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09/14/12 8:10 PM ET

Utley takes some grounders at third

HOUSTON -- Chase Utley took some groundballs at third base again before Friday's game, but manager Charlie Manuel doesn't expect to play Utley at the hot corner in the stretch run.

"Not right now," Manuel said. "Sooner or later, I'll talk to him and see where he's at."

Manuel did say that he wouldn't be surprised if Utley improved defensively at third base very quickly. He's been taking grounders at third for a couple weeks now.

"He'll work until he gets it," Manuel said.

Utley has never played at third base in his 10-year Major League career. He did play 123 games at third base in 2002 for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, making 28 errors.

Rollins' aggressive approach pays off on basepaths

HOUSTON -- With two outs in the eighth inning on Thursday, Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins, on second base, decided to try to steal third.

It wasn't a typical time to try that kind of move, but with Astros reliever Wesley Wright not paying close attention, Rollins beat his throw over easily.

Manager Charlie Manuel is quite all right with Rollins' aggressive nature on the basepaths, even in non-typical stealing situations. The veteran shortstop has stolen third base 11 times this year, which ranked third in the Majors heading into Friday's games.

"He knows what he's doing," Manuel said. "He'll get thrown out sometimes when he's not supposed to, but that's also the chance you take."

Only the Blue Jays' Rajai Davis (17) and the A's Coco Crisp (12) have stolen third more times this season. Davis and Crisp have each been caught trying to steal third, though, while Rollins hasn't in 2012.

For his career, Rollins has stolen third base 81 times and only been caught 11 times, good for an 88 percent success rate. His career success rate stealing second base is 82 percent.

Manuel mentioned how some of the Phillies' former baserunning threats -- Jayson Werth and Shane Victorino among them -- also had the freedom to take a few risks on the basepaths.

"We knew that sometimes if we take chances, you'll get thrown out in a tough time," Manuel said. "There will be talk. It'll open up some second guessing for you. At the same time, as long we have a high stolen base percentage like we did, that's kind of a chance you take."

The Phillies have led the National League in stolen base percentage every year since 2007. They have been successful 83 percent of the time in 2012, which leads the National League.

Worth noting

• Phillipe Aumont, who pitched five times in the last five days, wasn't available on Friday. B.J. Rosenberg went two innings on Thursday and wouldn't be used outside of an emergency-type situation, manager Charlie Manuel said.

• Catcher Carlos Ruiz, still recovering from plantar fasciitis in his right foot, started Friday's game and will probably start Sunday's game. Manuel was asked if he would consider playing Ruiz more regularly than every other day after Sunday.

"We'll still have to watch him some," Manuel said. "What he's got, if it's not completely well, if he stays on it a lot, it'll definitely come back."

Clark Goble is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.