Archive for the ‘ Dailies ’ Category

Waiting on Utley

Ruben Amaro Jr. said Saturday the Phillies would know if a cortisone injection into Chase Utley‘s right knee worked before the end of the weekend. He adjusted that timetable Sunday, when he said they would know in 24 to 48 hours.

Amaro offered no update yesterday.

“There’s nothing new,” he said.

Perhaps we will learn something today. In the meantime, here is today’s lineup against the Orioles at Bright House Field: Shane Victorino CF, Placido Polanco 3B, Jimmy Rollins SS, Ryan Howard 1B, Raul Ibanez LF, Ben Francisco RF, John Mayberry Jr. DH, Carlos Ruiz C and Josh Barfield 2B.

Cole Hamels makes his third Grapefruit League start.

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Headed to Lakeland for tomorrow’s game against the Tigers? This is the lineup posted in the clubhouse (subject to change): Rollins SS, Victorino CF, Polanco 3B, Howard 1B, Ibanez LF, Delwyn Young RF, Ross Gload DH, Brian Schneider C, Wilson Valdez 2B.

Joe Blanton starts.

If you’re looking for pitching schedules through Saturday, click here.

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Utley, Brown (Not Really) News

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Ruben Amaro Jr. had nothing to report today about Chase Utley‘s right knee.

Hopefully we’ll learn something tomorrow.

Utley had a cortisone shot Friday. The shot can take a few days to work. If the shot does not work, I’m not sure what happens next, but it certainly would not be good news. Talked to a few teammates today who expressed their concerns about Utley’s health.

“That’s what worries me,” Placido Polanco said. “I was talking to my wife the other day. I said, ‘Man, that guy is a gamer. He’s tough. He’s got to be really hurting to not be playing.’ That’s why I’m a little worried. But I’m not a doctor. I don’t know how bad it is. I just hope it’s nothing bad.”

“Chase is a guy who’s out there every day and wants to play,” Ryan Howard said. “You hope it’s not something that is overly serious. You hope it’s something that goes away, so he come in here and get some work to get ready for the season.”

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Domonic Brown will have surgery tomorrow to repair his broken right hand. Recovery is expected to be four to six weeks.

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Brown Looking Up Despite Broken Hand

Domonic Brown landed in Philadelphia late this afternoon/early evening and NBC 10’s John Clark caught up with him at the airport.

Here is some of what Brown told Clark:

“It’s not that bad at all,” Brown said of the break. “They’re saying three to six weeks. I’m only 23 years old. It’s really just a little bump in the road. … I’m really not worried at all. As long as we win and do what we’ve got to do. I’m not a selfish guy at all. Of course I’m angry, of course I’m mad about the situation, but you’ve got to move on. These things happen, especially in sports.”

Brown fractured the hook of the hamate in his right hand fouling off a pitch Saturday. He finished the at-bat, singling up the middle for his first hit of the spring, snapping a 0-for-15 skid.

“I was feeling good, finally feeling my hand position,” Brown said. “It’s only 15 at-bats, man. You can’t say anything about 15 at-bats, especially with my hand positioning and doing all the movements and everything. It’s going to take time for me to get ready. Fifteen at-bats is nothing.”

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Brown Fractures Right Hand, Surgery Likely

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Domonic Brown‘s chances to win the everyday job in right field evaporated today when he fractured his right hand.

Surgery is likely, which would sideline him three to six weeks.

Brown fractured the hook of the hamate bone swinging at the first pitch in his first at-bat in the second inning against the Pirates at Bright House Field. He finished the at-bat, singling up the middle to end a 0-for-15 start to his Grapefruit League season. Brown left the game before the top of the third, returning to the clubhouse and leaving the ballpark quickly for an x-ray.

Brown will fly early next week to Philadelphia, where hand specialist Randall Culp will evaluate him. If the initial x-ray is accurate, surgery seems inevitable.

“Probably,” Ruben Amaro Jr. said. “We won’t know until it’s definitive. What the x-ray reveals right now is what is believed to be a fracture.”

Brown’s loss practically guarantees Ben Francisco will be the Opening Day rightfielder, although Amaro declared nobody a winner in those sweepstakes. Francisco, Brown and John Mayberry Jr. opened the spring as the top contenders to replace Jayson Werth. Brown struggled early as he tried to get comfortable with a new stance at the plate.

“Nobody has won our right field job, but Ben has done very, very well for us,” Amaro said.

Francisco went 2 for 3 with one double, one home run and one RBI against the Pirates. He is hitting .421 (8 for 19) with two doubles, one triple, two home runs and six RBIs in seven games this spring.

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Utley Gets Shot in Right Knee

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Chase Utley has patellar tendinitis in his right knee. The Phillies initially prescribed rest and rehab to fix it.

