March 28, 2017

Taking the Extra Base:  The Players

March 16, 2016 by · 3 Comments 

Stimulated by the Texas Rangers chapter in the “Bill James Baseball Abstract 1984” entitled “Running The Bases” (pages 156-159), the following study reveals the top base runners in the past 85 seasons (1930-2015) with respect to taking the extra base on a clean single.* I will post a companion article in the near future to review my findings with respect to team baserunning outcomes. Here are links to the data in OpenDocument Spreadsheet format:

Baserunning Single-Season Totals, Sorted by Year, Team and Pct1st3rd

Baserunning Career Totals Sorted by Pct1st3rd

Advancing from First to Third Base on a Single

I downloaded the 1930 through 2015 season-by-season event databases from Retrosheet.  I utilized the following criteria to sort and filter the data:

All events coded as singles with a runner on first base at the start of the play denoted as Single_Baserunner_Opportunities, abbreviated as “Opps” –

  • where the runner on first base advanced to second base and no errors occurred on the play (denoted as “Single_1stTo2nd”)
  • where the runner on first base advanced to third base and no errors occurred on the play (denoted as “Single_1stTo3rd”)
  • where the runner on first scored on the play and no errors occurred (denoted as “Single_Scored_From_1st”)
  • where the runner on first was put out on the play and no errors occurred (denoted as “BaserunningOuts”)

This yielded the following results:

572,679 Single_Baserunner_Opps

170,123 Single_1stTo3rd

389,902 Single_1stTo2nd

1,678 Single_Scored_From_1st

10,976 BaserunningOuts

I focused on the “Single_1stTo3rd” plays, since any ballplayer can advance from first to second base on a clean single. Conversely, scoring a runner from first base on a single is such an exciting yet rare event that it only occurs roughly 20 times per season. A baserunner’s dash from first to third base requires speed, skill, agility, daring and intellect. In a few brief moments the runner decides whether to fully commit to taking the extra base, while processing the distance of the hit, how far the outfielder must travel to retrieve the ball, the strength and accuracy of the outfielder’s throwing arm. The baserunner also needs to make an honest assessment of their skills and determine if the gamble is likely to pay off.

The “First-to-Third Percentage” is calculated by taking the number of successful events where the baserunner advanced from first base to third base on a clean single with no errors on a play divided by the number of opportunities. Therefore any “failed” events are essentially noting when the runner exercised caution and remained at second base, with a handful of “put out attempting to advance” events to round out the totals.

Terminology

1B_BR_Opps – # occurrences when the runner on first base attempted to advance on a clean single (no errors on the play) 

1st-Home – runner on first base scored on a clean single 

1st-3rdrunner on first base advanced safely to third base on a clean single 

1st-2nd – runner on first base advanced safely to second base on a clean single 

BR_Outs – runner on first base is put out attempting to advance on a clean single 

Pct1st3rd – # of successful advances from first to third base (1st-3rd) divided by the # of opportunities (1B_BR_Opps)

First-to-Third Percentage (minimum 150 opportunities)

  • Dexter Fowler             58.0% (112 successful first-to-third advances in 193 opps)

 

Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
COL_2008 2 0 2 0 0 1.000
COL_2009 21 0 13 8 0 0.619
COL_2010 26 0 11 14 1 0.423
COL_2011 33 0 20 13 0 0.606
COL_2012 28 0 18 10 0 0.643
COL_2013 29 0 19 10 0 0.655
HOU_2014 23 0 15 8 0 0.652
CHN_2015 31 0 14 15 2 0.452
Totals 193 0 112 78 3 0.580

The Chicago Cubs’ center fielder tops the All-Time list* (minimum 150 opps), taking the extra base on 58% of all singles when he is the runner on first base. “Daddy Long Legs” led the National League with 14 triples in 2010 and topped the 100-run mark in 2015 while notching a career-high 26 Win Shares.

  • Glenn Beckert             57.0% (213 successful first-to-third advances in 374 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
CHN_1965 33 0 18 14 1 0.545
CHN_1966 39 0 25 14 0 0.641
CHN_1967 53 0 39 14 0 0.736
CHN_1968 44 0 28 16 0 0.636
CHN_1969 43 1 27 14 1 0.628
CHN_1970 40 0 19 21 0 0.475
CHN_1971 44 0 26 18 0 0.591
CHN_1972 33 0 15 18 0 0.455
CHN_1973 33 0 13 20 0 0.394
SDN_1974 11 0 2 9 0 0.182
SDN_1975 1 0 1 0 0 1.000
Totals 374 1 213 158 2 0.570

Four-time All-Star and former Cubs second baseman Glenn Beckert places runner-up on our roster of calculated risk-takers. Beckert recorded at least 90 runs scored in three seasons and topped the Senior Circuit with 98 aces in 1968. His aggressive base running tactics did not include the stolen base, as he converted only 49 of 74 stolen base attempts in his big-league career.

  • Dave Hollins                 55.7% (123 successful first-to-third advances in 221 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
PHI_1990 6 1 2 3 0 0.333
PHI_1991 7 0 4 3 0 0.571
PHI_1992 34 0 17 16 1 0.500
PHI_1993 32 0 22 10 0 0.688
PHI_1994 11 0 4 7 0 0.364
PHI_1995 14 0 10 4 0 0.714
MIN_1996 45 0 25 20 0 0.556
SEA_1996 10 0 3 6 1 0.300
ANA_1997 32 1 17 14 0 0.531
ANA_1998 24 0 16 8 0 0.667
TOR_1999 3 0 2 1 0 0.667
PHI_2002 3 0 1 2 0 0.333
Totals 221 2 123 94 2 0.557

Dave “Head” Hollins garnered his lone All-Star invitation in 1993, one year after he rewarded the Phillies with 27 blasts and 93 ribbies at the hot corner. He surpassed the century mark in runs scored on three occasions. Hollins registered 25 Win Shares and led the League with 19 HBP’s in ‘92.

