Utley Is Back In Action

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It looks more and more like Chase Utley will be in the Phillies’ lineup Opening Day.

Utley, who is recovering from offseason hip surgery, played in a Minor League spring training game today at Robin Roberts Field at the Carpenter Complex. He went 2 for 4, singling up the middle in his third at-bat and hitting a ground-rule double in his fourth at-bat. He also played four innings at second base. He reported no problems.

“As far as physically, it still has some room for improvement,” he said. “But it was nice to be out there. It was nice to try to get the feel of the game back. That’s probably going to be the most difficult thing, is just to get that flow back. But as far as physically, it felt pretty good.

“No pain hitting. No pain fielding. I ran hard a couple times, and like I said, there are no problems there. It’s good to know.”

Utley said he has had no setbacks to this point.

Pedro Feliz said yesterday he plans to be in the Opening Day lineup.

“It’s the same plan,” Utley said. “As long as everything continues to go the way it has, the plan is to be out there.”

7 Comments

Cool beans! Great news!

Awesome, looks like he’ll be ready in time. *knocks on wood*

Also, high socks? Normally I’m all for pulling them up, but damn his legs are skinny. They look smaller than Ryan Howard’s arms. (intrepid blogger that you are, you should look into that..haha.) Any word if this is a permanent change?

I was wondering about the high socks, too. LOL!

Zo…..Was that considered a *B* game? I was going to ask if there was a B game today, and go. Oh well. I spent the day at the pool instead. Poor, poor, pitiful me!

A single tear of joy just ran down my cheek.

The Phillies require Minor Leaguers to wear their socks up for uniformity purposes.

Utley could have gone to the Carpenter Complex and worn his pants the way he normally wears them — with the bottom of his pant legs below the ankle — but he chose not to.

“I didn’t want to stand out,” Utley said. “They were nice enough to let me play in their game, so I figured I would respect them and do what they do.”

The very subtle gesture did not go unnoticed.

“It just shows his humbleness, if you would,” said Phillies assistant general manager Chuck LaMar. “It shows his respect for the game. He was here at one time. He’s a star because of the way he conducts himself. It doesn’t surprise me.”

I’ll take Chase Utley at 75% over Eric Bruntlett at 100% any day. The only thing I’m worried about is last year Burrell and Utley carried us through the first couple of months that Ryan struggled through. We can’t expect Chase to be able to do that in April. He may not be 100% until May or later. Ryan has to show up early this year. Jimmy is looking like a WBC MVP these days, which reminds me, I can’t wait to see the Phils bat against that guy who was wearing Odalis Perez’s uniform for team Mexico in that WBC game against Korea. Can anyone say “batting practice”?

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