Chase Utley: My Fantasy Team Dream

Will ShafferCorrespondent IJune 9, 2008

My best fantasy team is now 7-3 and I don't know where it'd be without Chase Utley.

The Dude is killing the ball all over the place.

Currently he's sporting a .316 average with 21 bombs, 51 runs scored and 56 RBI—numbers many other players would happily take at season's end.

Overall, he has accumulated 311 points for my fantasy club and the All-Star Game at Yankee Stadium, the mid-point of the long season, is still more than a month away. The possibility of a 1,000 point fantasy season for the man exists and that's straight sick.

Chase has exceeded even my own expectations. I watched the kid's numbers from the moment the Phils drafted him at number fifteen in the first round of the 2000 draft. His college numbers were gaudy, so expectations were already high for the kid.

Here we are, eight years later, and Chase looks to be a lock for not only the All-Star Game, but also the NL MVP. When he's hot he can hit home runs five days in a row, or more.

When he's not, there's the consistent aspect of his game, which I view as Jeter-like, that still produces timely big hits and loads of runs scored and RBI. He almost is like the Phillies version of Derek Jeter, only younger with more power and from the left side of the dish.

Chase has been a staple on my fantasy team all year. With a strong supporting caste, the team is tough as nails to beat. This team was without Jorge Posada for much of the season and should only receive a lift from his return—although Chris Coste, even with reduced playing time compared to Posada's, did an excellent job as a fill in.

The rest of the team is an interesting mix: a platoon at first base between the red-hot Jason Giambi and the highly talented Derek Lee. At short-stop is the captain himself, Derek Jeter. Aramis Ramirez mans my 3B post. My outfield is a hodgepodge of new and different guys like Ryan Ludwick, Carlos Quentin, and Nate McLouth. The backups are hard not to start with Kosuke Fukudome and Juan Pierre.

My pitching has been either the Phillies' or Yankees', as I live and die my fantasy dreams through their success or failures each week.

So far my fantasy dreams have been warm sweet ones with this team.

In first place with a nice three game lead over the second place team in my division, this group is almost a lock to make the playoffs once the fantasy season ends in seven weeks.

Who knows how far this team will go?

The only definitive is this: with Chase Utley on my team, the sky is the limit. Thank you Chase Utley, for being awesome this season.