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Philadelphia Phillies Wiretap

Howard, Utley Heading To Clearwater

Ryan Howard is heading to Clearwater on Sunday and Chase Utley could join him within a week as the two Philadelphia stars inch closer to a return.

Howard, the 2006 National League MVP, hasn't hit in two months since having a procedure to remove an infection near his surgically repaired left Achilles tendon.

Utley, the five-time All-Star second baseman, has been working out with a specialist in Arizona to strengthen his chronically bad knees.

Via Associated Press

Howard Sees Improvement, Hopes To Work Out Soon

Ryan Howard is confident he could begin working out soon after seeing a wound specialist on Friday.

The Phillies first baseman has been limited since Feb. 27, when he required a procedure to clean an infection from his original Achilles tendon surgery wound.

"The priority No. 1 was making sure the wound closed up so we didn't have it happen again and now we're in a place where we start to move forward," Howard said.

Howard said he has no date in mind for a return.

"Not really," he said. "Right now I want to get to Florida and see how my body and leg reacts to getting things back together."

Via Philadelphia Inquirer

Phillies Inquired About Inge During Spring Training

The Phillies had interest in trading for Brandon Inge during Spring Training, according to a report.

Detroit released Inge earlier this week and Philadelphia has struggled offensively.

Via Jon Paul Morosi/FOX Sports (via Twitter)

Phillies Could Play Utley At First Base

If Chase Utley returns to the Phillies before Ryan Howard does, there is a chance that he could spend some time at first base.

There is no formal timetable for either player as both undergo complex rehabilitation processes.

"We'll figure that out when we get there," manager Charlie Manuel said when asked if Utley could man first base. "When we have to decide on that, we will."

Utley has played 26 career games (22 starts) at first base in his career.

Via Philadelphia Inquirer

Howard Could Resume Activites Next Week

The Phillies are hoping that Ryan Howard will resume baseball activities next week.

Howard had surgery to repair a ruptured left Achilles in October, but suffered a significant setback in February when an infection developed.

The infection required a second surgical procedure, and the wound from that surgery still has not completely healed.

Howard visited a wound specialist Monday in Philadelphia.

"Ryan Howard's wound has gotten smaller and is healing," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said. "We've been advised to limit his activities for one more week to allow it to continue to heal. We hope that he will be able to restart his baseball activities thereafter."

Via MLB.com

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