Francisco played a big role, finishing 3-for-4 with three RBIs and three runs scored. He came to the Phillies from the Indians in the Cliff Lee trade in July 2009. The outfielder hit a total of 15 homers in '09 after doing the same thing in '08.
But his playing time dropped this year, winding up being more of a pinch-hitter. Francisco had a .278 average as a pinch-hitter, and this was just his 29th start. He's also received just 170 at-bats.
"You just try and stay ready the whole year," Francisco said. "It's just tough, mentally, mechanically, all of it. It's a challenge, something you've got to get used to. It's tough to go out there and face big league pitching once every two weeks or so."
Francisco got to face that pitching in back-to-back nights. He went 2-for-4 in Tuesday's loss, then returned to go 3-for-4 with three RBIs Wednesday -- the fourth multihomer contest of his career.
"I trust Francisco," said Phillies manager Charlie Manuel. "Francisco can hit. I've always said he could hit."
Francisco probably will see some more playing time in the regular season's final series before going to back to his usual role in the playoffs. His best chance to start again could come if the Phils advance to the World Series -- possibly in a designated-hitter role in an American League park.
Sweeney and Francisco hit back-to-back solo homers to lead off the second, putting the Phillies on top, 2-0. In the fourth, Sweeney walked to lead off, and Francisco followed with a single to center before Mayberry blasted a three-run homer.
The son of former Major League first baseman John Mayberry, he was recalled on Sept. 7 and finished the night 2-for-4 with three RBIs and his first homer this season. Francisco added his second homer in the fifth inning, ending Detwiler's night with a two-run shot to left.
All of this helped Blanton in one of his best efforts this season. The right-hander gave up one run on three hits in seven innings. He struck out six and didn't get into much trouble.
He's now 5-0 with a 3.03 ERA in his last 11 starts, and he hasn't lost since July 21.
Blanton is likely going to see more time in the bullpen at the start of the playoffs as the Phillies probably will need only their top three starters in the five-game NL Division Series. He understands the situation, said the team is fortunate to have Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels and that he'll be ready in the bullpen if needed.
"Basically, you can say they're three No. 1s, kind of three horses to go to," Blanton said. "That's a great thing to have. [But] I've relieved a little bit in the past. It's a little bit different, and there's a little bit of adjustment. But at the same time, pitching's kind of pitching."
The victory spoiled the final home game for Washington (68-91), which finished the season with a winning record at home (41-40) for the third time in six years since coming to town.