July 30, 2018
By: Erica Rose
Last week we went to our first Phillies game of the year and we chose that one for a few reasons. First, it was an afternoon game, which was featuring a run the bases after for the kids. But, the other was because they were playing the Dodgers, which meant it would be the last time to see Chase Utley. Utley was my favorite Phillie, as he was for many women! Yes his good looks were a definite plus, but Utley was also a hit with the men too due to his hard work and talent. Fortunately for us, Utley played in the game and at the end he came out for a curtain call. Seeing the respect he received from the crowd was really overwhelming. The Phillies played his song each time he came up to bat, and the fans gave him a much deserved ovation every time (on a side note they also cheered when he popped up or struck out!) but what is just as special is the fact that he respects us Philly fans just as much. Utley announced his retirement earlier this year, for one reason - to let Phillies fans know it would be his last time playing at Citizens Bank Park (unless they meet in the playoffs of course.)
In his press conference prior to the series Utley talked about getting chills just by talking about being here; and seeing him in person also brought back those chills for me. As I was sitting at the game a lot of memories came rushing back. It’s hard to believe we were watching the Phillies win a World Series 10 years ago. I remember it like it was yesterday. Fortunately, my husband and I were able to attend one of the NLCS games that year, ironically they went up against the Dodgers, and the electricity in the building is something I will never forget.
Chase is not the only one retiring. Sadly, it is the end of an era. Shane Victorino, Jimmy Rollins, Carlos Ruiz, and Brad Lidge are just a few others on the roster who are retired or retiring in the very near future.
I will wrap this up by saying: Chase Utley you are STILL the man.