The Phils fell to the Marlins 5-1 on Sunday, missing out on an opportunity to win their third consecutive series, and more importantly, gain some ground on a divisional foe. I suppose the result was predictable. Joe Blanton is still prone to the long ball against literally anybody wielding lumber, serving up his ninth and tenth home runs in his last four starts, including one by the opposing pitcher for the second consecutive outing.
The news was not all bad after the game though. Phillies bench coach second baseman Chase Utley told reporters he's hopping a plane for Clearwater on Monday, and this time he'll be there to play baseball.
Utley will test the water with some extended spring training before presumably eventually joining the Threshers. As usual, timetable = none -- nor has what position he might play in the field been addressed -- but Chase appearing in any type of actual ball game will be a welcome sight.
“[I’m] just trying to feel comfortable on a daily basis,” he said. “There were times when I felt good one day and then didn’t feel so good. Right now I’m feeling good on a daily basis so I’m headed down to Clearwater to get some at-bats. I’ll start out by DHing and I’ll be able to see some pitches and get my timing down and when the time is right, I’ll get out on the field and work there.”