Utley Activated From DL; Martinez to Lehigh Valley

Posted by Pat Gallen, Wed, June 27, 2012 02:31 PM | Comments: 18
Analysis, News, Opinion, Posts

Utley is back tonight. (AP)

UPDATE 3:10 pm: Utley is in the lineup batting third. Like old times.

Phillies lineup vs. PIT: Rollins, Pierre, Utley, Ruiz, Pence, Victorino, Wigginton, Fontenot (3B), Valdes.


Chase Utley is finally returning to the Phillies.

Tonight at 7:05, Utley will man his familiar position at second base, bat in his familiar position in the lineup (third), and hear that familiar roar when his name is called as he steps to the plate.

And in true Utley fashion, he’ll take it all in stride.

For Phillies fans, it has become a holiday of sorts. People gearing up to buy tickets, taking the trek to Lehigh Valley for his rehab appearance on Tuesday night – Utleymania will reach it’s fever pitch when he settles into the box in the bottom of the first.

Maybe he won’t be the same guy we’ve witnessed in the past, and maybe he won’t be the savior for this rather dreadful season. But what you can count on is an upgrade at second base, where the Phillies have posted some subpar numbers. Even with Freddy Galvis providing more than anyone could have imagined, the Phillies rank 12th out of 16 NL teams in average, 13th in OPS, and last in runs scored. Phillies second basemen have drawn just 10 walks. Utley will likely change all of that.

Many have asked me what we should expect from Utley upon his return. At first, it’s unlikely he’ll play everyday, although I foresee that changing quickly once he feels comfortable. At the plate, a .275 average with 10-12 home runs over the second half of the season is fair. Anything above that from Utley would be gravy.  It’s improbable that he’ll be a 30-homer, .330-average threat.

So temper expectations and in the early going, give him a reprieve if things don’t start smoothly. Utley is still finding himself at the plate and getting his timing down against major league pitching could take some time. Don’t assess him fully on 10 or 15 at-bats; it could take him a month to get his baseball legs going again.

Michael Martinez was sent down to Lehigh Valley as the corresponding move.

Avatar of Pat Gallen

About Pat Gallen

Pat Gallen has written 1677 articles on Phillies Nation.

Pat is Editor-in-Chief of Phillies Nation. He also covers the Phils for 97.5 FM in Philly.

  • Posts: 5160 Lefty

    Avatar of Lefty

    Anyone else surprised they kept Fontenot and sent MM down? I am.

    I’m glad, but surprised.

  • Posts: 61 GM

    Avatar of GM

    Happy, but surprised.

    I actually expected both Martinez & Fontenot to stay & Luna to go to Lehigh Valley.

  • Posts: 1190 Manny

    Avatar of Manny
  • Posts: 0 George

    I’m a little surprised, too, because Martinez can back up at SS; Fontenot has extremely limited experience there. It looks like the Phils aren’t going to let Rollins sit at all this year, and with the team’s injuries this year, hoping for Rollins to escape a two or three day tweak may not be such a good idea. He’s played with injuries before, which only made those injuries worse.

    • Posts: 835 schmenkman

      Avatar of schmenkman

      Fontenot has actually played more SS in the majors (although Martinez has played much more in the minors).

      I also hope Rollins starts resting occassioinally. They must think Fontenot can fill in for a game here and there at least.

  • Posts: 0 Dave P

    I wonder what kind of line up we can expect…


  • Posts: 5160 Lefty

    Avatar of Lefty

    Utley is in tonight’s lineup? Wow.

  • Posts: 1190 Manny

    Avatar of Manny

    I think Charlie said he’ll bat him 3rd. So expect: Rollins, Shane/Polanco, Utley, Chooch, Pence… etc

    • Posts: 1190 Manny

      Avatar of Manny

      Scratch that…

      Via PN twitter:
      RT @patgallen_pn: Utley’s back — Phillies lineup vs. PIT: Rollins, Pierre, Utley, Ruiz, Pence, Victorino, Wigginton, Fontenot (3B), Valdes.

  • Posts: 2990 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Thank the good Lord that MiniMart was sent down.

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr

    I have to actually say im not surprised about Martinez. Especially after the debacle when they had Mini Mart hit in the Rays game. My guess they will leave him down there for a bit and eventually call him up. Whilst i dont think he is a .270 MLB hitter maybe with some reps in the minors he can be a Mendozaish hitter. Fontenot and Luna wil be the subs for Rollins and Utley. It makes sense actually even with Fontenot limited experience at SS.

  • Posts: 1190 Manny

    Avatar of Manny

    Utley, Chooch, Pence and Shane…

    Salivating at the potential…

    • Posts: 0 Dave P

      Valdes, Savery, Qualls…

  • Avatar of "Big Ed" Delahanty

    Thank you! Thank you! For finally sending Mini Mart down. Maybe the obsession with keeping him up here is gone. I will take Fontenot over him in a heartbeat. Excited for tonight’s lineup, NOT excited that Valdez is pitching to start us off.

  • Posts: 0 grismundo

    I think I’m more excited that Martinez was sent down than Utley coming back. Chase Utley in a wheelchair is better than Martinez. He should’ve been optioned to Single A.

    • Posts: 0 George

      Single A wouldn’t make him any better, I’m afraid.

  • Posts: 0 BART SHART

    I hope Chase can contribute. I know he will give it his all. This team needs him in a big, big way. Fingers crossed and a prayer to St. Christopher. GO PHILS.

    What a story it would be if Chase and the Phils caught fire and started to move up in the standings. Damn. I guess over-optimism or complete pessimism have been my curses for a long, long time. We will see.

  • Posts: 0 cheap

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