Philadelphia Phillies: MLB's Best Pitching Staff

Ryan SmithCorrespondent IMarch 20, 2009

PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 27:  Starting pitcher Cole Hamels #35 of the Philadelphia Phillies throws a pitch against the Tampa Bay Rays during game five of the 2008 MLB World Series on October 27, 2008 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

The Philadelphia Phillies are currently the World Series champions and deserve the title. But in only a short time, the Phillies will have to defend their title against 29 other teams. It seems like it was only yesterday that they won the World Series, but sadly, it wasn't.

Last year, the Phillies had the best bullpen in the majors and this year they probably will again. The only thing that could possibly keep them from being tops in relief is J.C. Romero's 50-game suspension. But they still have many other great relievers.

The Phillies rotation will also do well this year. Right now, Chan Ho Park and J.A. Happ are battling it out for the fifth spot in the rotation. Either one would do a great job for the Phillies. 

Cole Hamels, Brett Myers, Joe Blanton, and Jamie Moyer are all capable of pitching 200 innings or close to it. If Happ makes the rotation, look out! He could be in the running for Rookie of the Year, which we all saw last year. He's capable of doing so, trust me.

Now let's break the Phillies pitching staff down:

Hamels should have another stellar year and will probably get at least a few votes in Cy Young voting. He could even win it all.

Projected stats: 17-5, 205 IP, 2.78 ERA, 203 K

Myers has finally adjusted to being a starter again, which is a great thing for the Phillies. He should have a great year as well and will definitely be an important aspect in the Phillies' quest for a repeat.

Projected stats: 13-6, 195.3 IP, 3.46 ERA, 189 K

Moyer is ageless as we all know. He won't have as great a year as last year, but he will be fun to watch.

Projected stats: 13-7, 193.7 IP, 3.85 ERA, 120 K

Blanton will definitely be an inning-eater for the Phillies next year. He claimed that he had a rough year last year because spring training was different last year. (The Athletics had to prepare differently to be ready for their game in Tokyo against Japan on March 25). If that's the case, he'll also be one to watch.

Projected stats: 12-8, 197.3 IP, 3.98 ERA, 130 K

Brad Lidge was perfect last year and his current saves steak will definitely be something to watch. I won't project his stats because I don't want to jinx him.