Phillies all-time best starting rotation based on WAR

Who are the Phillies best starting five in franchise history?
Philadelphia Phillies all-time best starting rotation based on WAR
Philadelphia Phillies all-time best starting rotation based on WAR / Hunter Martin/GettyImages
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No. 3: Grover (Cleveland) Alexander (50.8 fWAR)

For someone nicknamed Old Pete or Alexander the Great, Phillies legend Grover Alexander has the distinguished honor of holding the franchise record for the best winning percentage as a starter at .676. Despite only pitching with the organization for eight seasons from 1911 to 1917 and back again with the club in 1930, he accumulated an astonishing 190-91 record over 2,513 2/3 innings with a 2.18 ERA and 1.08 WHIP.

At the time, he was purely dominant, leading the NL on multiple occasions in wins, ERA, complete games, shutouts, innings pitched, and strikeouts. Had the Cy Young Award existed in his era, Alexander would likely have a hefty collection.

Overall, Alexander’s ERA, WHIP, innings pitched and wins total all rank him third on the Phillies all-time, while his 1,409 strikeouts put him seventh, sandwiched between Schilling and Bunning. He helped lead the Phillies to the World Series in 1915, but they fell at the hands of the Boston Red Sox. Nevertheless, it certainly doesn’t take away the greatness he surely put on full display with the organization at the time.

Despite his excellence, Alexander was unexpectedly traded away from the club following the 1917 season to the Cubs, as Phillies owner William Baker claimed he needed the money. Alexander went on to play nine more seasons with the Cubs before he was traded once again, this time to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1926.

After another four solid seasons with the Cardinals, Alexander had his one last hurrah in a Phillies uniform in 1930 before officially leaving MLB for good. However, his legacy in the baseball world will never be forgotten as he was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1938, and deservedly so.