Philadelphia Phillies: 50 greatest players of all-time
Another player who snuck onto the list by playing in both the Live and Deadball Era is outfielder Cy Williams, who played his first major league game for the Chicago Cubs in 1912. Williams led the league with 12 home runs and an .831 OPS in 1916 for Chicago and joined the Phillies in 1918.
In a trade that was completely lopsided, the Phillies sent 35-year-old outfielder Dode Paskert to Chicago in exchange for the 30-year-old Williams, who would go to lead the league in home runs three times after the trade.
Williams played 13 seasons in Philadelphia, which carried him into his age-42 season. In 1920, 1923 and 1927, he led the league in home runs, including 41 in 1923 when he tied Babe Ruth for the most in baseball. Those 41 home runs were more than the Boston Red Sox, the Washington Senators, and the Boston Braves clubs had all year.
Williams was one of the catalysts who pulled baseball from the Deadball Era and battled with Ruth in the home run race.
The National League didn’t begin awarding an MVP award until 1924, and Williams received just one vote.
Williams finished his Phillies career in 1930 with 217 home runs, 795 RBI, 1,553 hits and a .306 batting average. He sits among the Phillies’ all-time top-10 for hits, home runs, total bases and runs created.
Philadelphia inducted Williams onto the Wall of Fame in 1986 as their eighth inductee, though it sadly came 12 years after his death.