Phillies: Best individual pitching seasons by age
Age 32: Cliff Lee (2011)
Lee spent his first seven-plus seasons in the Major Leagues with the Indians, winning 18 in 2005 and claiming the Cy Young Award in 2008 after a 22-3 season with a 2.54 ERA. The Phillies first acquired Lee in a trade with the Indians on July 29. Over 12 starts the rest of the way, Lee posted a 7-4 record with an ERA of 3.39.
After being traded to Seattle in December of 2009, Lee was again traded midseason to the Rangers, winning a combined 12 games with an ERA of 3.18. Lee was back in Philadelphia for the second time, signing as a free agent on December 15, 2010.
Lee made the most of his return in 2011 at the age of 32. He won 17 of 23 decisions over 32 starts with an ERA of 2.40. Lee recorded a league-high six shutouts and struck out 238 in 232 2/3 innings. His efforts earned his third of four career All-Star appearances.
Lee had two more 200-plus innings, 200-plus strikeout seasons for the Phillies before an elbow injury limited him to 13 starts in 2014 and ultimately ended his career. Lee retired with 143 wins and a 3.52 ERA.
Age 33: Billy Wagner (2005)
Over Wagner’s first nine seasons in the Major Leagues with the Astros, Wagner was arguably the hardest throwing and most dominant closer in the National League. He averaged nearly 15 strikeouts per nine innings from 1997 through 1999. In 2003, Wagner posted an ERA of 1.78, saving 44 games.
The Phillies acquired the flamethrowing lefty via trade that sent Brandon Duckworth, Taylor Buchholz, and Ezequiel Astacio to the Astros. In Wagner’s first season with the Phillies, he went 4-0 with 21 saves and an ERA of 2.42 in 45 appearances.
At age 33, Wagner proved he had plenty left in the tank. In 75 games, Wagner saved 38, finished a league-high 70, struck out 87 in 77 2/3 innings, and posted a 1.51 ERA. Despite the great season, Wagner was granted free agency and signed with the Mets.
Wagner made two more All-Star appearances for the Mets before injuries limited him to only 17 games combined with the Mets and Red Sox in 2009. He signed with the Braves and had an All-Star season, saving 37 with a 1.43 ERA in 2010 before an oblique injury in the playoffs ended his career.