Now when I thought of this project, I thought it would be fun to mix and match some guys from different decades and see how this team would come together. Well, during the actual project, I felt it to be like filling out a college basketball pool, with constant changes and updates. And then John threw a wrench into my plans saying I not only needed a starting 9 but a couple spare players as well. He also ruled that I couldn’t use 2010 as a decade since the season hasn’t started yet, which really made life hard on me.
Without further ado, here is my All Time Phillies team only using one player per decade.
Starting Right Handed Pitcher Grover Cleveland Alexander (representing the 1910s)
Ol’ Pete, as he was called, was an easy selection for the team. Over the span of seven years with the club (excluding his return in 1930) from 1911-17, Alexander lead the league in wins five times, topping 30 wins three times, including a career high of 33 in 1916. All in all, he amassed 190 of his 373 wins as a Phil, and has a Phillies career ERA of 2.18.
Starting Left Handed Pitcher Steve Carlton (1970s)
Another slam dunk choice. When he was dealt from St. Louis, the Phillies stunk. Really bad. Matter of fact, they only won 59 games the whole season. Lefty won 27 of those himself, with a league leading ERA of 1.97, earning the first of the four Cy Youngs in his career. He was selected to the All Star team seven times as a Phil, four of which came in the 70s.
Relief Pitcher Turk Farrell (1960s)
Now this one was a little tough because relief pitchers have only come into the spotlight in the last half of the century, which really limits the options. Plus with the limits on picking one player per decade really made things even tighter. This pick is kind of cheap, as Turk only played four seasons in the ’60s with the Phils (60-61, 68-69) and his only All Star appearance as a Phil was in 1958. However, he had a good year in 1960, saving 11 games, winning 10 more while posting an ERA of 2.70. For his Phillies career, he saved 65 games over nine years with an ERA of 3.25.
Catcher Mike Lieberthal (1990s)
Arguably the greatest Phillies catcher of them all, Lieby had some nice years for the Fightins’. For the better part of the decade, he was the backstop for the Phils, usually a lone bright star on some bad teams. His best year was in 1999 when he hit .300 with 30 HR, 96 RBI, while being an All-Star and winning a Gold Glove. For his thirteen year Phillies career, Lieby hit 150 HRs while batting a solid .275 as a two time All-Star.
First Baseman Ryan Howard (2000s)
Winning Rookie of the Year and MVP qualifies Howard to be on this roster. In his short time as a Phillie, he already has smashed the team record of HRs in a season (58), while leading the league in RBI three out of his first four full years in the majors. Howard already is sixth in club history in HR (222), and probably will take over the 2nd spot by the end of the year.
Second Baseman Nap Lajoie (1890s)
This spot would probably be Chase Utley’s had I been allowed to use the 2010 decade, but using a Hall of Famer is not too shabby, even if he became a star while playing in Cleveland. While as a Phil, Lajoie lead the league in doubles (43) and RBI (127) in 1898. The year prior he lead the league in Slugging (.569).
Shortstop Granny Hamner (1940s)
Although Granny played most of his Phillies career during the 1950s, and was a key piece of the Whiz Kids, he is eligible for the 1940s, playing parts of six seasons in the decade. A three time all-star between 1952-54, Hamner knocked in 703 RBI for the club in 1501 games. He was also named Captain of the club in 1952, showing his leadership.
Third Baseman Mike Schmidt (1980s)
Yeah, like the best player in Phillies history isn’t going to be on this team. He won three MVPs in the decade, including a monster year in 1980 leading the club to a World Series victory, setting a then-club record of 48 HR, and also knocking in 131 RBI. He won nine straight Gold Gloves (10 total) and was selected All-Star 12 times.
Outfielder Chuck Klein (1930s)
Klein was the basher for the Phillies in the 1930s, mashing 243 career HR for the club, including an MVP year in 1932, when he hit 38 HR (lead league), 137 RBI, and stole 20 bases (also lead league). He lead the league in HR four times during his tenure, including 43 in 1929. He also knocked in a career high 170 RBI the following year.
Outfielder Richie Ashburn (1950s)
Probably the most beloved Phillie of all time, Whitey was a four time all star and hit a nice career .311 for the club. The Hall of Famer had over 2200 hits for the Phillies, and was regarded as a very good fielder in his time. He was routinely in the top of the league in hits and batting average.
Outfielder Ed Delahanty (1900s)
Big Ed had his best years in the 1890s, but had a nice 1900 and 01 when he knocked in 109 and 108 RBI respectively. During thirteen years with the Phils, he knocked in 1288 RBI leading the league 3 times, including a career high 146 RBI in 1893. Even though he was a good player in his time, his legend is moreso for his mysterious death than his on-field performance.
Bench Player Outfielder Cy Williams (1920s)
Acquired from the Cubs in 1918, Williams made a name for himself in the Roaring Twenties, hitting 217 HR as a Phil, including a career high 41 in 1923, and leading the league in 1927 with 30 HR.
Manager Harry Wright (1880s)
In 10 years managing the Quakers/Phillies, Wright amassed 636 wins and a .529 winning percentage. However, his teams never finished higher than 2nd, as they did in 1887, with a 75-48 record. He’s also a Hall of Famer in the pioneer/excutive division.