Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Chase Utley is accustomed to getting hit by pitches, but his most recent one against the San Diego Padres set a personal milestone. Bryan Mitchell plunked Utley with one out in the second inning.
It was the 200th time in Utley’s career he was hit by a pitch, and 27th since joining the Dodgers in a midseason trade from the Philadelphia Phillies in 2015. Utley is the active leader in hit by pitches by a wide margin.
Texas Rangers outfielder Shin-Soo Choo currently ranks second with 123, while Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim first baseman Albert Pujols is next on the list with 102.
Furthermore, Utley ranks eighth all-time in hit by pitches. The leader, Hughie Jennings holds the record with 287. Though, Houston Astros Hall-of-Famer Craig Biggio owns the modern record with 285.
From 2007-09, as a member of the Phillies, Utley led the Majors each year in hit by pitches. During that span, he was hit by a pitch 76 times. Utley’s personal-high for a single season was 27, which occurred in 2008.
Utley has also been hit by a pitch eight times in 68 postseason games. His most recent one, in Game 6 of the 2017 World Series against Astros right-hander Justin Verlander, sparked a rally that ultimately allowed the Dodgers to take the lead in the sixth inning.
Although some of it relies on a pitcher lacking command, Utley has developed a habit of welcoming being hit by a pitch. So much so that he often will step across the plate if necessary.