Ron Costello

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Here's a Thought: Utley a Designated Hitter

Well, let's face it,  Junior didn't buy my comparison of the '93 and '15 Phillies.

Next thing you know, Cliff Lee goes down; now he's got 60 days to rest his sore arm and come back June-something to see if he can still get it up.

Now there you go, thinking like that. I'm talkin' about his fastball!

Aaron Harang has a sore back and now Jerome Williams has a sore hammy.

Junior's shopping Cole like he's Bob Feller and Robin Roberts rolled into one. Guess teams aren't interested in a pitcher who was 9-9 last season. Either that, or they're waiting out Junior until he'll take the pirate beer salesman and two cotton candy pushers.

"Good morning ladies and gentleman, you'r tuned to 101-K Ohio Country and it's another hazy-lazy sunrise in Cleveland this morning and traffic is still heavy on the south side — of course the big news here is that the Indians dealt their three top farm prospects to the Phillies for pitcher Cole Hamels, who was 9 and 9 last season..."

They did what? Wait, I've got to pull over.

Since Junior's last big acquisition was Jeff Francour — not counting Brian Bogusevic, who'll never come north because Matt Stairs will have to get drunk to pronounce his name — everything is pretty much pointing to a Phillies' season that will suck.

So I'm scratching my head and asking why the hell is Chase Utley still here.

Is Utley any part of the future of this team? Will Utley be the Phillies' second baseman in '16? And just how many kids need time at second to develop? If the team's goal is to develop, there's no half develop. Is there?

Chase showed up at spring training with a sprained ankle. At least it took Jerome a few days to get a hammy, and Cliff a whole game to get the sore arm. Well, okay, three innings. In spring training, that's a whole game.

At 36, Utley can still hit. Problem is, if he plays every day, he wears down and his production goes south faster than Al Gore's climate speech.

Now here's something way out of the box.

Are you ready?

Why doesn't a team let Utley hit, but not take the field? A situation where he can rest then hit, rest, then hit — see what I'm saying?

Am I on to something here? Be careful, it gets tricky.

If he just hits, and doesn't play the field, would that be a DH? And another question. How many years does it take to make Chase a DH? By the time Junior gets it done Chase will be playing ball with his grand children.

Lookit, here's the thing: If Chip Kelly was running the club, Utley would have been a DH two years ago, about the same time Cliff Lee would've been cleaning out the barn in Alabama.

I'm just saying.
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