A man of little words, Chase Utley has always preferred to do his talking with a bat. But this season, the bat will remain silent as Utley attempts to recover from a potentially long-term injury.
Utley’s chronic knee pain has been found to be the result of patellar tendinitis, bone inflammation and chondromalacia. And that does not just sound scary, it is scary.
Hesitant to speak about the issue, Utley has dodged reporters all through spring training. Luckily, he did not need to depend on the knee to do the dodging.
But when he did finally speak, very little was made any clearer. Utley referred to making “some progress” but still has no time table for a return. And when asked which doctors he had seen, Utley’s response was, “ If I tell you I have to kill you.”
While that dry sense of humor is charming, it brings him no closer to a solution. Surgery seems to risky and may actually do more harm than good. Odds are that Utley will return at some point and likely struggle through the season in some pain.
And so Utley remains a bit mysterious. Incidentally, the word “mysterious” is defined as “Difficult or impossible to understand, explain, or identify; Having an atmosphere of strangeness or secrecy.” Yup, that about sums it up.
As for the rest of the team, they are on their way back to Philly to play two exhibition games Tuesday and Wednesday before Opening Day on Friday. Questions still linger about the Phillies. Will Luis Castillo make the team? Who will be in the bullpen? And will Jenn absolutely freak out when the full reality of Utley’s absence hits her on Friday? Stay tuned…
Photoshopping by Jenn Zambri Photography