No. 3: Cliff Lee
Lee was easily a fan favorite during his two separate tenures with the team, and with the way he performed, he would be No. 1 on this list for just about any other team.
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He was originally acquired at the deadline in 2009 after a failed attempt by the Phillies to acquire Roy Halladay. Nonetheless, Lee was outstanding during the 2009 season. In 12 regular season starts, Lee was 7-4 with an ERA of 3.39, but he made a name for himself with his performance in the playoffs that year.
In a crucial Game 3 of the NLCS, Lee pitched eight scoreless innings, striking out 10 on the way to the Phils’ 11-0 victory that gave them a 2-1 advantage in the series. Lee, however, is better known for his performances in the team’s only two victories during the ’09 World Series against the Yankees.
On the road in Game 1, Lee tossed a complete game allowing one earned run and striking out 10. He did not have nearly as good of a performance in Game 5, but he got the job done and extended the series for another day.
After he was traded to Seattle in the three-team deal that netted the Phillies Roy Halladay in the ensuing offseason, Lee spent the 2010 season with Seattle and then Texas where he helped them to a victory in the ALCS.
Lee wound up re-signing with the Phillies prior to the 2011 season, and went on to pitch four more seasons with the team and was consistently the best starter on the team. Two of those four seasons Lee was an All-Star and he finished third in the Cy Young voting in 2011.
Next up we’ll take a look at one of the heroes of the unforgettable 2008 season.