  • Willie Mays                   54.2 % (332 successful first-to-third advances in 612 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
NY1_1951 32 0 16 14 2 0.500
NY1_1952 7 1 4 2 0 0.571
NY1_1954 29 0 20 8 1 0.690
NY1_1955 25 0 14 11 0 0.560
NY1_1956 16 1 6 9 0 0.375
NY1_1957 33 1 19 13 0 0.576
SFN_1958 38 0 24 14 0 0.632
SFN_1959 40 0 22 17 1 0.550
SFN_1960 34 1 19 13 1 0.559
SFN_1961 38 1 21 14 2 0.553
SFN_1962 38 0 20 14 4 0.526
SFN_1963 30 0 24 4 2 0.800
SFN_1964 28 0 12 16 0 0.429
SFN_1965 29 0 15 14 0 0.517
SFN_1966 22 0 13 8 1 0.591
SFN_1967 32 2 21 9 0 0.656
SFN_1968 40 1 18 20 1 0.450
SFN_1969 25 0 10 14 1 0.400
SFN_1970 25 0 18 6 1 0.720
SFN_1971 23 0 7 16 0 0.304
SFN_1972 7 0 1 6 0 0.143
NYN_1972 9 0 3 6 0 0.333
NYN_1973 12 0 5 6 1 0.417
Totals 612 8 332 254 18 0.542

The “Say Hey Kid” merited 12 consecutive Gold Glove Awards from 1957 to 1968, topped the National League in home runs 4 times and surpassed the 100-run plateau in twelve successive campaigns (1954-1965). The two-time MVP winner placed sixth or better in the balloting for ten straight seasons. Mays swiped a League-high 40 bases in ’56 and pilfered 336 bags in his career to complement his 660 circuit clouts.

  • Mike Trout                    53.9% (82 successful first-to-third advances in 152 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
ANA_2011 6 0 2 4 0 0.333
ANA_2012 43 1 25 17 0 0.581
ANA_2013 44 0 27 17 0 0.614
ANA_2014 39 2 19 17 1 0.487
ANA_2015 20 0 9 11 0 0.450
Totals 152 3 82 66 1 0.539

The 2012 American League Rookie of the Year and 2014 A.L. MVP produced a .308 BA with 34 home runs, 95 RBI and 114 runs scored per season from 2012-15. The “Millville Meteor” has curtailed his base-stealing exploits since he nabbed 49 bags in 54 attempts during his inaugural campaign. Through the 2015 season, Trout accrued 163 Win Shares and 33 WAR.

  • Chick Hafey                 53.5% (91 successful first-to-third advances in 170 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
SLN_1930 25 0 15 10 0 0.600
SLN_1931 19 0 8 11 0 0.421
CIN_1932 18 0 9 9 0 0.500
CIN_1933 34 0 15 18 1 0.441
CIN_1934 50 0 31 19 0 0.620
CIN_1935 6 0 4 2 0 0.667
CIN_1937 18 0 9 9 0 0.500
Totals 170 0 91 78 1 0.535

A lifetime .317 hitter, Chick Hafey claimed the 1931 NL batting crown, supplying a .349 BA for the Redbirds. Hafey posted a .339 BA over six seasons (1927-1932) and tallied at least 100 runs and RBI in three consecutive campaigns (1928-1930). The 53.5% first-to-third percentage represents the latter-half of his career.

  • Red Kress                      53.2% (84 successful first-to-third advances in 158 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
SLA_1930 23 0 11 11 1 0.478
SLA_1931 26 0 12 12 2 0.462
SLA_1932 1 0 0 0 1 0
CHA_1932 23 0 14 7 2 0.609
CHA_1933 23 0 14 8 1 0.609
CHA_1934 1 0 0 1 0 0
WS1_1934 2 0 2 0 0 1.000
WS1_1935 12 0 5 6 1 0.417
WS1_1936 18 0 7 10 1 0.389
SLA_1938 21 0 14 6 1 0.667
SLA_1939 1 0 1 0 0 1.000
DET_1939 3 0 2 1 0 0.667
DET_1940 4 0 2 2 0 0.500
Totals 158 0 84 64 10 0.532

In his rookie campaign, Browns’ shortstop Red Kress legged out 10 triples and delivered a .273 BA. Over the next three years, Kress averaged .310 with 42 doubles, 14 dingers, 111 ribbies and 88 runs scored. Settling into a super-utility role, Kress was traded several times including a deal in January, 1937 which shipped him to the minors with the Minneapolis Millers. He returned the majors with the Browns in the subsequent season and notched a .302 BA with 33 two-base knocks.

  • Pepper Martin              53.0% (80 successful first-to-third advances in 151 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
SLN_1931 25 0 18 3 4 0.720
SLN_1932 17 0 11 6 0 0.647
SLN_1933 31 1 14 14 2 0.452
SLN_1934 7 0 6 1 0 0.857
SLN_1935 19 0 12 6 1 0.632
SLN_1936 14 0 9 5 0 0.643
SLN_1937 8 0 3 4 1 0.375
SLN_1938 6 0 4 2 0 0.667
SLN_1939 15 0 1 13 1 0.067
SLN_1940 4 0 2 2 0 0.500
SLN_1944 5 0 0 5 0 0.000
Totals 151 1 80 61 9 0.530

Pepper Martin earned cups of coffee in 1928 and 1930 before breaking into the Redbirds lineup in ’31. One of the members of the “Gas House Gang”, Martin led the National League with 122 runs scored in 1933 and registered 121 tallies in back-to-back seasons (1935-36). “The Wild Horse of the Osage” paced the circuit in stolen bases three times.

  • Ron LeFlore                52.7% (109 successful first-to-third advances in 207 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
DET_1974 11 0 6 5 0 0.545
DET_1975 32 1 21 10 0 0.656
DET_1976 19 1 8 10 0 0.421
DET_1977 33 0 12 20 1 0.364
DET_1978 38 0 22 14 2 0.579
DET_1979 34 0 21 13 0 0.618
MON_1980 15 0 4 11 0 0.267
CHA_1981 16 0 9 7 0 0.563
CHA_1982 9 0 6 3 0 0.667
Totals 207 2 109 93 3 0.527

Two-time stolen base champion Ron LeFlore pilfered 455 bases in his career, averaging 51 swipes per season. He scored a League-leading 126 runs for Detroit in 1978 and racked up 97 successful steals for the Expos in 1980. In a five-year stretch covering 1976-1980, LeFlore registered 105 runs scored per year.

  • Shawon Dunston         51.3% (119 successful first-to-third advances in 232 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
CHN_1985 10 0 5 4 1 0.500
CHN_1986 17 0 4 13 0 0.235
CHN_1987 21 0 12 7 2 0.571
CHN_1988 15 0 10 5 0 0.667
CHN_1989 15 0 11 4 0 0.733
CHN_1990 28 0 15 13 0 0.536
CHN_1991 15 0 10 5 0 0.667
CHN_1992 1 0 0 1 0 0.000
CHN_1993 1 0 0 1 0 0.000
CHN_1994 12 0 6 6 0 0.500
CHN_1995 23 0 11 10 2 0.478
SFN_1996 17 0 7 10 0 0.412
CHN_1997 13 0 10 2 1 0.769
PIT_1997 2 0 1 1 0 0.500
CLE_1998 9 0 3 6 0 0.333
SFN_1998 2 0 0 2 0 0
SLN_1999 11 0 4 7 0 0.364
NYN_1999 7 0 2 5 0 0.286
SLN_2000 4 0 2 2 0 0.500
SFN_2001 4 0 3 0 1 0.750
SFN_2002 5 0 3 2 0 0.600
Totals 232 0 119 106 7 0.513

A veteran of 18 Major League campaigns and the Cubs #1 draft pick in 1982, Shawon Dunston nabbed 30+ bases in 1988 and 1997. He garnered two All-Star invitations and recorded 212 career stolen bases.

  • Kiki Cuyler                    51.0% (102 successful first-to-third advances in 200 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
CHN_1930 28 1 17 9 1 0.607
CHN_1931 26 0 13 13 0 0.500
CHN_1932 17 0 8 8 1 0.471
CHN_1933 10 0 5 5 0 0.500
CHN_1934 26 0 13 13 0 0.500
CHN_1935 5 0 4 1 0 0.800
CIN_1935 13 0 7 5 1 0.538
CIN_1936 38 0 18 20 0 0.474
CIN_1937 24 0 15 8 1 0.625
BRO_1938 13 0 2 11 0 0.154
Totals 200 1 102 93 4 0.510

Inducted in the Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee in 1968, outfielder Kiki Cuyler produced a career batting average of .321 and topped the National League in stolen bases four times. Cuyler eclipsed the 100-run mark five times including 155 runs scored in 1930.

  • Chone Figgins              50.4% (142 successful first-to-third advances in 282 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
ANA_2002 2 0 1 1 0 0.500
ANA_2003 19 0 11 8 0 0.579
ANA_2004 29 0 16 10 3 0.552
ANA_2005 34 0 19 14 1 0.559
ANA_2006 37 1 16 20 0 0.432
ANA_2007 33 0 19 14 0 0.576
ANA_2008 27 0 10 17 0 0.370
ANA_2009 42 0 22 19 1 0.524
SEA_2010 32 0 14 17 1 0.438
SEA_2011 10 0 6 3 1 0.600
SEA_2012 12 0 6 6 0 0.500
LAN_2014 5 0 2 3 0 0.400
Totals 282 1 142 132 7 0.504

A swift utilityman with 341 career stolen bases to his credit, Chone Figgins debuted as a pinch-runner for the eventual 2002 World Series Champions. Following several seasons as a jack-of-all-trades, Figgins settled in at the hot corner for the Halos. He averaged 44 steals over seven campaigns (2004-2010) including a League-best 62 swipes in 2005. Figgins posted a .330 BA in ’07 and topped the Junior Circuit with 101 bases on balls while meriting an invitation to the All-Star contest in ’09.

  • Carl Reynolds                50.0% (81 successful first-to-third advances in 162 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
CHA_1930 31 0 18 12 1 0.581
CHA_1931 27 0 12 15 0 0.444
WS1_1932 14 0 7 7 0 0.500
SLA_1933 23 0 14 9 0 0.609
BOS_1934 13 0 5 8 0 0.385
BOS_1935 7 0 5 2 0 0.714
WS1_1936 13 0 5 7 1 0.385
CHN_1938 21 0 11 10 0 0.524
CHN_1939 13 1 4 8 0 0.308
Totals 162 1 81 78 2 0.500

Carl Reynolds produced a .302 batting average in his 13-year Major League career as an outfielder with the White Sox, Senators, Browns, Red Sox and Cubs. He tallied 25 Win Shares in his finest campaign (1930) when he delivered a .359 BA with 22 jacks and 104 ribbies. Reynolds contributed personal-bests with 202 base knocks, 103 runs and 18 triples.

  • Bobby Richardson       50.0% (135 successful first-to-third advances in 270 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
NYA_1955 3 0 2 1 0 0.667
NYA_1956 1 0 1 0 0 1.000
NYA_1957 11 0 3 8 0 0.273
NYA_1958 13 0 8 5 0 0.615
NYA_1959 26 0 11 15 0 0.423
NYA_1960 16 0 5 11 0 0.313
NYA_1961 30 0 17 13 0 0.567
NYA_1962 32 0 19 13 0 0.594
NYA_1963 25 0 7 18 0 0.280
NYA_1964 43 2 25 14 2 0.581
NYA_1965 36 0 17 19 0 0.472
NYA_1966 34 0 20 14 0 0.588
Totals 270 2 135 131 2 0.500

Bobby Richardson appeared in seven All-Star contests and collected five Gold Glove Awards. The second baseman typically batted first or second for the Yankees during the latter half of his career, setting the table for Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle. He compiled a League-best 209 base hits and established career-highs in batting average (.302), runs (99), doubles (38), home runs and RBI in ‘62.

  • Thurman Munson       49.7% (184 successful first-to-third advances in 370 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
NYA_1969 6 0 2 4 0 0.333
NYA_1970 32 0 15 16 1 0.469
NYA_1971 36 0 19 17 0 0.528
NYA_1972 37 0 13 23 1 0.351
NYA_1973 32 0 15 17 0 0.469
NYA_1974 33 0 15 18 0 0.455
NYA_1975 46 0 27 19 0 0.587
NYA_1976 44 0 27 17 0 0.614
NYA_1977 31 0 16 14 1 0.516
NYA_1978 39 0 20 19 0 0.513
NYA_1979 34 0 15 18 1 0.441
Totals 370 0 184 182 4 0.497

“Tugboat” earned American League Rookie of the Year honors in 1970. The 3-time Gold Glove Award winner (1973-75) collected the 1976 A.L. MVP Award. He produced a .309 BA with 16 four-baggers and 102 ribbies per season over a three-year period (1975-77).

  • Babe Ruth                     49.7% (83 successful first-to-third advances in 167 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
NYA_1930 30 0 18 10 2 0.600
NYA_1931 42 0 16 25 1 0.381
NYA_1932 36 0 24 12 0 0.667
NYA_1933 29 0 12 17 0 0.414
NYA_1934 26 0 12 12 2 0.462
BSN_1935 4 0 1 3 0 0.250
Totals 167 0 83 79 5 0.497

While we are only examining the final 5+ seasons of Babe Ruth’s career, the event data indicates that the “Sultan of Swat” excelled on the base paths. If you eliminate 192 runs scored by Ruth on his own circuit clouts from 1930-34, he still registered 80 runs per year during his age 35-39 seasons.

  • Julian Javier                 49.3% (167 successful first-to-third advances in 339 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
SLN_1960 21 0 8 11 2 0.381
SLN_1961 24 0 12 11 1 0.500
SLN_1962 36 1 23 12 0 0.639
SLN_1963 31 0 20 11 0 0.645
SLN_1964 23 0 12 11 0 0.522
SLN_1965 10 0 4 6 0 0.400
SLN_1966 24 0 15 9 0 0.625
SLN_1967 51 1 27 21 2 0.529
SLN_1968 32 0 12 19 1 0.375
SLN_1969 32 1 11 19 1 0.344
SLN_1970 32 0 18 12 2 0.563
SLN_1971 19 0 5 14 0 0.263
CIN_1972 4 0 0 4 0 0
Totals 339 3 167 160 9 0.493

The Redbirds’ second-sacker throughout the Sixties scored a career-high 97 runs and nabbed 26 bags in his third campaign. The two-time All-Star rapped 28 doubles and tallied 17 Win Shares in 1969.

  • Ed Morgan                    48.7% (73 successful first-to-third advances in 150 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
CLE_1930 38 0 13 22 3 0.342
CLE_1931 42 0 20 21 1 0.476
CLE_1932 41 0 21 20 0 0.512
CLE_1933 4 0 3 1 0 0.750
BOS_1934 25 0 16 8 1 0.640
Totals 150 0 73 72 5 0.487

Indians’ 1B/OF Ed Morgan logged a .338 BA through his fourth season in the big leagues. He enjoyed a majestic campaign in 1930, batting .349 while establishing personal-bests with 204 base hits, 122 runs scored, 47 doubles, 11 triples, 26 round-trippers and 136 ribbies. His output plummeted in ‘32 and he was out of the Major Leagues within three years.

  • Tony Kubek                   48.6% (121 successful first-to-third advances in 249 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
NYA_1957 26 0 8 18 0 0.308
NYA_1958 30 0 16 13 1 0.533
NYA_1959 33 0 16 16 1 0.485
NYA_1960 29 0 13 16 0 0.448
NYA_1961 38 0 18 20 0 0.474
NYA_1962 12 0 4 7 1 0.333
NYA_1963 39 0 21 18 0 0.538
NYA_1964 26 0 15 11 0 0.577
NYA_1965 16 0 10 6 0 0.625
Totals 249 0 121 125 3 0.486

Tony Kubek paired with Bobby Richardson to solidify the Yankees’ infield from the late Fifties through the mid-Sixties. Kubek collected the Rookie of the Year hardware in 1957 when he boasted his highest single-season batting average (.297). The three-time All-Star registered 21 Win Shares and drilled 38 doubles for the Bronx Bombers in ’61.

  • Chuck Klein                 48.5% (144 successful first-to-third advances in 297 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
PHI_1930 40 0 18 22 0 0.450
PHI_1931 34 0 20 13 1 0.588
PHI_1932 33 0 24 9 0 0.727
PHI_1933 39 0 16 23 0 0.410
CHN_1934 28 0 12 16 0 0.429
CHN_1935 20 0 11 9 0 0.550
CHN_1936 8 0 4 4 0 0.500
PHI_1936 15 0 7 7 1 0.467
PHI_1937 30 0 16 13 1 0.533
PHI_1938 19 0 5 14 0 0.263
PIT_1939 10 0 5 5 0 0.500
PHI_1939 6 0 2 4 0 0.333
PHI_1940 13 0 4 9 0 0.308
PHI_1941 2 0 0 2 0 0.000
Totals 297 0 144 150 3 0.485

Chuck Klein swatted 300 big-flies in his career which spanned 17 seasons (1928-1944). A Phillies mainstay with the exception of 2+ seasons with the Cubbies in the mid-Thirties, Klein racked up four home run titles and led the National League in multiple offensive categories from 1930-33. The 1932 N.L. MVP averaged 36 round-trippers, 139 RBI, 132 runs, 224 base hits, 46 two-baggers and a .359 BA in a five-year span covering 1929-1933.

  • Vada Pinson                  49.3% (249 successful first-to-third advances in 515 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
CIN_1958 6 1 3 2 0 0.500
CIN_1959 48 1 24 22 1 0.500
CIN_1960 37 0 22 13 2 0.595
CIN_1961 35 0 24 11 0 0.686
CIN_1962 33 1 15 16 1 0.455
CIN_1963 22 0 14 7 1 0.636
CIN_1964 35 0 18 16 1 0.514
CIN_1965 40 0 14 25 1 0.350
CIN_1966 30 0 17 13 0 0.567
CIN_1967 34 0 18 16 0 0.529
CIN_1968 26 0 14 11 1 0.538
SLN_1969 34 0 14 20 0 0.412
CLE_1970 26 0 8 17 1 0.308
CLE_1971 20 0 6 14 0 0.300
CAL_1972 32 0 12 20 0 0.375
CAL_1973 19 0 9 10 0 0.474
KCA_1974 26 0 10 15 1 0.385
KCA_1975 12 0 7 5 0 0.583
Totals 515 3 249 253 10 0.483

Vada Pinson recorded at least 20 Win Shares in seven straight seasons (1959-1965). He topped the 200-hit mark four times, received two All-Star invitations and finished his career with more than 2700 base hits and 300 stolen bases. Pinson claimed a Gold Glove Award and placed third in the 1961 N.L. MVP balloting as he batted .343 with 16 jacks.

  • Luis Polonia                 48.2% (134 successful first-to-third advances in 278 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
OAK_1987 22 0 12 10 0 0.545
OAK_1988 15 2 9 3 1 0.600
OAK_1989 9 0 4 5 0 0.444
NYA_1989 17 0 10 7 0 0.588
NYA_1990 2 0 1 1 0 0.500
CAL_1990 27 0 13 13 1 0.481
CAL_1991 39 2 22 13 2 0.564
CAL_1992 37 0 18 17 2 0.486
CAL_1993 23 0 9 14 0 0.391
NYA_1994 24 0 8 14 2 0.333
NYA_1995 16 0 9 6 1 0.563
ATL_1995 4 0 0 4 0 0
ATL_1996 1 0 1 0 0 1.000
BAL_1996 11 0 4 6 1 0.364
DET_1999 11 0 5 6 0 0.455
DET_2000 17 0 7 9 1 0.412
NYA_2000 3 0 2 1 0 0.667
Totals 278 4 134 129 11 0.482

Graduating from 3+ years as a part-time outfielder for the Athletics and Yankees, Luis Polonia settled into the leadoff role for the Angels in 1990 and managed to swipe at least 48 bases per season (1991-93). On the other hand, he also led the American League in caught stealing in each of those campaigns. The .293 career hitter pilfered 321 bases in 12 seasons.

  • Jackie Brandt               48.2% (107 successful first-to-third advances in 222 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
SLN_1956 3 0 0 3 0 0.000
NY1_1956 14 0 5 8 1 0.357
SFN_1958 2 0 1 1 0 0.500
SFN_1959 24 0 13 11 0 0.542
BAL_1960 33 0 21 11 1 0.636
BAL_1961 29 0 15 14 0 0.517
BAL_1962 27 1 13 13 0 0.481
BAL_1963 24 0 12 12 0 0.500
BAL_1964 34 0 12 22 0 0.353
BAL_1965 14 0 6 8 0 0.429
PHI_1966 8 0 4 4 0 0.500
PHI_1967 2 0 1 1 0 0.500
HOU_1967 8 0 4 4 0 0.500
Totals 222 1 107 112 2 0.482

Outfielder Jackie Brandt collected a Gold Glove Award for the San Francisco Giants as a left fielder. Two years later he received an invitation to play in the Mid-Summer Classic as a member of the Baltimore Orioles. Brandt accrued 20 Win Shares in ’61 and batted .297 with a personal-best 93 runs scored.

  • Al Dark                          48.1% (210 successful first-to-third advances in 437 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
BSN_1948 25 0 10 15 0 0.400
BSN_1949 31 0 16 15 0 0.516
NY1_1950 27 0 14 12 1 0.519
NY1_1951 40 0 25 14 1 0.625
NY1_1952 35 0 16 17 2 0.457
NY1_1953 54 0 29 21 4 0.537
NY1_1954 31 0 19 12 0 0.613
NY1_1955 28 0 10 18 0 0.357
NY1_1956 10 0 3 7 0 0.300
SLN_1956 23 0 12 9 2 0.522
SLN_1957 44 0 27 17 0 0.614
SLN_1958 4 0 1 3 0 0.250
CHN_1958 35 0 11 21 3 0.314
CHN_1959 28 0 11 16 1 0.393
PHI_1960 16 0 5 11 0 0.313
MLN_1960 6 0 1 5 0 0.167
Totals 437 0 210 213 14 0.481

“The Swamp Fox” scored at least 90 runs in four consecutive campaigns (1951-54). Al Dark (.322/3/48) rapped 39 doubles for the Boston Braves and secured the 1948 N.L. Rookie of the Year honors. Dark led the League with 41 two-base knocks in 1951 and established career-highs with 23 moon-shots, 88 ribbies and 194 hits two years later.

  • Roger Maris                  48.0% (146 successful first-to-third advances in 304 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
CLE_1957 25 1 7 17 0 0.280
CLE_1958 5 0 2 3 0 0.400
KC1_1958 21 0 12 9 0 0.571
KC1_1959 26 0 11 14 1 0.423
NYA_1960 30 0 15 15 0 0.500
NYA_1961 31 0 16 15 0 0.516
NYA_1962 31 0 22 8 1 0.710
NYA_1963 25 0 13 11 1 0.520
NYA_1964 31 1 14 15 1 0.452
NYA_1965 10 0 1 8 1 0.100
NYA_1966 22 0 9 12 1 0.409
SLN_1967 29 0 15 12 2 0.517
SLN_1968 18 1 9 8 0 0.500
Totals 304 3 146 147 8 0.480

The American League MVP in back-to-back seasons (1960-61) merited four consecutive All-Star nominations. Acquired by the Yankees prior to the 1960 campaign, Roger Maris belted 39 round-trippers and plated 112 baserunners in his first year as a member of the Bronx Bombers. In the following season, Maris battled teammate Mickey Mantle for the home run crown. He emerged with 61 circuit clouts amid controversy surrounding the single-season home run record. Maris’ record stood until 1998 when it was surpassed by Mark McGwire (70) and Sammy Sosa (66).

  • Dan Gladden 48.0% (133 successful first-to-third advances in 277 opps)
Team_Year 1B_BR_Opps 1st-Home 1st-3rd 1st-2nd BR_Outs Pct1st3rd
SFN_1983 4 0 1 3 0 0.250
SFN_1984 27 0 17 10 0 0.630
SFN_1985 23 0 11 12 0 0.478
SFN_1986 19 0 14 5 0 0.737
MIN_1987 23 0 10 13 0 0.435
MIN_1988 34 0 16 18 0 0.471
MIN_1989 36 0 17 19 0 0.472
MIN_1990 23 0 11 12 0 0.478
MIN_1991 33 0 19 14 0 0.576
DET_1992 29 0 8 21 0 0.276
DET_1993 26 1 9 16 0 0.346
Totals 277 1 133 143 0 0.480

“Dazzle” delivered a .351 BA and stole 31 bases in 86 games during his inaugural season, placing fourth in the 1984 N.L. Rookie of the Year balloting. Gladden averaged 27 swipes per year (1984-1990) and scored a career-high 91 runs for the Minnesota Twins in 1988.

Top 100 Baserunners (Career), First to Third Percentage*

(minimum 150 opportunities) 

Player 1st-3rd 1B_BR_Opps Pct1st3rd
Dexter Fowler 112 193 0.580
Glenn Beckert 213 374 0.570
Dave Hollins 123 221 0.557
Willie Mays 332 612 0.542
Mike Trout 82 152 0.539
Chick Hafey 91 170 0.535
Red Kress 84 158 0.532
Pepper Martin 80 151 0.530
Ron LeFlore 109 207 0.527
Shawon Dunston 119 232 0.513
Kiki Cuyler 102 200 0.510
Chone Figgins 142 282 0.504
Carl Reynolds 81 162 0.500
Bobby Richardson 135 270 0.500
Thurman Munson 184 370 0.497
Babe Ruth 83 167 0.497
Julian Javier 167 339 0.493
Ed Morgan 73 150 0.487
Tony Kubek 121 249 0.486
Chuck Klein 144 297 0.485
Vada Pinson 249 515 0.483
Luis Polonia 134 278 0.482
Jackie Brandt 107 222 0.482
Al Dark 210 437 0.481
Roger Maris 146 304 0.480
Dan Gladden 133 277 0.480
Tom Tresh 116 243 0.477
Lonnie Smith 149 313 0.476
Ival Goodman 126 265 0.475
Curt Flood 208 438 0.475
Don Blasingame 178 375 0.475
Bruce Campbell 99 209 0.474
Jim Gilliam 244 516 0.473
Mookie Wilson 109 231 0.472
Elvis Andrus 111 238 0.466
Willie Davis 200 429 0.466
Willie McGee 188 405 0.464
Odell Hale 96 208 0.462
Al Kaline 290 629 0.461
Len Randle 94 207 0.454
Earle Combs 79 174 0.454
Bill Bruton 160 353 0.453
Rod Carew 311 687 0.453
Vic Davalillo 113 250 0.452
Lance Johnson 122 271 0.450
Alfredo Griffin 148 329 0.450
Robby Thompson 124 276 0.449
Dick McAuliffe 180 401 0.449
Todd Hollandsworth 78 174 0.448
Torii Hunter 195 435 0.448
Bobby Avila 137 306 0.448
Mike Cameron 150 336 0.446
Mike Kreevich 75 168 0.446
Luis Aparicio 233 522 0.446
Tommie Agee 91 204 0.446
Bill Terry 103 231 0.446
Ken Landreaux 96 216 0.444
Manny Mota 133 300 0.443
Jeffrey Hammonds 74 167 0.443
Floyd Robinson 109 246 0.443
Bobby Thomson 136 307 0.443
Gene Clines 73 165 0.442
Jackie Robinson 153 346 0.442
Roy White 224 508 0.441
Lyn Lary 104 236 0.441
Charlie Gehringer 115 261 0.441
Lou Gehrig 163 370 0.441
Bump Wills 81 184 0.440
Earl Averill 165 375 0.440
Tony Scott 66 150 0.440
Pat Sheridan 66 150 0.440
Enos Cabell 127 289 0.439
Peewee Reese 254 580 0.438
Gil Coan 77 176 0.438
Frank Robinson 294 672 0.438
Freddy Lindstrom 80 183 0.437
Red Rolfe 127 291 0.436
Bill Tuttle 137 314 0.436
Erick Aybar 92 211 0.436
Willie Crawford 109 250 0.436
Ken Boyer 203 466 0.436
Travis Fryman 145 333 0.435
John Stone 80 184 0.435
Zeke Bonura 79 182 0.434
Ripper Collins 79 182 0.434
Chase Utley 139 321 0.433
Gary DiSarcina 87 201 0.433
Don Demeter 77 178 0.433
Jesus Alou 96 222 0.432
Gee Walker 103 239 0.431
Harlond Clift 87 202 0.431
Jimmie Hall 65 151 0.430
Tom Goodwin 94 219 0.429
Lou Piniella 142 331 0.429
Dick Howser 75 175 0.429
Claudell Washington 140 327 0.428
Lew Riggs 68 159 0.428
Brian Jordan 110 258 0.426
Hughie Critz 65 153 0.425
Al Smith 155 365 0.425


First-to-Third Percentage (Career), Honorable Mention

(50-150 opportunities)

Player 1st-3rd 1B_BR_Opps Pct1st3rd
Ty Cline 72 123 0.585
Ed Stroud 57 102 0.559
Wayne Comer 28 51 0.549
Joe Foy 74 137 0.540
Lou B. Johnson 52 97 0.536
Keith A. Miller 41 77 0.532
Curtis Goodwin 27 52 0.519
Wayne Kirby 38 74 0.514
Roy Hughes 69 136 0.507
Johnny Watwood 37 73 0.507
Sherry Robertson 38 75 0.507
Harry Davis 29 58 0.500


Top 100 Baserunners (Single-Season), First to Third Percentage*

(minimum 20 opportunities)

Player Team_Year 1st-3rd 1B_BR_Opps Pct1st3rd
Willie Mays SFN_1963 24 30 0.800
Joe DiMaggio NYA_1936 16 21 0.762
Willie Davis LAN_1964 19 25 0.760
Ellis Burton CHN_1963 15 20 0.750
Don Landrum CHN_1965 15 20 0.750
Ty Cline SFN_1968 18 24 0.750
Lance Johnson CHA_1990 21 28 0.750
Kenny Lofton CLE_1993 26 35 0.743
Glenn Beckert CHN_1967 39 53 0.736
Hank Aaron MLN_1960 19 26 0.731
Chuck Klein PHI_1932 24 33 0.727
Augie Galan CHN_1935 24 33 0.727
Len Gabrielson SFN_1965 16 22 0.727
Pepper Martin SLN_1931 18 25 0.720
Willie Mays SFN_1970 18 25 0.720
Lenny Dykstra NYN_1988 15 21 0.714
Cristian Guzman MIN_2001 15 21 0.714
Denny Hocking MIN_2001 15 21 0.714
Roger Maris NYA_1962 22 31 0.710
Lyn Lary NYA_1930 17 24 0.708
Rod Carew CAL_1985 17 24 0.708
Leon Wagner LAA_1962 24 34 0.706
Billy Werber BOS_1934 14 20 0.700
Luis Aparicio BAL_1964 14 20 0.700
Robby Thompson SFN_1987 14 20 0.700
Adam Comorosky PIT_1930 23 33 0.697
Eric McNair PHA_1933 16 23 0.696
Don Demeter PHI_1963 16 23 0.696
Juan Beniquez TEX_1978 16 23 0.696
Gary DiSarcina ANA_1997 16 23 0.696
Willie Mays NY1_1954 20 29 0.690
Bobby Bonds SFN_1969 20 29 0.690
Dave Hollins PHI_1993 22 32 0.688
Vada Pinson CIN_1961 24 35 0.686
Reggie Smith BOS_1970 26 38 0.684
Roy White NYA_1970 28 41 0.683
Brendan Ryan SEA_2011 15 22 0.682
Willie Davis LAN_1969 17 25 0.680
Pete Rose CIN_1967 21 31 0.677
Curt Flood SLN_1969 27 40 0.675
Babe Ruth NYA_1932 24 36 0.667
Red Kress SLA_1938 14 21 0.667
Peewee Reese BRO_1951 34 51 0.667
Pat Kelly CHA_1972 14 21 0.667
Chet Lemon DET_1987 16 24 0.667
Ruben Sierra TEX_1987 18 27 0.667
Keith Miller NYN_1990 14 21 0.667
Dave Hollins ANA_1998 16 24 0.667
Chase Utley PHI_2011 14 21 0.667
Reggie Smith BOS_1971 23 35 0.657
Larry Walker COL_1997 23 35 0.657
Arky Vaughan PIT_1934 21 32 0.656
Jim Gilliam BRO_1955 21 32 0.656
Willie Mays SFN_1967 21 32 0.656
Jose Cardenal CHN_1972 21 32 0.656
Ron LeFlore DET_1975 21 32 0.656
Steve Sax LAN_1984 21 32 0.656
Rickey Henderson NYA_1985 21 32 0.656
Ival Goodman CIN_1935 19 29 0.655
Dexter Fowler COL_2013 19 29 0.655
Tommie Agee CHA_1967 17 26 0.654
Joe Foy BOS_1968 17 26 0.654
Xander Bogaerts BOS_2015 17 26 0.654
Chuck Hinton WS2_1963 15 23 0.652
Dexter Fowler HOU_2014 15 23 0.652
Tommy Harper CIN_1967 13 20 0.650
Donn Clendenon NYN_1970 13 20 0.650
R.J. Reynolds PIT_1987 13 20 0.650
Jim Gilliam BRO_1954 24 37 0.649
Jerry Adair BAL_1962 24 37 0.649
Julian Javier SLN_1963 20 31 0.645
Don Baylor NYA_1985 20 31 0.645
Devon White CAL_1989 20 31 0.645
Bruce Campbell SLA_1932 18 28 0.643
Don Blasingame SLN_1957 36 56 0.643
Paul Blair BAL_1969 18 28 0.643
Lenny Dykstra NYN_1987 18 28 0.643
Torii Hunter ANA_2008 18 28 0.643
Dexter Fowler COL_2012 18 28 0.643
Glenn Beckert CHN_1966 25 39 0.641
Al Wiggins SDN_1984 25 39 0.641
Ed Morgan BOS_1934 16 25 0.640
Mike Kreevich CHA_1939 16 25 0.640
Floyd Robinson CHA_1966 16 25 0.640
Mark McLemore CAL_1987 16 25 0.640
Billy Hatcher BOS_1993 16 25 0.640
Pat Meares MIN_1995 16 25 0.640
Minnie Minoso CLE_1959 23 36 0.639
Julian Javier SLN_1962 23 36 0.639
Sherm Lollar CHA_1958 14 22 0.636
Jackie Brandt BAL_1960 21 33 0.636
Vada Pinson CIN_1963 14 22 0.636
Glenn Beckert CHN_1968 28 44 0.636
Bob Bailor TOR_1980 14 22 0.636
Jeff Huson TEX_1990 14 22 0.636
Mike Cameron SDN_2006 14 22 0.636
Jason Heyward ATL_2011 14 22 0.636
Odell Hale CLE_1936 26 41 0.634
Pete Rose CIN_1966 26 41 0.634
Charlie Gehringer DET_1933 19 30 0.633
Alfonso Soriano NYA_2002 19 30 0.633

Station to Station

One would expect to find an abundance of catchers, first basemen and designated hitters on this list, so I will highlight several individuals that do not fit within those assumptions.

Hank Blalock was the primary third baseman for Texas from 2003-2009. He scored 107 runs and notched 23 Win Shares in his finest campaign (2004) when he swatted 32 big-flies and plated 110 baserunners for the Rangers. He pilfered a personal-best four bases in 2007 and registered 14 SB for his career.

Outfielder Cito Gaston accrued a career-high 92 runs in his lone All-Star season (1970). He slugged 29 round-trippers and collected 93 ribbies for the Padres while batting .318. Gaston’s 24 Win Shares in ’70 more than doubled his output from his next best year, 1973. He managed the Toronto Blue Jays to successive World Series championships in 1992-93.

Greg “The Bull” Luzinski mashed 307 career home runs and averaged 112 RBI in a four year span covering 1975-78. The two-time runner-up in the National League MVP balloting coaxed 100 walks in ’78 and clubbed 30+ home runs in a season four times, yet he never scored 100 runs in a single campaign. Luzinski’s 54% stolen base success rate provides further proof that the “Running of the Bulls” might be a misnomer.

Jason Kubel played 333 games as a designated hitter during his 10-year career, however he also logged over 600 games in the outfielder. Kubel thumped 30 circuit clouts for the Diamondbacks in 2012, but he supplied maximum production for Minnesota in ’09 with a .300 BA, 28 taters and 103 ribbies. He nabbed 5 of his 12 career stolen bases in 2005 and topped out at 75 runs scored (2012).

Ralph Kiner clubbed 369 four-baggers in his 10-year career and paced the Senior Circuit in home runs for seven straight seasons (1946-1952). He surpassed the century mark in runs scored six times including a League-leading 124 in ’51. 38% of his career runs are a direct result of trotting out rounding the bases after depositing one in the cheap seats. Kiner averaged two stolen bases per year.

David Ortiz entered the 500-home run club in 2015. “Big Papi” has averaged one stolen base per year since achieving full-time status in 2000. Similar to Kiner, 37.5% of the runs tallied by the “Cookie Monster” are the product of the long ball.

Worst 100 Baserunners (Career), First to Third Percentage*

(minimum 150 opportunities)

Player 1st-3rd 1B_BR_Opps Pct1st3rd
Bengie Molina 19 248 0.077
Ryan Howard 27 281 0.096
Prince Fielder 38 384 0.099
Hank Blalock 18 175 0.103
Cito Gaston 18 161 0.112
Billy Butler 31 277 0.112
Earl Williams 20 175 0.114
Darrin Fletcher 19 165 0.115
Jason Varitek 38 311 0.122
Ed Bailey 28 219 0.128
Victor Martinez 49 380 0.129
Rod Barajas 20 152 0.132
Joe Ad**** 45 331 0.136
Mike Piazza 55 403 0.136
Greg Luzinski 53 387 0.137
Carlos Delgado 68 495 0.137
Jason Kubel 24 173 0.139
Paul Konerko 73 523 0.140
Gus Triandos 30 213 0.141
Cecil Fielder 39 274 0.142
Ralph Kiner 43 301 0.143
Brian McCann 36 251 0.143
Buster Posey 22 151 0.146
Mike Macfarlane 28 191 0.147
David Ortiz 69 466 0.148
Milt May 34 229 0.148
Rudy York 27 178 0.152
Willie Aikens 24 158 0.152
Adrian Gonzalez 55 359 0.153
Clay Dalrymple 25 161 0.155
Chris Davis 27 173 0.156
Mark McGwire 69 438 0.158
Jeff Reed 28 176 0.159
Jim Sundberg 61 382 0.160
Pablo Sandoval 35 218 0.161
Justin Morneau 44 272 0.162
Ty Wigginton 35 216 0.162
Mo Vaughn 54 333 0.162
Tony Clark 36 220 0.164
Darren Daulton 39 238 0.164
Dan Wilson 37 225 0.164
George McQuinn 34 206 0.165
Pedro Feliz 31 187 0.166
Miguel Montero 33 199 0.166
Frank Thomas 112 673 0.166
Bernie Carbo 34 204 0.167
Rick Cerone 39 234 0.167
Gus Mancuso 31 186 0.167
Luke Scott 25 150 0.167
Ron Coomer 27 161 0.168
Greg Myers 28 166 0.169
Del Rice 27 159 0.170
Ernie Lombardi 51 300 0.170
Jhonny Peralta 58 341 0.170
Yadier Molina 49 288 0.170
Fred McGriff 93 544 0.171
Nelson Cruz 33 192 0.172
Adam Dunn 69 400 0.173
Charles Johnson 30 173 0.173
Walker Cooper 31 178 0.174
Jim Gentile 36 205 0.176
Mike Stanley 54 307 0.176
Dave Magadan 50 284 0.176
Alvin Davis 46 261 0.176
John Mayberry 64 362 0.177
Ted Kluszewski 59 333 0.177
Ramon Hernandez 48 270 0.178
Jim Leyritz 31 174 0.178
Smoky Burgess 42 235 0.179
Adam LaRoche 54 302 0.179
Lee Handley 27 150 0.180
A.J. Pierzynski 64 354 0.181
Ferris Fain 56 309 0.181
Bruce Benedict 28 154 0.182
Mickey Owen 30 165 0.182
Carmelo Martinez 34 186 0.183
Johnny Edwards 39 213 0.183
Ted Williams 98 535 0.183
Andre Ethier 61 333 0.183
Walt Dropo 38 207 0.184
Eddie Robinson 48 261 0.184
Randy Hundley 30 163 0.184
Mike Lowell 51 277 0.184
John Mabry 28 152 0.184
Joe DeMaestri 33 179 0.184
Jody Davis 31 166 0.187
John Olerud 102 545 0.187
Gabe Kapler 29 154 0.188
J.T. Snow 77 405 0.190
Troy O’Leary 43 226 0.190
Jerry Grote 44 231 0.190
Jose Lopez 36 189 0.190
Willie Stargell 92 483 0.190
John Buck 29 152 0.191
Dave Valle 29 152 0.191
Ron Hassey 39 204 0.191
Mike Lamb 31 162 0.191
Aramis Ramirez 78 407 0.192
Mike Lieberthal 46 240 0.192
Dave Nilsson 29 151 0.192

