AARON BRACY, Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Chase Utley added another memorable moment to his career in Philadelphia — almost a year after he last wore a Phillies uniform.

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Utley got curtain calls after each of his two home runs — including a grand slam — in his first game at Citizens Bank Park since being traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers last Aug. 19. Those cheers came after fans greeted him with a 1 1/2-minute ovation before he struck out leading off the Dodgers’ 15-5 rout of the Phillies on Tuesday night.

“It’s completely overwhelming,” Utley said. “The standing ovation my first at-bat is something I’ll never forget. It was truly special.”

Utley was a six-time All-Star in 13 seasons as Philadelphia’s second baseman, helping the team win five straight NL East titles and the 2008 World Series. Fans showed their appreciation with four standing ovations.

“It’s something you can’t really describe in words,” Utley said. “It’s a special feeling to see the fans show that much support.”

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In the fifth, Utley hit a two-out solo homer off Vince Velasquez (8-5) and raced around the bases in customary fashion. Fans clamored for a rare curtain call by a visiting player, and Utley obliged to another standing ovation.

In the seventh, Utley hit a grand slam off Michael Mariot, and fans again cheered him back out of the dugout. It was Utley’s seventh career grand slam. His first career hit was a slam at Veterans Stadium.

“It’s just good to be back,” he said. “I tried to downplay it as much as possible, but it’s been something I’ve been looking forward to for a long time.”

The win even helped propel the Dodgers into first place in the NL West when the Giants lost to the Pirates later Tuesday.

“It couldn’t have been scripted any better,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.

Utley’s presence put a buzz in Philadelphia’s ballpark during what’s been a lackluster season. Fans applauded when he jogged to the outfield for warmups, and he twice stopped to sign autographs between conversations with former teammate Ryan Howard in center field. There were signs throughout the ballpark welcoming Utley back.

“We had a lot of great times here at this stadium,” Utley said prior to the game. “I spent so much time here, so many great memories. I can’t really say enough about the support I received. Obviously we had some great players and great coaches, but the fans kind of took us to the next level.”

As Utley hit leadoff wearing his familiar No. 26, public address announcer Dan Baker introduced him to shouts and applause, including from players on both teams. Utley doffed his helmet and waved to the crowd, and when he tried to step to the plate, fans continued their ovation. Plate umpire Ron Kulpa moved to clean home plate while Utley stepped out again, touching his heart and raising his fist in appreciation.

“I truly believe without their support and without them pushing us to be better, we would not have had the team that we had,” Utley said of the fans.

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Utley never got a chance to acknowledge the fans after the trade because it wasn’t finalized until after that night’s game.

“I didn’t really have an opportunity to say goodbye,” Utley said. “If I were to write up a script (last year), it would have gone a bit differently.”

He departed the Phillies after playing 1,551 games, compiling 1,623 hits, 142 homers and 916 RBIs. Utley remains one of the most beloved Philadelphia athletes ever for his talent, hustle and grit.

“There are so many times I’d meet a father with his son, or even a mother, who would praise the way I played and would tell me they want their son to play that way,” Utley said. “To me, that’s a true compliment.”


Kenta Maeda (12-7) allowed two runs and three hits in six innings with nine strikeouts and one walk for the Dodgers.


Howie Kendrick had four hits, including a home run and a triple, and drove in three runs and Yasmani Grandal homered and had three hits for Los Angeles.


Howard and Cameron Rupp went deep for the Phillies, who had won four straight.


Dodgers: Los Angeles reinstated RHP Casey Fien (right elbow tendinitis) from the 15-day DL. Fein, who is 0-1 with a 4.09 ERA, last pitched on July 16. … 3B Justin Turner returned to the lineup after missing two games due to a right hand contusion.

Phillies: Velasquez appeared to be favoring his left side in his final inning. He limped off the field when manager Pete Mackanin removed him from the game. Velasquez had a stint on the DL from June 10-27 for a right biceps injury.


Dodgers LHP Scott Kazmir (9-6, 4.44) faces Phillies RHP Jake Thompson (1-1, 8.68) in the second matchup of the three-game series.

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