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12/17/1978 (38 y, 2 m, 3 d)
2000 June Amateur Draft - Round: 1, Pick: 15, Overall: 15, Team: Philadelphia Phillies
$2M / 1 Years (2017)
Utley will get some work at first base during spring training, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. (2/17/2017)
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(Click Year to Expand /
Year in Review:
Coming off back-to-back 30+ homer seasons, you won’t find a second baseman with more reliable power. You also have to love the 23 bases that he stole in as many attempts in ’09. Toss in a solid batting average and run production with 100+ RBI in four of the last five seasons and you have fantasy gold, baby. It won’t help you much in fantasy ball, but Utley is also a nifty fielder, according to UZR. With a WAR of 7.6 in ’09, the keystone giant was worth more than $30 million to the Phillies this past season and he can be yours for a pretty penny during your 2010 fantasy draft.
The Year Ahead:
What hasn't the 31-year-old infielder done? Utley just might decide an MVP award would look good in his trophy case. While that might be expecting a little too much, the Phillies second baseman will certainly be an offensive force with 30+ homers, more than 100 runs scored, and quite possibly 100 RBI. A little more luck on balls in play and Utley could reach a .300 batting average once again. You'll grab him for his power potential, but remember that he's also a smart base runner and should be good for 15-20 steals. The club did not improve the lineup much around Utley, but it didn’t need too. With the likes of Ryan Howard and Jayson Werth in the lineup, Utley should touch home plate on a regular basis. (Marc Hulet)
The only thing keeping Chase Utley out of the first round of every fantasy draft on the planet is the question of health. He missed 49 days last season with a thumb injury, and overall it was his worst season since becoming the everyday starter in 2005. The good news is that the injury really only affected his power. He still hit for a decent average, and in just 115 games he still managed to score 75 and drive in 65. If his power comes back he's probably the most valuable second baseman in the league. If it doesn't, he's still top five. The difference is a matter of a few spots in a draft, but considering Utley's history it's a decent bet that he bounces back. At this point Robinson Cano is the only better bet. (Joe Pawlikowski)
The Quick Opinion:
Health questions might keep Utley out of the first round, but even then he's going to be a high draft pick. Considering the drop-off after the top five second basemen, he's worth it.
Only Albert Pujols accumulated more WAR (43.1) than Chase Utley (39.1) from 2005-2009, but thumb and knee problems have hampered him the last two seasons. The 33-year-old still plays great defense and draws plenty of walks, but his ground ball rate has jumped to 41% over the last two years after sitting in the low-30% range in previous years. More grounders means less power, as his isolated slugging percentage has gone from .210+ regularly to just .165 the last two years. His batting average has also dipped from consistently over .290 into the .260-.275 range, and for the first time in his career, Utley was mortal against left-handed pitchers in 2011. Luckily, a second baseman with a decent batting average, 15+ homers, and 15+ steals still has a lot of fantasy value, but the Phillies stalwart is now a bit of a question mark because of his injury troubles and age. A .290/25/90/20 season in 2011 isn't entirely out of the question, but the odds are against it. (Mike Axisa)
The Quick Opinion:
Injuries have limited Utley's once elite production in recent years, but he still figures to provide a solid batting average (.270+) with close to 20 homers and 20 steals next year. He's no longer the slam dunk, elite fantasy performer he was from 2005-2009, however.
Calling Chase Utley brittle might be an understatement, as his at-bat total has dwindled every season since 2008. The amazing thing is that his underlying skill set continues to hold up pretty darn well. He still walks at an above average clip, makes excellent contact, hits line drives while avoiding pop-ups, displays good power and steals bases with great success. Despite having all the ingredients for a high batting average on balls in play, he has posted marks of just .301 or below every year beginning in 2008. Perhaps it's the degenerative knee condition. If there ever was a hitter with hidden batting average upside, Utley is that player. Of course, health is always the biggest question mark and at age 34, the chances of him returning from injury and being productive decreases. He remains a high risk, high reward option who might come cheap enough to be worth gambling on. (
The Quick Opinion:
The oft-injured Utley performed respectably in about a half-season's worth of at-bats last season, contributing double-digit home runs and steals. His skills remain pretty solid, so as usual, if he's on the field, he should continue to be one of the more valuable fantasy second basemen.
Two separate knee injuries attempted to put Chase Utley out of business, but he rebounded with a successful 2013. Now 35 years old, Utley is clearly in decline, and at least one of those knee problems is degenerative and likely to continue bothering him. But the former star is still capable of putting up strong fantasy numbers at second base. Overall, the numbers he put up last season were just a hair under his career averages, so there's definitely something left in the tank. The problem is, Utley is a lock to miss 25+ games each year due to rest and injuries. Age is also somewhat of a concern, as he's approaching a point in his career where many players go south. Those issues will push him a little lower than they should among second baseman. He'll probably put up decent numbers again, but make sure you have a backup plan if -- or when -- he misses time. (
The Quick Opinion:
Utley is no longer in his prime, but he's still an effective fantasy second baseman. He'll miss a few games due to rest and injuries, so make sure you have a backup plan when that happens.
In many ways, Chase Utley remains a valuable baseball player. He’s still a plus defender, according to the metrics. He hits for a decent average (.270 in 2014), reaches base (.339 OBP), and is a smart base runner. He’s still good for fantasy baseball players, too, thanks to things like his 11 home runs and 10 stolen bases last season and the position he plays. His age (36) and balky knees put his performance and presence at risk, but he’s learned that year-round training is essential to maintaining them. Other flaws have emerged, however. Injury may have been the catalyst that exposed Utley to southpaws, but even in his recovered state, he’s been unable to hit them the way he used to; his weighted offense numbers say that he was better than league-average in only one of the past four seasons against them after having been 31 percent above league average or better in each of the previous four. His .138 isolated slugging in 664 2014 plate appearances is his worst since the .134 of his 2003 debut (152 plate appearances). Still, he was a starting-caliber fantasy second-sacker last year and could be one (or close to it) in 2015, at least in part because he wants to stay in Philly and will thus occupy a prime lineup position there. There may be some semblance of an old-guy discount again, too. If there isn’t, then let someone else risk a few extra bucks; the upside isn’t that great anymore. Otherwise, Utley is still a decent mid-round bet in mixed leagues. (Nicholas Minnix)
The Quick Opinion:
Utley has found ways to extend his career after his initial run-ins with knee problems seemed to doom it, and, although age-related decline has clearly set in, he’s still a well-rounded, fairly reliable player. He still comes with risk, of course, so in mixed leagues, he should be priced closer to a high-end middle infielder than a top-ten option at his position.
Utley is signed on for at least another year, as the Dodgers extended him a one-year offer. It looked like it might be a platoon situation between Utley and Enrique Hernandez, with the former holding the bigger slice of the playing time pie thanks to his left-handed swing. But now with Howie Kendrick back in the fold, Utley is more of a backup. If pressed into more time, the 37-year-old is still probably good for 10 home runs and maybe an okay batting average, since some of his poor rate stats can be attributed to a .233 batting average on balls in play. However, that BABIP can also be attributed to Utley slowing down as well as hitting for a lower hard contact rate and a higher soft contact rate. Even as a middle infielder option, Utley is no longer a great candidate. (David Wiers)
The Quick Opinion:
Just a few years ago Utley was the bee's knees. Looking back it makes sense, because bees' knees seem awfully small and frail, and unfortunately those words also describe Utley's knees.
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Updated: Monday, February 20, 2017 11:40 AM ET
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