Monday, March 19, 2012

Phillies finally acknowledge Utley isn't right

Clearwater, FL - Phillies second baseman Chase Utley will visit a specialist as he continues to battle a right knee condition. Utley has yet to appear in a game during spring training.

"Chase's rehab process has come to a bit of a plateau," said Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. in a statement. "He has made some strides but not enough to take the field. He is headed out of town for a few days to be evaluated by a specialist that has helped athletes overcome his issue.

"We anticipate that this trip will allow him to build on what he has already done with [head athletic trainer] Scott Sheridan in order to get over the hump. He wants more than anything to be on the field with his teammates, and we believe that this is a step in that direction."

Utley was also sidelined to start the 2011 campaign because of the knee issue. He missed 46 games and didn't appear in a big league contest until May. The 33-year-old veteran played just 103 games last year and batted only .259, well below his career average of .290, and his power numbers have also dropped.

He reached the 30-homer plateau three times during his career and also knocked in 100 runs four times, but last year he belted just 11 homers and drove in only 44 runs.

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