But after a week of that Utley’s condition has not improved, so yesterday he got a cortisone injection. Here is what Utley said before today’s Grapefruit League game against the Pirates at Bright House Field:

How are you feeling?
I’m feeling OK. The past week I’ve been doing a lot of different things to alleviate the pain in my knee. It hasn’t gone as well as I would have liked. Yesterday I had a cortisone shot in my knee to try to get the inflammation out. It’s just kind of a step by step process at this point. The whole goal for me is to try to get this fixed as soon as possible, but also keep it in perspective. I’ve got to keep it right for the long haul as well. I feel like we’re making the right progression. We’ll see how it goes.

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Halladay Has the Stuffed Chooch

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Yes, Roy Halladay has the Carlos Ruiz pillow/doll/toy/whatever-it-is at his home in Florida.

It’s in his youngest son’s bedroom.

Halladay shot a commercial for 2K Sports’ MLB 2K11 three or four weeks ago, and Phillies fans love it. Who knew Halladay could act? Who knew he had comedic timing?

“Are you guys saying I’m boring?” he said with a laugh.

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Where Can You Get This Chooch?

I’m probably the last person to post this commercial on a Phillies blog (Saw this on The 700 Level via Phuture Phillies), but it’s too good not to post. I’ve got to say, Roy Halladay does a good job with it. Who knew the guy could act? And I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before people start calling the Phillies to see where they can get the stuffed Chooch in the commercial.

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Springtime is Bonding Time

oswalt and lee.jpgIt is a common sight this spring to see some combination of Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt, Cole Hamels and Joe Blanton hanging out at a table in the middle of the Phillies clubhouse at Bright House Field, eating breakfast and chatting before morning workouts.

The five starters seem to be getting along great.

Oswalt and Lee have gone to dinner a few times this spring while their families are back in Mississippi and Arkansas, respectively. They’ve gone fishing, too.

They basically had never spoken until this spring. They met once previously, but details remain foggy. They were both in Philadelphia for surgeries in 2003, and met each other in the waiting room. Lee was having hernia surgery. Oswalt was having groin sugery.

“We were so drugged up coming out of anesthesia,” Oswalt said. “I remember a guy being in there with me, but I didn’t know it was him at the time. He told me that he remembered me and my name. I remember he pitched for Cleveland. I never remembered his name. I remember just leaving. When I woke up I felt like I could leave the hospital, so I told the doctor I felt great. I walked out. He was going to walk out too and he stood up and said, ‘No, I think I’m going to stay here.’ So I left. We talked an hour or two. That’s the first time I ever met him. I didn’t know that until I came back here.”

Said Lee: “That was the only time I talked to him. I knew he was from Mississippi. I knew he was a redneck, so I figured I’d get along with him.”

So who’s the better fisherman?

“He’s been doing pretty well the last two times we went, but it’s pretty close,” Oswalt said.

Who’s the better hunter?

“Ain’t no way he’s getting close,” Oswalt said.

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More Ball …

Hola, amigos, we’re here at Bright House Field. It’s sunny and 66 with a strong breeze, but I think it’ll be in the 70s by first pitch. The Phillies play the Orioles this afternoon. Roy Oswalt makes his Grapefruit League debut.

Here’s the lineup:

  1. Jimmy Rollins, SS
  2. Placido Polanco, 3B
  3. Raul Ibanez, LF
  4. Ryan Howard, 1B
  5. Ben Francisco, DH
  6. Shane Victorino, CF
  7. John Mayberry Jr., RF
  8. Brian Schneider, C
  9. Brian Bocock, 2B

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Carlos Ruiz has been in Panama since yesterday for personal reasons. He could be back Friday. … Forgot to mention this yesterday, but it was right-hander Nick Strincevich‘s birthday. He turned 96. Strincevich and outfielder Alex Pitko (11/22/14) are the oldest living Phillies. The Phillies released Strincevich June 11, 1948, to make room for Robin Roberts. Strincevich is the last player to wear No. 36 before Roberts.

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Manuel Contract, Utley Updates

Ruben Amaro Jr. and Charlie Manuel‘s agent met today at Bright House Field to talk about Manuel’s contract extension.

Manuel is seeking a two-year extension, but money has been the sticking point. Manuel is seeking to be paid amongst the top managers in baseball, which would push his salary to more than $4 million annually.

“It was productive,” Pat Rooney told CSNPhilly.com. “We’re getting closer.”

Rooney said he was hopeful a deal could be reached before Opening Day.

Amaro declined to say he was more optimistic than he had been in the past, but said, “Hopefully we can get something done. I think Charlie wants to be in Philly. We want him to keep in Philly. We’ll see. Nothing has changed for me. I was hopeful and optimistic then. There’s nothing really to report.”

So are they close?

“I’m not going to get into the discussions,” Amaro said.

“Ruben and Pat are working toward a resolution,” Manuel said through a team spokesman.

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Amaro said nothing has changed regarding Chase Utley‘s patella tendinitis, which the Phillies announced Sunday.

“He’s still doing treatment,” Amaro said. “He’s hitting. Nothing new.”

Amaro and Manuel said there is no timetable for Utley to play in a Grapefruit League game.

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