• July 4, 2022

Chase Utley Finds New Role In Phillies Lineup

It is obvious that even after coming off the disabled list, Chase Utley finished the first half of the season performing at less than 100 percent. Truth of the matter is that the former All-Star second baseman may never perform at the level he has in the past.

After starting the season on May 23rd, it looked as though something was missing with the Pasadena native. His numbers told Phillies fans they were going to have to be patient before he could find his groove. In May, Utley posted only six hits in eight games dropping his batting average to .222, which is one of the worst stints of his career.

The Bruin did leave some Philly locals with optimism. Despite his poor hitting, Utley stole two bases in two attempts during May. He followed that with three more stolen bases in June and three in early July.

Eight stolen bases half-way through the season isn’t anything to brag about, but don’t forget Utley suffered a knee injury and narrowly dodged surgery. Seeing the once MVP candidate running the bases the same way he had prior to the injury is a main reason many still consider him a very rare, five-tool second baseman.

The five-time all-star started off July amidst an eleven game hitting streak, leaving critics who talked about his “decline,” speechless. Although Utley’s power numbers are down, his on-base-percentage has been steadily increasing since the end of May.

Despite his mere four home runs, the four-time Silver Slugger has concentrated on getting into scoring position for Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez, who follow him in the order. Utley has already walked 17 times this year, scored 22 runs and his .280 average shows he has been more than pulling his weight.

Besides his injury plagued spring training and slow start through May, the infamous fan favorite emerged as a top table-setter in the Phillies lineup and that can’t be over looked.

It is hard to act surprised about Utley’s change to a contact hitter because his power numbers have been consistently dropping since 2008. After lowering his homerun tally by 15 long balls in 2010, the all-star second baseman made the right decision to revamp his hitting style to focus more on line drives rather than tape-measure shots.

Fans may be starting to get restless with Utley, but trust me hold out, a huge second half is in the mix. If the Phillies expect to hold their lead over the red hot Braves, they are going to need their pivot man at his best.

I’m not saying his power numbers are going to increase, I’d be surprised to see the 32-year-old with over 20 home runs, but I do think he will continue to build his already solid OBP and decent batting average. If the left handed hitting second baseman can improve both his average and OBP by 10 to 20 points, it would be a surprise if Howard has less than 130 RBIs come October.

Whether a contact hitting table-setter is the role Utley wants or is ready for, he needs to embrace his position because when push comes to shove, the Phillies need their out-spoken star to be on base waiting for Howard to bring him home.

Richard Greco

Read Previous

Flyers Must Begin Preparing for Life Without Pronger

Read Next

Chase Utley Is The Phillies MVP

15 Comments

  • Utley is not naturally a Power Hitter, he’s a line-drive,contact, gap hitter, but he turns on the inside pitch ball so quick that he can power balls over the short-right field fences of many of today’s parks..Remember that 3-4-5 Years ago, lots of players were hitting 25-30 + Homers based on Smaller Ball Parks, Poor Pitching and the use of PED”s .. I would rather him bat .300, hit a bunch of doubles, steal some bases and hit 15 HR’s and drive in 80-85 Runs.. Then be .265 Hitter with 30 HR’s.. I think many, including himself, after a couple of playoff series where he hit a bunch of Homers got a little Home Run Happy and tried too hard to hit homers instead of just making solid contact which is what he does best..

  • Hey Its fantasy time a few owner slots left on expanding 20 team keeper league

    Go to NFL.com select Live draft Aug 6th and click join for Urban League.

    I am trying to build a multi season big league with history, rivalry and a story line from season to season.

    Next season and beyond draft selection will be based on how you finished just like in the NFL, plus there will be 9 keeper slot roster, draft day picks trades, and off season trades for players and draft picks. In this league you will get to really manage a team.

    This going to be a great league!!!! Thanks for joining

  • Is that Draft day of Aug 6th etched in stone Mono…
    There are 400-500 Free agents out there ready to switch teams which will be difficult to see who all goes where by Aug 6th..

  • Paul I am thinking about moving back to perhaps Aug 13th for that reason, as well as the Hall of Fame action that week. Also this league will be using individual defensive players as well. This is a thinking mans league deep rosters require you to know your game, and scout that third reciever second RB more carefully becasue now these guys mean something.

  • Paul this is a strange season for the NFL, plenty of uncertainty, but I will be leaving the draft at the 6th of Aug, this will allow time for owners to do their own fantasy deals, blitz the fantasy FA market.

  • anyone here from scorp yet about his league? mono I cant find the link your talking about…

  • vricchini
    To join league Go to

    NFL.com fantasy join page, click have an invite and enter
    League ID#: 30907
    League Password: urban808

    Everyone is welcome to join

  • Utley, is done. Stick a fork in him. He has reverted into singles hitter, that grounds out 50% of his at bats. Thankfully for Mayberry coming up huge again last night, because Utley costed us a run with another baserunning blunder. He didn’t tag from second on a fly ball, then the very next pitch was a wild pitch. Where has his head been? He is known for his great baserunning.

  • Damn it, I am in trouble, if it’s a thinking man’s league…Mono..

  • Has anyone heard that Reno Mahe was charged with stealing gas? Its crazy, then acts like he didn’t know he was stealing. classic. We are talking about a couple thousand over a few months. The story was on NFL.com

  • Paul oh Paul, you are just the pot stiring, talk magnet that every league needs. To be sure, I don’t agree with alot of guys here at times, at times I do but one think is clear there are a whole lot of thinkers passing through this site.

    Dam Eagle fans ya just gotta luv em…snif snif….The lockout may soon be over, to which I say……..Eagles Get ‘Em.

    As always LONG LIVE THE EAGLES

  • the only thing passing thru here often is Schiller’s gas…. Ha ha

  • WHaaaa haaaaa haaaaaa, uh..hum… err…. sorry Schill, didn’t see that one coming.

  • LOL paulman. Mono Cant wait until the league starts.. Last year was my first year at FF and I sucked ass (paulmans my witness)

  • Vricchini, I hear you brother, its all fun, the good thing is in our league you can build on any good points since it is going to be a multi season league. I am turning on all the options and gadgets that NFL.com has to offer to make our league feel like the real thing.

    Something tells me at some point in time Paul has a shot over the bow coming from the USS Schiller…….. Scientist seeking the anwsers to the mind of Paul.

Comments are closed.