Joe Blanton made what was likely his third and final rehab start at double-A Reading Wednesday night, allowing five runs on five hits in five innings against Harrisburg.
The veteran righthander, barring an injury setback, is expected to rejoin the Phillies Monday in time to pitch against the St. Louis Cardinals.
A team source said before the game that he thought both Blanton and reliever Brad Lidge were ready to rejoin the Phillies. Lidge made what was likely his final rehab appearance Tuesday when he pitched two hitless innings and struck out four for Reading.
Blanton, out since suffering a strained left oblique muscle late in spring training, surrendered a three-run home run to Harrisburg's Leonard Davis in the top of the first inning and a two-run shot to the Senators' Bill Rhinehart in the third. The Davis home run came on a 0-2 fastball and the Rhinehart shot was on a 1-0 pitch. Both home runs were to left-handed hitters.
Blanton threw 67 pitches, including 46 for strikes, walked one and struck out two.