Utley has yet to play during the 2012 season while recovering from offseason knee surgery and the Phillies hope he can make an immediate impact on a team that sits near the bottom of the NL East with a 36-40 record–eight games behind the first-place Washington Nationals. The defending NL East Champions have gotten off to a disappointing start to the 2012 season while dealing with key injuries to numerous key players, but it’s a good sign to see Utley back this early considering the original plan was to have him return next week when the team was playing the New York Mets.
It may take some time for him to return to his old dominant self, but Utley’s return to the lineup is a huge move for a team that has been struggling as much as the Phillies. At this point, this team will take any help they can get to bounce back and go for their sixth-straight division title.
Now that Utley’s back, let’s see how long it takes for Ryan Howard to get healthy enough to return to the lineup so the Phillies can finish the second half of the season on a stronger note compared to the first half–which obviously wouldn’t take much to accomplish.
Dan Parzych is the Director of Content for RantSports.com
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