Phillies place Chase Utley on 15-day DL with ankle inflammation
Utley’s ankle has been an ongoing issue, causing him to miss a portion of spring training earlier this year.
Utley received a cortisone shot in the ankle on Wednesday and did not play in the team’s 11-8 win against the New York Yankees.
"Obviously, it's been bothering me for a little while. Most players have aches and pains through the year,” Utley said. “So I'm not shocked with that. It's really showing no improvement. So I think it's a good time to get it right. We'll take a little time off, and hopefully that will get it squared away."
Utley, a six-time All-Star, has just five hits in his last 54 at-bats and is hitting .179 with four home runs, 25 RBIs and a .532 OPS in 65 games this season. His batting average and OPS rank dead last in all of baseball among qualified hitters.
Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said he was a “little bit surprised” by Utley’s DL stint, because he had not been told anything was wrong with him.
“But the way that he's moved around and run the bases and run hard and played defense, I don't think it was holding him back all that much, in my opinion," Sandberg said. "But to have it bothering now -- as he said it has kind of crept up on him to the point of getting it rechecked and re-evaluated -- that's what he feels."
Utley, 36, is making $15 million this season and also a $15 million club option for next season that automatically vests if he reaches 500 plate appearances. Utley has 249 plate appearances through the first 73 games of the season.
- Scooby Axson