With the National League down, 3-0, Chase Utley doubled home a run in top of the second inning. He celebrated his usual way: Putting his hands on his hips and staring out into space, as if he were a baseball-playing automaton. “My programming allowed me to achieve that excellent baseball result,” Utley thought, probably.
Utley actually factored in to all three of the National League’s runs last night. He doubled home a run to make it 3-1, then scored on a Jonathan Lucroy double that followed. Utley’s at-bat was probably the best of the night, too: He worked a seven-pitch AB against Red Sox star Jonathan Lester for his double, fouling off several close pitches and generally looking like the awesome hitter he’s been for the Phillies.
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While the Phillies were swept by the Pirates in Pittsburgh, there was some good news out of this weekend: Chase Utley will start his sixth MLB All-Star Game this year. It’s his first All-Star Game nod since 2010.
Fans vote for the starters in baseball’s All-Star Game. Utley received about 800,000 more votes than the second-place vote getter, Dodgers second baseman Dee Gordon. He won the player’s vote, too, over Gordon.
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The Phillies rallied from a run down in the ninth to beat the Rockies on Wednesday night, and the way they did it was just fantastic: Chase Utley stroked a two-out single to tie the game at 3, and Ryan Howard followed with a three-run game-ending home run.
It was the kind of thing the 23-27 Phillies haven’t done much of this year—they’re only 11-15 at home. But what was great was the way Ben Revere high-stepped it to home plate after Howard’s walkoff.
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After: A room at the Utley penthouse as restaged by Gretchen Kubiak. Photo by Drew Callaghan.
When Jen and Chase Utley decided to sell their triplex penthouse at the Ayer, they didn’t take their furniture with them, as they live elsewhere during the off-season. It was perfect timing for their real estate brokerage, Sotheby’s, which was then able to show the home the way it looks when someone lives there. But when the Utleys’ new home in Philadelphia was finished, the couple was ready to have their furniture back — which presented a problem.
“A $4.3 million home that’s vacant,” says Kurfiss Sotheby International Realty’s Melanie Stecura, “that doesn’t look right. That’s 4,500 square feet of blank space.” Stecura says it can be hard for buyers to imagine such a large unit as a home if it’s just a series of vast, echoey rooms. As it is, she says, “there are not a lot of buyers in this price range in Philadelphia,” so it’s important to make every effort to show the home at its best.
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Last night at the Union League the Jimmy Rollins Family Foundation held its fourth annual bash which always has an exciting city theme to it. In the past they created Havana Nights, Harlem Nights and A Night in Paris. Last night it was Taste of the World: Bollywood Bash 2014.
The Rollins event is always fun and lively; his teammates are good sports and always dress for the theme, and last night they didn’t disappoint, as you’ll see in the photos. As with all the Rollins events I’ve attended, it was a laid back fun evening for the players, supporters and fans.
The evening started with cocktail party held in the Lincoln Hall. There were food stations by various local restaurants including Sbraga, Dandelion and Davio’s, music was by CTO’s Tribeca band who had the dance floor packed all evening, and when they weren’t playing, CTO’s DJ Ravi Jackson was mixing up Michael Jackson and current favorites. Down the hall there was an entire room devoted to sweet desserts, including a gorgeous four-tied Bollywood inspired cake created by Cakes & Candies by MaryEllen. Proceeds from the event will benefit local charities dedicated to making healthy food available to children and families most in need including at risk youth in the Philadelphia area.
Jimmy Rollins Family Foundation’s ‘Taste of the World: Bollywood Bash 2014′ »
We’re 12 games into the season, and the Phillies are 6-6. In their first homestand of the year, they were swept by the Brewers — who are out to a 10-2 start, the best in baseball — but rebounded to sweep in the Marlins in turn. The Phillies have been outscored by 6 runs, and the team’s no longer a hot ticket: On April 11th, the Phillies drew just 22,483 fans, the lowest since July 31, 2006.
But there are reasons to be optimistic about the 2014 season. While the pitching’s shaky, the offense is humming along: Second in the NL in hitting, first in on-base-percentage, sixth in slugging. And a big reason for that is the work of Chase Utley.
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Baseball is back! And yesterday was an incredible start for the Phillies, as they walloped the Rangers by a football-like 14-10 score. It was an incredible start to a season filled with low expectations.
So, why not recap it with a few animated GIFs! There was plenty to get excited about during Monday’s big win.
Yes, the first big highlight of the season was a walk. Ryan Howard has averaged 81 walks over a 162-game season for his career, so it’s not really surprising he drew a base on balls here. But look what it led to!
Yeah, it led to a run. And to the always-excellent scene of Ryan Howard rounding third base. Maybe Howard could’ve been a two-sport athlete: Get him going in open space and who’s going to tackle him? Howard finished 2-for-5 with 3 strikeouts.
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Cliff Lee. Photo | Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
The white board in the Phillies’ locker room — across from the tubs where the players dump their dirty clothes — was the spring training communications center.
It’s where the daily lineup and travel rosters were posted, along with reminders for players to get their visas and announcements about who had to show up for which practice.
One by one every morning, guys walked over to see if there was anything pertaining to them.
On the last Sunday of spring training, a message was written in green marker.
“Walking Dead Night Sunday,” the message read. “(See AJ about details).”
I never was able to pin down A.J. about the details, but I am guessing he wasn’t referring to the potential disaster which general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. hath wrought.
Still, Burnett may just have well been forecasting 2014.
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Ryan Howard. Photo | David Manning, USA Today Sports
Deadspin has a list of all of the payrolls this season in Major League Baseball, with the Phillies coming in at third place overall in the league with $180,052,073. The Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees will pay out $235,295,219 and $203,812,506 this year, respectively. Read more »
Ruben Amaro Jr.
Sitting in “Whale Beach,” an outdoor section of stands at Bright House Field reserved for media and VIPs, Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr., talks to Philadelphia magazine about the Jimmy Rollins controversy, Freddy Galvis’s health scare, and whether he is feeling the heat going into his sixth year at the helm after two straight seasons without reaching the playoffs.
Philadelphia magazine: Given super-sub Freddy Galvis’s bout with MRSA and the ceaseless chatter about the need to dump Jimmy Rollins and the team being too old, is this spring crazier than usual?
Ruben Amaro Jr.: No. Every year is a challenge. We always have to deal with DLs and issues that pop up. Like (former GM) Dallas Green told me from the very beginning, we are firemen. We have to try and put out fires and this is just another set of them, and we have to deal and go from there.
Philadelphia magazine: How is Galvis (who contracted Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus after suffering a scrape on his left knee)?
Ruben Amaro Jr.: Galvis is doing just fine. We were concerned about the severity of the infection. I don’t know how long it is going to take him to be ready but I’m more concerned about his overall health and so far he’s doing a lot better.
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