Chase Utley understands what awaits him on Friday in New York. He does not welcome it, but he does not fear it. He accepts the incoming vitriol as penance for a sin he did not intend.
Months ago, he identified the broken leg of Ruben Tejada as an unintended byproduct of the spirit that has defined Utley’s career. He cannot bend time and undo the damage. He can only swallow regret.
“Looking back on it, knowing that he was going to spin, he wasn’t going to get off his feet, I would have done things differently, knowing that he was going to get hurt,” Utley said earlier this week. “But I can’t take that back. So I imagine the fans will let me have it.”