Phillies decide not to play Chase Utley at third base after all

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The Phillies have decided to put on hold the experiment of trying Chase Utley at third base before the season ends, and it sounds like the team has soured on the idea of making it a full-time switch next year.

Moving Utley to third and putting Freddy Galvis at second would really only make sense for the Phillies if they’re convinced it’d help Utley stay healthy. Despite his knee problems, Utley remains a find defender at second, and Galvis was a pretty brutal hitter even before getting hurt and being suspended for PEDs this year. The team would likely be best served by keeping Utley at second, bringing in a decent regular for third and letting Galvis serve as middle-infield insurance.

Kendrys Morales pitched a scoreless inning Sunday

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Nothing went right for the Blue Jays this weekend. The club was swept in a four-game series against the Athletics, including a 9-2 loss on Sunday. Not wanting to burn out his bullpen in a lopsided game — and perhaps thinking about the general entertainment value involved — Blue Jays manager John Gibbons decided to send designated hitter Kendrys Morales out to pitch the ninth inning. And in typical baseball fashion, he saw better results than some of the dudes who do this all the time.

Morales, who actually pitched in Cuba nearly 20 years ago, worked around a walk for a scoreless inning. He induced three fly outs and topped out at 87.4 mph on his fastball, per Brooks Baseball. He received a standing ovation on the way back to the dugout. Morales hasn’t been hearing that sort of thing for his contributions with the bat recently.

Morales, 34, is batting just .163/.248/.279 with three home runs through 32 games this season. There’s been some understandable clamoring for top prospect Vladmir Guerrero, Jr. to cut into his at-bats. For his part, Morales has been doing everything he can to break out of his slumber at the plate, including ditching the glasses he started wearing during spring training. Hey, whatever works. Morales also had two of Toronto’s four hits on Sunday.

On the heels of Morales’ first MLB appearance on the mound, it feels rather appropriate that the Blue Jays will get their first look at Angels sensation Shohei Ohtani — at least as a hitter — beginning on Tuesday.