Phillies All-Decade Team 1970s: Homegrown Talent at the Forefront
Kaat was a three-time All-Star and 17-year Major League veteran when Phillies acquired him in a trade with Mike Buskey for Dick Ruthven, Alan Bannister, and Roy Thomas in December of 1975.
A solid back end of the rotation starter for the NL East champions in 1976, Kaat went 12-14 with an ERA of 3.48. In 38 games (35 as a starter), Kaat completed seven with one shutout in 227 2/3 innings.
Kaat struggled in 1977 as his record dropped to 6-11 with a 5.39 ERA in 35 games and 160 1/3 innings. As a 39-year old, he had a rebound season of sorts in 1978, winning eight and dropping only five with an ERA just over four.
After a 1-0 start in four games for the Phillies in 1979, Kaat was sold to the New York Yankees on May 11. Kaat ended up pitching for the Yankees and Cardinals for a few more years before retiring in 1983 at the age of 44.
Kaat had a relatively mediocre 27-30 record with an ERA of 4.23 in 102 games with the Phillies. However, he provided stability to the staff during three consecutive NL East title teams.