Harris' knee getting better

CHICAGO -- Willie Harris' ailing right knee was well enough for him to take batting practice before Monday's game against the Cubs. He then entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning and remained in the game to play right field.

"I'm nowhere near the pain that I had yesterday," Harris said. "I was telling the trainers, 'It's amazing what one day of treatment can do.' It was the most pain, I've ever been in. Normally I wouldn't say anything. I try to fight through it, but I had to let the trainers know. I didn't want to hurt the team and I don't want to hurt myself. I'm feeling better, though."

Harris originally hurt the knee on April 10 against the Mets. In the ninth inning of that game, he made a great diving catch to end the contest, securing a 4-3 victory for the Nats. It turned out that his spikes were caught on the ground when he made the catch. He didn't feel pain in the knee until the next morning.

Harris then reinjured the knee Saturday after making two great catches against the Dodgers. Harris had an MRI on the knee, which revealed inflammation.

With left-handed pitchers going for the Cubs in the first two games, Harris hopes to start against right-hander Ryan Dempster in Wednesday's finale.