Who Are Players In History Who Deserved to Be Phillies For Their Whole Career?

MLB: JUN 21 Marlins at Phillies
PHILADELPHIA, PA – JUNE 21: Chase Utley waves to the crowd before the game between the Miami Marlins and Philadelphia Phillies on June 21, 2019 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire)

Since the first trade in 1886, and the beginning of Free Agency in 1976, many players have switched teams for bigger paydays or a better chance to win. It is rather rare that you hear of a player that stayed with one franchise for the duration of their career.

Before I go into this list, there is one requirement that needs to be met to be a part of this:

  • The Player must be a homegrown player, meaning he came up to the Big Leagues through the Phillies Farm System.

With that being said, Free Agent signings such as Pete Rose or Bryce Harper will not be on this list, nor will trade acquisitions such as Steve Carlton or Roy Halladay be listed here either because they came over from other organizations.

Ryan Howard will also not be here because he spent his entire career with the Phillies.

Who Should Have Stayed Forever

Chase Utley (2003-2015)

Chase Utley wasn’t nicknamed The Man by the late great Harry Kalas just because. Chase was and will always be the ideal image of a Philadelphia Phillie.

Utley played the game the way fans expect all players who wear red pinstripes to play.

In 12 years with the Phillies chase was a six-time All-Star, four-time Silver Slugger winner- which he won consecutively, and he was a beloved member of the 2008 World Champions of Baseball.

In over 1500 games played for the Phillies, Utley slashed .282/.366/.481 with 233 Home Runs and 916 RBIs in a time where second basemen didn’t hit for power as Utley did. He wasn’t a guy who was hitting 40+ Home Runs a year, but the four Silver Sluggers speak for themselves.

Utley was a machine in the Postseason. He had 11 hits, three Home Runs, nine RBIs, and 10 runs scored in 14 games played during the 2008 World Series. In 2009 Utley hit .296 with 16 hits, six Home Runs, 10 RBIs, and 15 runs scored in 15 games played during the Postseason. Had the Phillies defeated The Yankees that year, Utley was well on his way to a World Series MVP.

Utley Was traded to the Dodgers along with cash in August 2015 for Darnell Sweeny and John Richy.

Jimmy Rollins (2000-2014)

Jimmy Rollins was a pivotal part of the Phillies’ memorable run from 2007-2011. It was he who dubbed the Phillies “the team to beat” before the 2007 season. After that comment, Rollins and the Phillies went on to win five consecutive division titles, two pennants, and a World Series title in 2008.

Rollins added some hardware to his collection also. Along with the ring, he won the MVP in 2007, four Gold Gloves, a Silver Slugger, and three All-Star appearances. He is also the Phillies All-Time leader in hits with 2306.

Rollins wasn’t only the leadoff hitter, but he was also the leader of those historic Phillies teams.

Rollins Played 2090 games for the Phillies in which he slashed .267/.327/.424 with 216 Home Runs, 887 RBIs, 111 triples, and 453 stolen bases. He is without a doubt the greatest shortstop in Phillies history.

Rollins was traded to the Dodgers in December 2014 along with cash for Tom Windle and current Phillies starting pitcher Zach Eflin.

Cole Hamels (2006-2015)

Cole Hamels was a young, left-handed ace for the Phillies before the acquisitions of Cliff Lee, Roy Halladay, and then reacquiring Cliff Lee.

Hamels started 294 games for the Phillies with a record of 114-90. Hamels had a Phillies career ERA of 3.30 in 1930.0 innings pitched, 1844 strikeouts, and 14 complete games- seven of which were shutouts.

Hamels was the World Series MVP in 2008, which capped off a near-historic Postseason for him. He was 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA in five Postseason starts in 35 innings pitched and 30 strikeouts. Hamels was virtually unhittable during the Postseason in 2008. The rain in game five of the World Series caused him to allow the tying run to score before the suspension of game 5, handing him a no-decision instead of being 5-0 that Postseason.

Hamels was traded to the Rangers with Jake Diekman for Jorge Alfaro, Alec Asher, Jerad Eickhoff, Matt Harrison, Jake Thompson, and Nick Williams.

Just a note before we continue: Utley, Rollins, and Hamels all had great trade value and the Phillies traded them to jumpstart their rebuild.

Carlos Ruiz (2006-2016)

Carlos Ruiz was a reliable backstop for the Phillies for 11 years. He never set the league on fire with his bat, but he was always good for a clutch hit, whether one that barely roles past the mound, or he puts a game-winner in the seats.

Chooch was a wall behind the plate and was one of the best game callers to play the catching position for the Phillies.

In 1069 games for the Phillies, Ruiz slashed .266/.352/.393 with 68 career Home Runs, 401 RBIs, and 898 hits.

During his time with the Phillies, Ruiz caught a perfect game, two no-hitters, and Roy Halladay’s playoff no-hitter against the Reds.  

Ruiz was the guy behind the plate after Mike Lieberthal departed for Los Angeles after the 2006 season and provided stability back there for over a decade.

Ruiz was traded to the Dodgers with cash in exchange for a player to be named later, who eventually became Joey Curletta,  Tommy Bergjans, and A.J. Ellis.

Current Phillies Who Could Possibly Stay Forever

Aaron Nola (2015-Present)

Aaron Nola was the Heir-apparent to the Four Aces the Phillies had on their staff before he was called up in July 2015, a mere 10 days before the Phillies traded Cole Hamels to the Texas Rangers.

Nola started 13 games his rookie season, going 6-2 with a 3.59 ERA in 77 2/3 innings pitched.

He was the club’s lone All-Star representative in 2018 and has started the last four Opening Days for the Phillies.

Nola has strung a few seasons that were out of character for him and has come up short the last three Septembers. He is signed through 2024 and still a big part of the Phillies rotation. If he can return to his 2018 self, The Phillies can have a dominant one-two punch at the top of their rotation alongside Zack Wheeler.

Rhys Hoskins (2017-Present)

While Bryce Harper may be The Guy for the Phillies, Rhys Hoskins is a very big part of the Phillies’ future- especially with the National League adopting the Designated Hitter at some point in the near future.

The Phillies brought Hoskins up late in the 2017 season where in 50 games he had 18 Home Runs and 48 RBIs while slashing .259/.396/.618. Hoskins was on quite a streak and was awarded the Rookie of the Month in the National League for the month of August.

Hoskins played every day for the Phillies since 2018, and if healthy, can become one of the best power-hitting first basemen since Ryan Howard.

Hoskins has had issues staying healthy the past few seasons, suffering season-ending injuries in both 2020 and 2021.

When he was in the Phillies lineup, he was major protection for Bryce Harper, and will assume that role once more in 2022.

Many believe that if the Phillies have a healthy Hoskins down the stretch, 2021 ends much differently.

Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire