Phillies Could Be Without All-Star Utley for Up to a Month With Broken Hand
By DAN GELSTON
PHILADELPHIA (AP) -Phillies All-Star second baseman Chase Utley had surgery on his right hand Friday and could miss a month of the season a day after his hand was broken when he was hit by a pitch.
Utley, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list, had a pin inserted into his hand during the surgery. Utley was hit in the fifth inning of Thursday's game by Washington's John Lannan, who was making his major league debut.
He finished the game, going 2-for-4, but X-rays afterward showed he broke his fourth metacarpal.
Utley said after Thursday's game that he didn't think he'd be sidelined for a month.
"I think it will be sooner than that," he said.
Utley is batting .336 with 41 doubles, 17 home runs and 82 RBIs this season.
Entering Friday, Utley led the National League in doubles, tied for the league lead in hits (134) and extra-base hits (61) and ranked second in total bases (232) and was third in RBIs.
Utley leads the majors with 17 hit by pitches this season. He was hit 14 times last season.
The Phillies purchased the contract of infielder/outfielder Joe Thurston from Triple-A Ottawa. Thurston hit a combined .278 with three home runs and 44 RBIs in 105 games in two levels in the minor leagues this season.
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said Abraham Nunez likely will replace Utley at second base. Nunez had been splitting time at third base with Greg Dobbs and Wes Helms.