Chase Utley did not participate in workouts today, and said he's not likely to play in games during the first week of exhibition play, either.
But it's nothing to be alarmed about, apparently. After the Phillies brief workout on Monday (they were scheduled to hit the links for the team's annual spring golf outing prior to 1 p.m.), Utley spoke to reporters in the middle of the clubhouse and was very comfortable and confident in where he's at a week into camp.
Utley arrived in Clearwater on Feb. 21. Two days later, he said he'd be somewhat limited at the start of camp after suffering a minor right ankle injury while taking ground balls on his own this winter.
"I feel better than when I got here for sure," Utley said Monday morning.
But it was a little curious that Utley wasn't on the field with the rest of his teammates during Monday's short workout. He had been taking regular batting and fielding practice with the rest of his teammates in the last week.
And his absence today came less than 24 hours after manager Ryne Sandberg said he wouldn't play in Tuesday's Grapefruit League opener against the Yankees in Clearwater.
The explanation: the Phillies had an MLB meeting sexual assault and domestic violence that went over 90 minute this morning. Since he was in the meeting, Utley was unable to do the early morning work (stretches, strengthening exercises) that have become a big part of his routine since dealing with knee injuries in the last half decade.
But where is Utley at with his ankle?
"I'm making a little progress," he said. "Obviously I wish it was a little quicker, but I'm trying to be smart about it. It seems like it's making some progressions every few days. As long as it continues to do that, I'd like to get out there as soon as possible."
Utley pointed his ankle out to reporters. It still looks swollen after rolling it over a baseball in January.
"It looks worse than it is," Utley said. "But it's not like it's (ready to go). There's no point balancing on it or jumping on it. If I start balancing on it and jumping on it, and this isn't ready, then something else is going to take the brunt of it, and I want to avoid (that). So that's where we're at. … (I'm doing) strengthening stuff, range-of-motion stuff. The real test is once you get on the field, you try to go on it in an athletic fashion. That's when you can tell where you're at. And I'm not quite there to go 100 percent yet. There's no sense in overdoing it and screwing something else up, especially when we have a month until the season starts."