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Chase Utley

SPORTS
July 16, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
MINNEAPOLIS - Chase Utley sat in the dugout at Miller Park in Milwaukee last week before pregame batting practice and was asked a rather simple question: "Eleven months ago, this team wasn't playing well and you wanted to stay here anyway, re-signing with the Phillies rather than testing free agency in a few short months," the reporter started. "You wanted to stick around. Has your stance changed?" "No," Utley said. "That's still the case. " Not surprisingly, Utley's stance hasn't changed in the last week, either.
SPORTS
July 16, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
MINNEAPOLIS - A chair reserved for Chase Utley was positioned under a sign with his name on it, but the Phillies second baseman stood. He stared at the seat. Major League Baseball mandated that Utley - the lone Phillies all-star - spend 45 minutes Monday with reporters. He overcame career-threatening knee injuries to start Tuesday night for the National League, but circumstances overshadowed that accomplishment. "Are they trying to trade him?" Hunter Pence, a former teammate, wondered from across the room.
SPORTS
July 15, 2014 | BY JAKE KAPLAN, Daily News Staff Writer kaplanj@phillynews.com
THE GOOD vibes from a five-game winning streak against first-place teams dissipated in less than 24 hours. The bats fell quiet once again, at least in timely situations, and the 2014 version of the Phillies entered the All-Star break with a performance emulative of much of the season's previous 94 games. Despite a franchise-record payroll, the Phillies yesterday reached the unofficial halfway point of the season 11 games under .500 and 10 games out of first place. A 10-3 drubbing at the hands of the NL East-leading Nationals dropped them to 42-53, only six teams in baseball owning a worse winning percentage.
SPORTS
July 15, 2014 | By Marc Narducci, Inquirer Staff Writer
Kyle Kendrick has experienced the first-inning blues. It matches the Phillies' first-half blahs. Both the pitcher and team have yet to get going this season, at least for any sustained length of time. Kendrick gave up a three-run, first-inning homer to Jayson Werth on a hanging curveball, setting the tone for a 10-3 loss to the Washington Nationals Sunday at Citizens Bank Park in the final game before the all-star break. During the opening inning this season, Kendrick has allowed 24 earned runs in 19 innings for a hefty 11.37 ERA. He has served up seven first-inning home runs.
SPORTS
July 14, 2014 | BY DAVID MURPHY, Daily News Staff Writer dmurphy@phillynews.com
THERE'S AN interesting dynamic inside the Phillies organization right now. The team is nine games under .500, with the fourth-worst run differential in the National League. For weeks now, the questions about the team's long-term direction have seemed more pressing than those involving the short term. Yet after last night's 6-2 dispatching of the Nationals, the Phillies are winners of five straight, tied for their longest streak of the season, and playing like the team they envisioned themselves to be at the start of the season.
SPORTS
July 11, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
MILWAUKEE - The trade deadline is 20 days away and Jonathan Papelbon is eager to move on from the Phillies to a team in contention. Asked on Wednesday night if he was ready to move on if a contender came calling, Papelbon gave an affirmative, "Yeah," and added an almost incredulous laugh, too, for effect. Papelbon also said it was "mind-boggling" to him that anyone would want to stay on a last-place team, that it was a "no-brainer" to move on if given the chance. How exactly did his boss react to that?
SPORTS
July 11, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
MILWAUKEE - For the third day in a row, the Phillies looked like a winning team, from their timely hitting, bullpen pitching and overall play. All that said, their closer would like to find a new home at some point in the next 3 weeks. Following the Phillies' 4-1 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers last night, their third straight win over the team with the National League's best record, Jonathan Papelbon expressed his desire to move from the last-place team to a contender before the July 31 trade deadline.
SPORTS
July 9, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
MILWAUKEE - The Phillies, a .206-hitting team in their previous 16 games (13 losses), practiced their batting Monday afternoon at Miller Park. The man who constructed a flawed team watched from the visitors dugout. Ruben Amaro Jr. ascended the steps, eyed a pack of reporters, and decided this was the moment. He sought to motivate his roster before a 3-2 win over the Brewers with threats. He promised changes - not just in the form of trades - and questioned the status of entrenched but unproductive veterans.
SPORTS
July 8, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
PITTSBURGH - A.J. Burnett took the mound at PNC Park yesterday afternoon with both a lead and a heartfelt welcome from Pirates fans. Burnett, who revived his career in Pittsburgh in the last 2 years before signing with the Phillies as a free agent, drew a standing ovation as he returned to the field in a different uniform. A video tribute played on the ballpark's scoreboard. As the rousing applause grew louder, Burnett tipped his cap. "It caught me off-guard . . . very classy," he said afterward.
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