There are two World Series MVPs in Philadelphia Phillies history, and Cole Hamels is one of them.
During the 2008 MLB playoffs, Hamels, just 24 at the time, came of age. Without much in the way of playoff-caliber rotation depth behind him, Hamels went 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA and 0.91 WHIP across 35 innings. Hamels won the NLCS MVP, an appetizer to the aforementioned hardware that he captured in the Fall Classic, as the Phillies won the second championship in their franchise's history.
A first-round pick in the 2002 MLB Draft, Hamels went 114-90 with a 3.30 ERA and 3.47 FIP in parts of 10 seasons with the Phillies. Hamels -- who tossed 200 or more innings in six different seasons as a Phillie -- was a three-time All-Star during his time in red pinstripes.
Hamels quite literally threw a no-hitter in his final start as a Phillie in July of 2015, days before he was traded to the Texas Rangers. It was the second no-hitter that the lefty was a part of with the Phillies, as he was the starting pitcher in a combined no-hitter that also included Jake Diekman, Ken Giles and Jonathan Papelbon in September of 2014.
There's no debate, Hamels is one of the greatest starting pitchers in franchise history. He's a lock to eventually be on the franchise's Wall of Fame, and we'll see if any other Phillie ever wears the No. 35 again.
Still, the Phillies are a franchise that began play in 1883. So Hamels finds himself among some incredible names -- Chuck Klein, Curt Schilling, Bobby Abreu, Sherry Magee and Dick Allen, just to name a few -- that fell just short of cracking our list of the nine greatest players in Phillies history:
9. Ryan Howard (2004-2016)
Best Season as a Phillie: 2006 - .313/.425/.659 with 58 home runs, 149 RBIs, 108 walks, 1.084 OPS, 167 OPS+ and a 5.9 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: .258/.343/.515 with 382 home runs, 1,194 RBIs, 709 walks, 1,475 hits, .859 OPS, 125 OPS+ and 19.6 fWAR
Cole Hamels, Bobby Abreu, Sherry Magee and Chuck Klein are among those in Phillies history with longer track records of All-Star-caliber production than Howard had. But despite being blocked by Jim Thome in his mid-20s and having his lower body break down in his early 30s, Howard's peak years were too impressive to leave him off this list. He won the National League Rookie of the Year Award in 2005, which he followed up by winning NL MVP in 2006. Between 2006 and 2011, Howard led baseball in both home runs (262) and RBIs (796). He set a Phillies single-season record with 58 home runs in 2006, and is second in franchise history with 382 career home runs.
8. Richie Ashburn (1948-1959)
Best Season as a Phillie: 1955 - .338/.449/.448 with three home runs, 42 RBIs, 105 walks, .897 OPS, 142 OPS+ and a 6.1 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: .311/.394/.388 with 22 home runs, 499 RBIs, 946 walks, 2,217 hits, .782 OPS, 111 OPS+ and 52.3 fWAR
Before he shared a broadcast booth with Hall of Famer Harry Kalas, Ashburn had a Hall of Fame playing career, with 12 of his 15 seasons spent with the Phillies. As a Phillie, Ashburn won two batting titles, and led the National League in triples twice, hits three times, walks three times and on-base percentage three times. Ashburn's No. 1 is retired by the Phillies.
7. Jimmy Rollins (2000-2014)
Best Season as a Phillie: 2007 - .296/.344/.531 with 30 home runs, 94 RBIs, 49 walks, .875 OPS, 119 OPS+ and a 6.5 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: .267/.327/.424 with 216 home runs, 887 RBIs, 753 walks, 2,306 hits, .751 OPS, 97 OPS+ and 49.0 fWAR
The greatest shortstop in franchise history, Rollins was a four-time Gold Glove Award winner, three-time All-Star and won the 2007 National League MVP Award. Rollins is the franchise's all-time leader with 2,306 hits, and also has the most doubles in Phillies history with 479. He was the catalyst for the team winning five consecutive NL East titles, two NL pennants and a World Series title during 2007-2011, which is considered by many to be the greatest era in franchise history.
6. Grover Cleveland Alexander (1911-1917; 1930)
Best Season as a Phillie: 1915 - 31-10 with a 1.22 ERA, 225 ERA+, 1.82 FIP, 0.842 WHIP, 241 strikeouts, 36 complete games and a 9.6 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: 190-91 with a 2.18 ERA, 140 ERA+, 2.38 FIP, 1.075 WHIP, 1,409 strikeouts, 219 complete games and 50.8 fWAR
"Old Pete" spent the first seven seasons of his major league career with the Phillies, putting together one of the most dominant stretches in MLB history. Between 1911 and 1917, Alexander finished second among all starting pitchers with 50.9 fWAR, trailing only Walter Johnson, who is arguably the greatest pitcher ever. Among all starting pitchers in Phillies history, Alexander is No. 1 in terms of complete-game shutouts (61) and FIP (2.38). Alexander was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1938, having spent the largest chunk of his career with the Phillies.
