Originally posted on Baseball Professor  |  Last updated 1/24/13
Chase Utley hit 38 homers over the last three years, a period in which injuries have limited him to just 301 games. That’s a rate of almost exactly 19 homers per 150 games. The Utley of old was good for 30+ homers per 150 games, but the older Utley of recent memory is not the Utley of old. The new, older Utley (confused yet?) has become a different, more patient hitter. His three best K:BB ratios have come in the last three years, and twice he’s had a perfect 1:1 ratio. In fact, Utley’s 0.95 K:BB ratio since the start of 2010 ranks 10th among the 351 batters to tally at least 600 total plate appearances over that span. And last year Utley’s 21.4% line drive rate and great 1.00 K:BB ratio yielded an expected batting average of .304 with an expected BABIP of .321. Instead, he stumbled to a .256 average thanks to a .261 BABIP. I’m not ready to write Utley off yet, but 2013 will be his last chance to prove he’s worth ranking among the top 150. At a Glance Strengths: K, BB, OBP Neutral: R, HR, RBI, SB, BA, SLG, OPS Weaknesses: GP Player Comparisons Best-case scenario: Dustin Pedroia (BOS) Likely scenario: Ben Zobrist (TB), Brandon Phillips (CIN), Neil Walker (PIT) Worst-case scenario: Kelly Johnson (TOR) Chase Utley 2013 Fantasy Projection Predictive stats like xBA and xBABIP should be relied upon only so much, so I’d caution anyone who wants to take those numbers and run with a .300+ projected average in 2013, but the point is Utley’s peripherals indicate he still has some gas left in the tank. He just has to keep himself on the field. And that’s one area where we decide to play it safe. It might seem pessimistic to project Utley for just 125 games this year, but if he does play that many games it would represent his highest total in the last four years. Projecting injuries is never fun as Utley could stay healthy for 145 games and put up a .280/25/100 season or get hurt and wind up with a .260/12/65 line, so how much you value him comes down to how risk-averse you are. Personally, if I’m taking a chance on a high-risk, high-reward player, it’s generally with a young player who’s best-case scenario hinges on him playing at a high level rather than staying healthy. There’s nothing worse in fantasy than getting stuck with a player who plays great when he’s on the field but can’t be counted upon to actually be on the field. Give me a bust any day; at least in their case I can have no questions about dropping them. But a player who plays great but could go down at any given moment and leave me scrambling? That’s a player I don’t want any part of. While we project Utley to finish as a borderline top-100 option, that’s honestly just a guess. I feel confident in our per-game projections from him, but it’s the number of game’s that’s completely up in the air. Tweet
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Auburn legend Bo Jackson using Heisman vote for Alabama star

Gronk: Tom Brady doesn't age, seems like he's in his 20s

Cam Newton says Greg Hardy was a 'great teammate'

Ohio State plans to end Mirror Lake jump tradition after death

WATCH: Jason Kidd ejected for swiping ball out of ref's hands

Brad Stevens: Celtics had 'real conversations' after loss to Hawks


Les Miles unsure about his future at LSU

Saban will not rule out Kenyan Drake for Iron Bowl

Andre Drummond responds to Khris Middleton saying he doesn’t like contact

Lacking Jazz: Why Utah’s offense has struggled this season

Magic to bench Victor Oladipo, start Channing Frye

10 unheralded NFL players set to make a major impact in Week 12

Brady: Few have more respect for Peyton Manning than me

WATCH: Marcus Foligno flips Carter Hutton

Blaine Gabbert was only person at his press conference

Report: Alabama DC Kirby Smart a front-runner for South Carolina job

Kristaps Porzingis really wants to meet Turtle from ‘Entourage’

Top storyline for each Week 12 NFL game

WATCH: Ref injures Yakupov's leg by pulling him down

Ryan Fitzpatrick shaves beard to ‘switch up the mojo’

Bedlam is bigger than ever, but which team will be better than ever?

5 outrageous predictions for Week 12 of the NFL season

How the Detroit Lions became the face of football on Thanksgiving Day

The 10 most disappointed fan bases of the 2015 college football season

Jimmy Butler wants Mason Plumlee to pay his $2,500 fine

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Top storyline for each Week 12 NFL game

Top 10 matchups for Week 12 of the NFL season

The 10 most disappointed fan bases of the 2015 CFB season

Gronk: Takes mental toughness not to overeat on Thanksgiving

Blue Jays fans create website in effort to keep David Price

The five most overrated teams in the Week 13 coaches' poll

10 storylines for Week 13 of the college football season

Ranking the 10 best games of 2015 college football rivalry week

Examining the Mavericks' hot start

Johnny Bench(ed): Manziel demoted to third string

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker