The 2008-2012 Phillies were basically built on a few HRs and a lot of marginal free agents:
Utley (#15), Rollins (2nd), Burrell (#1), Hamels (#17), Myers (#12), Happ (3rd), Madson (9th), Victorino (Rule 5), Werth (SFA) - that was most of the WAR on that team. 33.7 of 41.6.
Ruiz was the only LA player, Bastardo in 2009
They used a lot of their picks for trades:
Garcia for Floyd (#4),
Lidge for Bourn (4th), Costanzo (2nd), Geary (15th)
Blanton for Spencer (3rd), Cardenas (#37), Outman (10th)
Lee for Knapp (2nd), Carrasco (LA), Donald (3rd), Marson (4th)
Halladay for D'Arnaud (#37), Drabek (#18), Taylor (5th)
Pence for Cosart (38th), Singleton (8th), Zeid (10th), Santana (LA)
Mayberry for Golson (#21)
Oswalt for Happ, Gose (2nd), Villar (LA)
The last five years they've worked to turn it around, but the big push came from good trades (RA did something right on his way out the door) and those players are now mostly in the majors.
The Braves "cheated" in LA, and eventually got slapped for it, but not until they got a good haul, we should have been doing so but until Middleton took over, the powers that be were too cheap. While Middleton can't spend crazy money, the fact that we've kept the Venezuelan Academy open (which is risky financially) and Klentak seems to have carte blanche to spend on scouts and coaches bodes well for the future. In the future, it is this kind of spending that will provide a competitive advantage on the margin, since the salary cap limits the "Harper" strategy and spending caps limit going crazy in the international market.