|(photo by USAToday Sports/Jayne Kamin-Oncea)|
With once full swoosh and clunk Chase Utley has forever marked himself in baseball lore as a hero and villian all in one. It all depends on which coast you live. That decisive take out slide may be talked about for decades. The question that remains is: Was it enough to turn the Dodgers fortunes around?
Ruben Tejada is out for the remainder of the year with a broken fibula. The Dodgers have life again as they travel to NYC with a series split, and they have a renewed energy and life that had not been seen in the first 15 innings of the NLDS.
As Chase Utley was crucified on the TBS post game show for his "dirty" play, I seemed to think back to 2013 as the major Dodger offensive threat had been neutralized by a 95+ mph fastball to the ribs. What goes around seems to eventually come around. Baseball is a game where things eventually even themselves out and as New Yorkers complain about being treated "unfairly" it reminds me of 1973 when a Dodger team finished second in the NL West with 95 wins and was forced to watch an 83 win Met team play in the post season.
Things aren't always fair folks, and Utley's slide, (which was late by all means), was done within the current rules of the game. Tejada turned his back in the play, assuming that he could perform a pirouette throw to first to turn a game saving twin killing. As a middle infielder, you never turn your back on a player barreling down on you to break up a double play. I'm not saying the man deserved to be injured, but his actions placed him in a vulnerable spot.
Chase Utley did his job, and for that he will be remembered forever in Dodger history. How much so only time will tell, but if the Dodgers win it all, the "slide heard round he world"will be talked about for decades.
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