ball carries. You've got to keep the ball down and hopefully they hit it at somebody."
Haren signed a one-year, $10 million contract with the Dodgers in the offseason, and he has been a steal to this point. In 26 innings, he has struck out 20 and walked just two.
Phillies: Asche takes a seat
Cody Asche was the team's Opening Day third baseman, but after starting eight of the season's first 10 games he has started just five of the last 11.
He is hitting just .196 in 46 at-bats, but Sandberg chose Freddy Galvis on Wednesday despite the fact he had just one hit in 18 at-bats.
"I'd say some of the biggest improvements we've made the last three games is solid pitching and solid defense," Sandberg said. "Freddy has been a part of that. So he finds himself in the lineup. Freddy has been part of making plays and solid defense. Pitching and defense gives you a chance to win."
Dodgers: Defense needs to tighten up
The Dodgers lost Tuesday because a routine pop fly fell between left fielder Carl Crawford and shortstop Hanley Ramirez for a two-base error in the top of the 10th inning.
The Dodgers entered Wednesday with 22 errors, the second-most in the Majors. That is a number that must improve.
"I'm assuming, if we're going to get to where we want to go, it's not going to be with 10-8 and 7-6 games, it'll be 4-2 and 3-1 where a mistake can cost a run when they don't come easily," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "You don't get as much attention for playing solid defense. They don't say, 'Bills [Chad Billingsley] really backed up the bases well today.' But we have to change what we've been doing. We need a much better concentrated effort. There are going to be certain physical limitations for certain players, but we can't afford mental mistakes. We need to be in the right position and communicate. These guys know what to do. We've got to make sure we put enough focus on it. I've expressed it to them once and will continue to."
• Phillies center fielder Ben Revere is hitting .440 (11-for-25) against left-handers.
• Billingsley received a platelet-rich plasma injection Tuesday for right elbow tendinitis. Billingsley, who is returning from Tommy John surgery, had a setback in his first Minor League rehab start.
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.