Utley Takes Another Step Forward
Chase Utley took a relatively significant step forward in his rehab today.
He played in a simulated game at Citizens Bank Park. Pitching coach Rich Dubee threw batting practice to Utley, who also ran the bases and fielded ground balls. He played roughly three innings, which means after he hit and fielded he rested in the dugout for roughly 10 minutes.
“We’ll find out how he feels tomorrow,” Ruben Amaro Jr. said. “If he feels OK tomorrow then we’ll try it again Tuesday. He’s making progress. It’s good. If he comes out of it OK then it’s good.”
Could Utley be headed to Florida soon to continue his rehab?
“I guess it’s possible, but we’re not putting any timetable on it,” Amaro said. “It’s literally still just a day-to-day thing.”
The Phillies have said they hope Utley can return before the end of the month. If he keeps progressing that seems realistic. But Utley has not seen live pitching since early in Spring Training when he faced Phillies pitchers, so he will need some time to get game ready.
“He’s going to have to get at-bats, there’s no question about it,” Amaro said. “He hasn’t even really gone through Spring Training. He really literally hasn’t had any live at-bats.”
How many remains to be seen. Amaro said he will discuss that with Charlie Manuel.
“We’re getting a little ahead of ourselves,” Amaro said. “I just want to get him on the field.”