Chase Utley sees similarities between current Phillies and his 2011 team

Philadelphia Phillies

London time is five hours ahead of Philadelphia time, but Chase Utley still likes to check in on his former team. He can’t watch many games, but he likes to watch highlights in the morning, just to see how the Phillies are doing.

Lately, they are doing well. Historically well. Unlike the teams of previous seasons, these Phillies are not slow starters. They’ve won 31 of their first 44 games — becoming the 17th National League club in history to do so — and haven’t lost a series since April 1-3 against Cincinnati.

It is still early, but the iconic Phillies second baseman can see the parallels between this team and the 2011 team.

» READ MORE: Marcus Hayes: Believe in these Phillies, because that’s the entire point. Bryce Harper agrees (but he gets it)

“Of course [I see the parallels],” Utley said. “They’re a very talented team, not only offensively but they have guys on the mound that can mow through a lineup, right? So yes, there’s definitely some similarities. Being around the guys the last couple days and knowing what I know, it’s a good group of guys.

“They get along, they care, they want to win, they’re pulling the same way on the rope. And that’s important, especially throughout the course of the season, that’s important to have that type of chemistry in the clubhouse. So I’m happy that they’ve found that. They’ve had it for the last few years, so I’m excited to see them continue it.”

He can see some Roy Halladay in Zack Wheeler, and some Cliff Lee in Ranger Suárez, but most of all, he can see a group that is motivated, experienced, and hyper-focused on one thing.

“It does remind me of a time when we were going on our run, we were all kind of similar ages, we all had the same goal,” he said. “And we had some success. We had some learning experiences that led to some success. So, you know, I wouldn’t be surprised to see these guys in the World Series again.”

Utley was in town to promote the upcoming London Series against the Mets in June. He was asked an array of questions. Many of them were centered around his current feelings about the Mets, a team that he loudly proclaimed he hated five years ago.

He did not express similar sentiments this time around, but when asked if he was doing any promotional work at Citi Field, he gave a candid answer.

“I am doing no promotional work at Citi Field,” he said, adding: “No, I never got a phone call.”

Utley is working at the MLB’s office in London and is his enjoying his life there, but he said he’d be interested in working at the major league level with a team at some point. He said he’d also be interested in a managerial role down the road, but isn’t quite ready yet.

“There could be a time,” Utley said. “That time is not now. Again, to be good at it, it consumes a lot of your [time] and raising two young boys, I’m not quite ready for that. Let’s talk in like 10 years.”

» READ MORE: Enjoying life in London, Chase Utley is proud of his career — whether he’s voted into the Hall of Fame or not

There’s no rush. For now, Utley will continue to start his days with Phillies highlights, until June 8 and 9, when they are in his backyard.

Extra bases

Trea Turner (left hamstring strain) continued his rehab progression. Manager Rob Thomson said he has done “really well” but that the Phillies still don’t have a time table on his return. “Now, he’s hitting in the cage, he’s long-tossing, he took ground balls today. He’s come along just fine,” Thomson said …. Second baseman Bryson Stott was out of the lineup. Thomson said it was unrelated to him getting hit by a pitch in the sixth inning of last night’s game. “It’s just a day [off],” Thomson said.

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