Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Since Chase Utley slid into second base in the seventh inning of Game 2 of the National League Division Series, he’s been at the center of headlines. Those headlines have often been less-than-flattering.

Utley was suspended two games by Major League Baseball on Sunday, but appealed, and is available for Game 3 on Monday night at Citi Field. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly mildly defended Utley in the immediate aftermath of Game 2, but was more poignant on Sunday, via Ken Gurnick of MLB.com:

Our organization is proud of the way Chase plays,” Mattingly said. “We love the way he plays. He’s got a reputation for playing the game right, playing it hard, and we’re behind him 100 percent.”

Mattingly added he’s aware the attention is unlikely to subside any time soon and believes the situation would be different if reversed:

If it would have been their guy, they would be saying, David Wright, hey, he’s a gamer; he went after him. That’s the way you gotta play. But it’s our guy; it’s different. So I know how the, kind of, the New York media gets a little bit going, and it gets dramatic, but for me you can’t have it both ways. If David would have did it, it wouldn’t have been any problem here in New York.”

Given that Monday’s Game 3 is the first of the playoffs at Citi Field this year, both rosters will be announced prior to first pitch. That certainly will give the Mets’ faithful ample opportunity to shout their vitriol in Utley’s direction.

Utley thus far in the NLDS has solely been used as a pinch-hitter and is 1-for-2. Despite batting a career .333/.429/.556 against Matt Harvey in 18 at-bats, Utley is not in the lineup.

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About The Author

Deborah is currently a junior Communications journalism major at College of The Canyons in Santa Clarita, CA. She interned for a year at SCVTV and served as their first high school sideline reporter. Deborah grew up playing sports her entire life and has always had a passion for writing. She plans to attend the University of Tennessee in the Spring.

4 Responses

  1. movonup

    Mattingly needs to show some nads and have Utley start at 2nd. Have him bat 2nd. too. He’s got great numbers against Harvey and if he’s three feet inside his head….even better. Harvey’s hinting at retaliation, get Utley in this game…..go Dodgers!

    Reply
    • Michael Hudgens

      Disagree on strategy but agree with you on a stick it to them attitude. Use Utley when the situation is right. lets say its 2-2 top of the 9th with 2 runners on. I say send Utley to pinch hit. What you gonna do hit him great thanks! bases loaded…Or any other situation like that that gives us an advantage.

      Reply
      • movonup

        I like that idea. I’ll bet if the late, great Billy Martin was coaching he’d do it. Of course he’d probably be drunk or hungover. After the way Harvey has been hinting at retaliation, I want to see how he would handle that pressure.

        3 feet inside Harvey’s head. Go Blue!

      • Michael Hudgens

        This is why I LOVE pitchers Batting! He wont do anything early! If he does it will be before he is replaced by a mid re leaver. So he doesn’t come to bat after he hits someone. Truthfully, I see nothing happening tonight…I do when the Dodgers are closing the series out tomorrow and it being a melee in front of the ass New York fans

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