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Philadelphia Phillies MLB News - Phillies Baseball Blog » Chase Utley is ready to make up for lost time for the Philadelphia Phillies

Chase Utley is ready to make up for lost time for the Philadelphia Phillies

Blogged under Bloglockers, Front Page, General, Positional Previews for Season by chinmusic on Tuesday 15 February 2011 at 6:22 pm

32-year old lefty swinging Chase Utley had big time issues trying to stay healthy in 2010. He played in 115 games for the Phillies last season and he was 117 of 425 (.275 avg, .832 OPS) with 75 runs scored, 16 homers, 65 RBIs and 13 stolen bases. From 2005-2009, Utley averaged 110.6 runs scored, 29.2 homers and 101.4 RBIs per year and the Phillies expect Utley to get back to those levels in 2011. Utley is a good all-around player as he made 11 errors in 114 games at 2B while showing outstanding range. The Phillies will be a machine again offensively if Utley stays healthy in 2011.

32-year old righty swinging Wilson Valdez will be Utley’s backup again in 2011. Valdez played in 111 games for the Phillies last season and he was 86 of 333 (.258 avg, .667 OPS) with 37 runs scored, 4 homers, 35 RBIs and 7 stolen bases. He has never been much of a hitter in the majors, so the Phillies can’t hope for much more out of him than what he showed in 2011. Valdez is a SS by trade, but he only made 1 error in 42 games at 2B for the Phillies last season but he showed terrible range. The Phillies hope that they won’t need Valdez near as much as they used him in 2010.

28-year old switch hitting Delwyn Young didn’t make any errors in 10 games for the Pirates at 2B in 2010, but he showed pathetic range. Young is a decent hitter and he’s a solid pinch hitter who can play all over the field so he will have a good chance of winning a job on the Phillies’ bench this spring.

31-year old lefty swinging Pete Orr will be in spring training trying to win a bench job. Orr played in 137 games in AAA-ball last season and he was 129 of 489 (.264 avg, .761 OPS) with 63 runs scored, 12 homers, 45 RBIs and 25 stolen bases. Orr made 2 errors in 14 games at 2B last season in the minors. Orr has a career batting average of .260 with a .623 OPS in 347 games in his major league career. He is a decent pinch hitter and he’s versatile in the field.

28-year old righty swinging Josh Barfield was a solid player in his first two years in the majors but he has run into tough times as of late. Barfield played in 78 games in AAA-ball last season and he was 78 of 265 (.294 avg, .725 OPS) with 33 runs scored, 5 homers, 36 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. Barfield made 3 errors in only 32 games at 2B last season in the minors but he has a good reputation as a defensive player. Barfield has a career batting average of .264 with a .671 OPS in 309 major league games over 4 years.

PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE PHILLIES 2B IN 2011: A+

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