Monday, June 04, 2012


Chase Utley is not the answer.  There, I've said it.

The silent second baseman announced in an impromptu "news conference" he was feeling better and would be heading to Florida for his own personal Spring Training.

Good luck, Chase.  We have always admired you but we no longer have high expectations.  You have earned the right to come back at your own pace, and heaven knows we won't you to succeed.  That said, we aren't counting on you for much.  We don't know what position you should or could play.  (Bloggers and commenters suggesting the outfield are, frankly, complete idiots.  He can hardly make the throw from second to first base.) We don't know if you can drive the ball any longer.  We do believe your presence won't be sufficient to right the Phillies' sinking ship.

While we're at it, we don't have particularly high expectations of your infield mate Ryan Howard either. 

The only thing keeping hopes around in these parts is that no one in the rest of the league, all three divisions, is exactly running away from the pack.  The Dodgers, for example, have lost seven of their last ten and still lead second place SF by three games in the West.

What we have in Philadelphia is a coincidence of  several position players having non-career years all at once with the notable exception of Carlos Ruiz.  Placido Polanco and Hunter Pence have bounced back to something closer to their norms though Polanco's run production is woeful and Pence can be very topsy-turvy, especially in the field.  Juan Pierre has been a revelation but for some odd reason his manager refuses to lead him off.  Nearly everyone else is mediocre or worse.

The greatest crime, however, is one beat writer Bob Brookover captured succinctly this AM in his lead in the Inquirer:

The game [against the Marlins] itself was played in 3D - dull, dull, dull.