5. Chase Utley (2003-2015)
Best Season as a Phillie: 2008 - .292/.380/.535 with 33 home runs, 104 RBIs, 64 walks, .915 OPS, 136 OPS+ and an 8.2 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: .282/.366/.481 with 233 home runs, 916 RBIs, 625 walks, 1,623 hits, .847 OPS, 122 OPS+ and 59.4 fWAR
One of the greatest second basemen in MLB history, Utley spent parts of 13 seasons with the Phillies, making six All-Star teams. Between 2005 and 2014, Utley finished third in fWAR among all position players, trailing only future Hall of Famers Albert Pujols and Miguel Cabrera. And though he never won a Gold Glove Award, Utley posted 129 defensive runs saved over the same period, second only to Yadier Molina. While the Phillies lost the 2009 World Series in six games to the New York Yankees, Utley put together a tremendous individual performance, tying Reggie Jackson's record with five home runs in one series. "The Man" will become eligible for the Hall of Fame ballot in 2024.
4. Ed Delahanty (1888-1889; 1891-1901)
Best Season as a Phillie: 1899 - .410/.464/.582 with nine home runs, 137 RBIs, 55 walks, 1.046 OPS, 189 OPS+ and an 8.3 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: .344/.409/.501 with 90 home runs, 1,352 RBIs, 668 walks, 2,367 hits, .910 OPS, 150 OPS+ and 65.5 fWAR
Sandwiched around one year with the Cleveland Infants were two excellent stints with the Phillies for Delahanty. "Big Ed" won a batting title with the Phillies, and led baseball in doubles, home runs, RBIs, slugging percentage, OPS and OPS+ each on at least two occasions while with the team. Delahanty is the all-time leader among Phillies players with 158 triples and is in the top five in franchise history in fWAR (65.5), batting average (.348), on-base percentage (.415), hits (2,214), runs scored (1,368), doubles (442), total bases (3,233), stolen bases (412) and RBIs (1,288). Delahanty was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1945.
3. Robin Roberts (1948-1961)
Best Season as a Phillie: 1953 - 23-16 with a 2.75 ERA, 153 ERA+, 3.12 FIP, 1.111 WHIP, 198 strikeouts, 33 complete games and an 8.4 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: 234-199 with a 3.46 ERA, 114 ERA+, 3.49 FIP, 1.171 WHIP, 1,871 strikeouts, 272 complete games and 62.6 fWAR
The greatest right-handed pitcher in Phillies history, Roberts spent the first 14 seasons of his Hall of Fame career in Philadelphia. The Cy Young Award didn't exist until 1955, but Roberts likely would have captured the honor multiple times considering he led the National League in wins, complete games and innings pitched four times before the introduction of it. Among all pitchers in Phillies history, Roberts is the leader in complete games (272) and innings pitched (3,739 1/3). Roberts -- who made seven consecutive All-Star teams between 1950 and 1956 -- had his No. 36 retired by the Phillies in 1962.
2. Steve Carlton (1972-1986)
Best Season as a Phillie: 1972 - 27-10 with a 1.97 ERA, 182 ERA+, 2.01 FIP, 0.993 WHIP, 310 strikeouts, 30 complete games and an 11.1 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: 241-161 with a 3.09 ERA, 120 ERA+, 3.05 FIP, 1.211 WHIP, 3,031 strikeouts, 185 complete games and 75.5 fWAR
Carlton was already a two-time All-Star when the Phillies acquired him from the St. Louis Cardinals ahead of the 1972 season. He would spend parts of the next 15 seasons with the Phillies, winning four National League Cy Young Awards, making eight All-Star teams and helping the franchise to win their first World Series title in 1980. Carlton is the franchise leader in wins (241), strikeouts (3,031), games started (499) and fWAR (75.5). Carlton was inducted into the Hall of Fame wearing a Phillies cap in 1994. His No. 32 is retired by the Phillies, which forced another future Hall of Famer -- Roy Halladay -- to change his number to 34 when he was acquired by the Phillies in advance of the 2010 season.
1. Mike Schmidt (1972-1989)
Best Season as a Phillie: 1980 - .286/.380/.624 with 48 home runs, 121 RBIs, 89 walks, 1.004 OPS, 171 OPS+ and a 9.0 fWAR
Career Stats as a Phillie: .268/.380/.527 with 548 home runs, 1,595 RBIs, 1,507 walks, 2,234 hits, .908 OPS, 148 OPS+ and 106.5 fWAR
Schmidt is the greatest third baseman in MLB history, and the best player to ever suit up for the Phillies. A second-round pick in the 1972 MLB Draft, Schmidt spent his entire 18-year career with the Phillies, helping the organization to win their first World Series eight years after he was drafted. Schmidt is one of 11 players in MLB history to win the league MVP Award on three different occasions, and he also added 10 Gold Glove Awards and 12 All-Star Game appearances. His 548 career home runs are 16th in MLB history, and by far the most ever hit by a Phillie. In addition to being the franchise's Home Run King, Schmidt is also the all-time Phillies leader in fWAR (106.5), defensive WAR (18.4), runs scored (1,506), total bases (4,404), RBIs (1,595) and walks (1,507). Schmidt was a first-ballot Hall of Famer in 1995, and has his No. 20 retired by the Phillies.