NL East Notes: Chipper, Blanton, Utley

Baseball America recently ranked all 30 organizations based on how much talent has passed through their systems since the end of the 2008 season and the Nationals and Braves place third and sixth, respectively. The Marlins (11th) and Phillies (12th) were also better than average, but the Mets were 28th. Here are today's NL East-related links…

  • The Phillies are less motivated to trade Joe Blanton than they were earlier in the spring, when Joel Pineiro was around, Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com reports (Twitter links).
  • The Phillies are cautiously optimistic about Chase Utley and hopeful that Ryan Howard will play in early May, Knobler writes.
  • Braves third baseman Chipper Jones told reporters that his upcoming retirement will be final, ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick writes (Twitter link). "I'm very comfortable with this decision and I'm ready to stick to it," Jones said this morning while discussing his decision.

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