Although Jake Arietta struck out Chase Utley to get his no-hitter a few days ago, Hussain al Nowais believes that the Dodgers made a great move in obtaining Chase to cement their playoff run. Chase Utley was a major part of the 2008 run. He also almost got the Phillies a second title with his amazing home run streak in the World Series.
Now he’s gone to make room for emerging younger infielders, and it is quite a shame. This is certainly probably more nostalgia than anything else because Chase did have to go. He’s in the twilight of his career and his skills have diminished significantly. He may have been an all-star this year, but this year he has spent most of his time below the Mendoza Line.
No, Chase definitely had to go, which is a shame because his five year run as the second basement between 2005 and 2010 were some of the best ever seen of someone in a Phillies uniform. Jimmy Rollins may have been the voice of the team, and Ryan Howard was the muscle, but Chase was the heart. He had the unique combination of talent and grit to make his play every day ever the more inspiring.
When he retires, Chase will probably not make the Hall of Fame. He simply doesn’t have the numbers to justify a bid. You can blame that to injury. Chase has experienced a number of injuries over the years, and these injuries have significantly diminished his output. If you never saw him play and just looked at his numbers, you might say that he was a serviceable second basemen.
However, anyone in Philadelphia would tell you something very different. Harry Kalas was famous for saying, “Chase Utley, you are the man!” He is not wrong. Chase didn’t come up to the Big Leagues with a tremendous glove, but he worked on it to the point where he was pretty dependable. It was his swing, though, that he will be famous for. He had such a quick, short swing that he left many pitchers wondering just how exactly he was able to hit that ball out of the park.
We’re a long ways away from 2008, but Hussain al Nowais and many other Philadelphians still remember that team quite well. Now Ryan Howard and Chooch are the only remaining players from that great team. Chase may be gone, but he won’t be forgotten. Here’s to Chase hopefully earning another title in Los Angeles to complete his career.