In case you couldn’t tell from the name of our first child, Chase Utley was our favorite Phillies player. The second baseman always hustled and fit the hard working blue collar player Philly sports fans love. Utley wasn’t cocky or loud, just a quiet, consistent player who helped the Phillies win the World Series in 2008.
We were able to meet Chase Utley a few days after the funeral for my mom. Just being able to go to the Phillies game was a nice escape and outlet after roughly a week of dealing with mom’s death and then her funeral.
The Phillies have a meet the fans day and we had tickets for that game. You arrive as early as you can to line up down on the field and get to take pics and high five the Phillies players as they make their way around the field. Babies become a prop and are a way to get pics with the players and fortunately we had baby Chase with us and were able to score some great pics!
We were able to get pics with many of the players but two who hadn’t come to where we were yet were Utley and Ryan Howard when the PA announcer told fans to exit the field as the meet and greet was over. We noticed a few Phillies players stay on the field and Utley and Howard both did that.
I was so appreciative of these two stars actually taking the time to meet all the fans when they could easily have stopped where they were at when the PA announcer told the fans to exit. But no these players stayed and showed me why they were both so beloved and why they were both class acts.
When Utley got to us I was so star struck and made sure Chris was ready to get a pic. I said Hi Chase this is Chase while holding my little guy up and he lit up with a big smile when I said that. And that’s when we got this pic. Shortly after we got the pic we really wanted with Utley, we also got a great shot with Howard.
Coming so shortly after mom’s death, these pics and meeting the players meant so much. Chris and I had gone to so many Phillies games together (we had partial season tickets for a few years) that this was such a special opportunity for us with baby Chase.
As Philly fans, we don’t win much so the team that won the 2008 World Series is legendary because they brought us die hard fans a championship and brought me my first Philly sports championship.
The fact that two of the stars from this team stayed to greet all fans rather than worry about warming up for the game made me love them even more. These two weren’t just good players, they were good people. And all this coming a few days after mom’s funeral, when I could really use something uplifting to take my mind off everything, made it extra special. And this is why I look back on this memory so fondly, the day we met Chase Utley (and Ryan Howard).
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