Chase Utley has led all of baseball in getting hit by pitches in each of the last two seasons. By a lot. All of the Minnesota Twins, for example, combined to be hit 36 times in 2008, which is nine more than the 27 times Utley was hit. He was hit 12 more times than any other player in the National League. In 2007 he also led both leagues, hit 25 times.

All that isn’t good for a lot of reasons. It is good for your on-base percentage, though. Here’s what Utley’s actual numbers for 2008, what they would have been if the 27 plate appearances in which he was hit by a pitch never happened and what they would have been if in the 27 plate appearances in which he was hit he wasn’t hit but instead continued to have offensive results at the same rate that he had for the rest of the season:

  PA AB H 2B 3B HR BB HBP AVG OBP SLG
Actual 707 607 177 41 4 33 64 27 .292 .380 .535
HBP never happened 680 607 177 41 4 33 64 0 .292 .355 .535
Other result instead of HBP 707 631 184 43 4 34 67 0 .292 .355 .535

All those HBP were good for 25 points of on-base percentage. They were in 2007, too:

  PA AB H 2B 3B HR BB HBP AVG OBP SLG
Actual 613 530 176 48 5 22 50 25 .332 .410 .566
HBP never happened 588 530 176 48 5 22 50 0 .332 .385 .566
Other result instead of HBP 613 553 183 50 5 23 52 0 .332 .385 .566

I’m pretty sure you don’t want Utley getting hit by pitches at the rate he is, even for 25 points of on-base percentage. The other thing that surprising is the .355 on-base percentage for 2008 in the plate appearances where he was not hit by a pitch. Ryan Howard, for example, had a .336 on-base percentage in 2008 in his plate appearances where he was not hit by a pitch — the difference between their actual on-base percentages, .385 to .339, was much larger.

Utley has been hit by a pitch at a higher rate than notable hit-by-pitchee Craig Biggio (who is second on the career leaders in hit by pitch) over his career:

Player Career PA Career HBP % of PA
HBP
Utley 3,126 83 2.66
Craig Biggio 12,504 285 2.28

The most alarming part of the problem for Utley, which I’ll discuss more in another post, is that the rate at which he has been hit by pitches has risen dramatically over the past two seasons.

Phillies fans will get a chance to pose with the World Series trophy this weekend.

Kevin Towers says we should know if there’s a Peavy deal today. This suggests that Scott Hairston may be a player targeted by the Phillies.

The Phillies extended Charlie Manuel’s contract through 2011. That’s good news for Phillies fans cause I don’t think there’s anyone who could have gotten more out of the recent Phillies teams than Manuel did.

This says the Phillies are close to signing Chan Ho Park.

The Phillies traded Jason Jaramillo for 27-year-old right-handed hitting catcher Ronny Paulino. Paulino has a 278/331/382 line in 1,021 career at-bats, all of which came with the Pirates. He’s a good bet to take Chris Coste’s roster spot. He pounds lefties, 355/417/498 against them for his career. In 2008 he hit just 212/277/305 in 118 at-bats for the Pirates. He was sent down to the minors in early June and hit 302/365/525 in 139 at-bats in the Gulf Coast League and International League combined, missing about a month and a half with an injury to his right ankle. He was back with the Pirates in September. After the season he went to the Dominican Winter League and hit very well, 310/468/707 with six home runs in 58 at-bats. Some have questioned his work ethic or suggested that Paulino’s attitude and level of effort contributed to his demotion to the minors in ’08.

The Phillies seem to have very few problems with getting an effort out of their players. I’d be surprised if Paulino’s effort proves to be an issue. Nifty deal for the Phils. Not much to complain about in the Amaro era yet. We’ll keep looking, though, so check back often.