September 28, 2012 |
CHARLIE MANUEL didn't want to make too big a deal of the fact that Chase Utley was taking ground balls at third base a month ago. He likened it to his own, just-for-fun pregame routines as a player. But since the Utley third-base experiment appears more serious with each passing day - the veteran second baseman could have scrapped it after a week or 2 - Manuel made a point to watch Utley's latest workout on Wednesday afternoon. "He looked pretty good," Manuel said. "He threw good.
June 20, 2014 |
There was a break between innings during a recent Phillies loss, and David Montgomery looked toward second base from the owner's suite at Citizens Bank Park. That is Chase Utley's spot; it was his when this sparkling ballpark opened, and when the Phillies signed Utley to a two-year contract last summer with three option years, Montgomery imagined it was Utley's until he relinquished it. Utley and shortstop Jimmy Rollins have started 1,129 games together, the most of all active double-play combinations.
August 12, 2015 |
PHOENIX - Major League Baseball's trade deadline arrived more than 10 days ago, but it doesn't mean major league teams are finished shopping for roster upgrades. The Phillies traded for a vital piece of their 2008 championship run in August: home-run hero Matt Stairs. Teams can still trade for players this month - and have them eligible for postseason play - if they consummate a deal before Sept. 1. The catch is those players must be moved through waivers - either in getting claimed off waivers, claimed and traded for, or passing through waivers and then traded.
August 11, 2015 |
SAN DIEGO - With Jerome Williams fashioning his best start of the season and an opportunity to break the game open, manager Pete Mackanin decided to stick with the team's longtime cleanup hitter, Ryan Howard, with two on, two out and his team up two runs in the seventh inning of yesterday's game against the Padres at Petco Park. Maikel Franco had just been walked intentionally and Howard was matched up against San Diego lefty specialist Marc Rzepczynski. Howard, who is hitting .192 with 142 strikeouts in 328 at-bats against lefthanders since the beginning of 2013, struck out to end the rally.
August 7, 2015 |
TRENTON - Chase Utley looks ready to return to a big-league lineup. Utley, playing in his third rehab game in four days, went 3-for-4 with an RBI double and a walk in Double A Reading's 11-1 win over the Trenton Thunder last night. Utley could return to the Phillies' lineup as soon as this afternoon, or perhaps more likely, when they begin a 10-day West Coast road trip tomorrow night in San Diego. The Phils could choose to give the 36-year-old a day of rest rather than putting him on the field in a day game today against the Dodgers after a night game.
June 17, 2015 |
BALTIMORE - Chase Utley, who has failed to emerge from an offensive funk 10 weeks into the season, took ground balls at first base before Monday night's game against the Orioles and was slotted at designated hitter in manager Ryne Sandberg's lineup. Heavy with corner outfielders but not much else, Sandberg decided to use the DH slot with Utley, one of the least productive hitters in baseball in 2015. Utley's batting average (.184) and OPS (.553) both ranked 159th out of 161 qualifying big-league hitters entering play Monday.
May 8, 2015 |
REPORTS OF Chase Utley's demise have been exaggerated, but not greatly, and not even moderately. This wasn't only the worst April of his career, but the worst month of his career. At the same time, any talk of rectifying the situation through some means other than letting him play his way out of it is extraordinarily premature. As we have written many times, the Phillies are in a position where they must attempt to maximize the future value of the assets they have in their organizational portfolio, and Utley remains one of those assets.
August 21, 2015 |
YESTERDAY was a scheduled off day for Chase Utley, according to interim manager Pete Mackanin. He may not have been in the lineup, but it just so happened that all of the attention was on the 36-year-old second baseman, as trade rumors echoed throughout the clubhouse at Citizens Bank Park. Not long after last night's 7-4 win over the Blue Jays, it was official: The Phillies traded Utley and cash considerations to the Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for outfielder Darnell Sweeney and righthander John Richy.
November 3, 2009 |
Charlie Manuel was smiling in his office, 16 hours after his team handed the New York Yankees a nearly insurmountable lead in the World Series. "I feel fine," the Phillies' manager said, leaning back in the chair behind his desk. "Ready to go. Looking forward to it. . . . We came to the ballpark to win today. " On this team, Manuel sets the mood. The manager did not need to hold a meeting or deliver a speech; his players knew him too well. They knew that he expected them to worry only about playing a focused baseball game, and have fun doing it. That in-the-moment mind-set has always been the team's strength during the Manuel era, and it allowed the Phils to extend their season last night.
June 27, 2012 |
Chase Utley acknowledged that he is an optimist, only because he has felt nothing to dissuade him from that positivity. So the Phillies second baseman, nearing a return to the majors, sounded as upbeat as ever on Monday. On the eve of what is likely his final rehabilitation game, Utley said his troublesome knees feel better than they have in "a few years. " He believes they can be even stronger eventually. And he likely will bat third Wednesday night for Charlie Manuel's last-place Phillies, who desperately need anything resembling a boost.