First-to-Third Percentage (Career), Dishonorable Mention

(50-150 opportunities)

Player 1st-3rd 1B_BR_Opps Pct1st3rd
Phil Niekro 3 58 0.052
Mike Jacobs 6 89 0.067
Ryan Garko 7 98 0.071
Mike LaValliere 10 139 0.072
Matt Adams 4 55 0.073
Jim Bunning 4 53 0.075
Brayan Pena 8 105 0.076
Al Libke 4 51 0.078
Devin Mesoraco 4 51 0.078
Jerry Reuss 4 51 0.078

Worst 100 Baserunners (Single-Season), First to Third Percentage*

(minimum 20 opportunities)

Player Team_Year 1st-3rd 1B_BR_Opps Pct1st3rd
Mike Piazza LAN_1993 0 37 0.000
Carlos Delgado TOR_2001 0 36 0.000
Frank Thomas OAK_2006 0 34 0.000
Tino Martinez TBA_2004 0 32 0.000
Lance Berkman HOU_2005 0 32 0.000
Frank McCormick PHI_1946 0 27 0.000
Gus Triandos BAL_1960 0 27 0.000
Tony Oliva MIN_1975 0 27 0.000
Hank Blalock TEX_2005 0 27 0.000
Craig Reynolds SEA_1977 0 25 0.000
Phil Plantier SDN_1993 0 25 0.000
Starlin Castro CHN_2014 0 25 0.000
Ryan Howard PHI_2009 0 24 0.000
Chili Davis KCA_1997 0 23 0.000
Dave Chalk CAL_1974 0 22 0.000
Bengie Molina SFN_2009 0 22 0.000
Paul Waner BRO_1943 0 21 0.000
Butch Hobson CAL_1981 0 21 0.000
Cecil Fielder NYA_1997 0 21 0.000
David Segui TEX_2000 0 21 0.000
Bengie Molina SFN_2007 0 21 0.000
Nick Castellanos DET_2015 0 21 0.000
Alex Grammas SLN_1954 0 20 0.000
Rick Dempsey BAL_1977 0 20 0.000
Bengie Molina ANA_2004 0 20 0.000
Prince Fielder MIL_2010 1 62 0.016
Prince Fielder MIL_2009 1 45 0.022
Victor Martinez DET_2014 1 44 0.023
Mike Piazza LAN_1997 1 41 0.024
Willie Aikens KCA_1980 1 39 0.026
Justin Morneau MIN_2006 1 36 0.028
Dick Wakefield DET_1947 1 32 0.031
Ernie Lombardi CIN_1940 1 31 0.032
Billy Herman BRO_1941 1 31 0.032
Billy Butler KCA_2014 1 31 0.032
Orlando Cepeda BOS_1973 1 30 0.033
J.T. Snow SFN_2002 1 30 0.033
Bill Mueller BOS_2004 1 30 0.033
Raul Ibanez PHI_2011 1 30 0.033
Manny Trillo PHI_1982 1 29 0.034
Buster Posey SFN_2015 1 29 0.034
Mike Jacobs FLO_2006 1 28 0.036
Prince Fielder MIL_2007 1 28 0.036
Ryan Howard PHI_2014 1 28 0.036
Pete Coscarart BRO_1940 1 27 0.037
George Foster CIN_1981 1 27 0.037
Steve Balboni KCA_1985 1 27 0.037
Hank Blalock TEX_2003 1 27 0.037
Bob Lillis HOU_1962 1 26 0.038
Bill Madlock DET_1987 1 26 0.038
Frank Catalanotto TOR_2006 1 26 0.038
Mike Jacobs KCA_2009 1 26 0.038
Tony Lazzeri NYA_1937 1 25 0.040
Jimmie Foxx BOS_1941 1 25 0.040
Marty Marion SLN_1950 1 25 0.040
Sid Gordon PIT_1954 1 25 0.040
Gus Bell CIN_1958 1 25 0.040
Johnny Edwards CIN_1965 1 25 0.040
Cito Gaston SDN_1971 1 25 0.040
Greg Luzinski PHI_1972 1 25 0.040
Jason Thompson DET_1979 1 25 0.040
Craig Biggio HOU_2000 1 25 0.040
Greg Myers TOR_2003 1 25 0.040
Jack Hannahan OAK_2008 1 25 0.040
Billy Butler KCA_2011 1 25 0.040
Pablo Sandoval SFN_2012 1 25 0.040
Sherm Lollar CHA_1961 1 24 0.042
Jim Sundberg KCA_1986 1 24 0.042
Mike Greenwell BOS_1991 1 24 0.042
Dave Nilsson MIL_1999 1 24 0.042
Charles Johnson FLO_2001 1 24 0.042
Casey Kotchman CLE_2012 1 24 0.042
Chris Carter HOU_2014 1 24 0.042
David Ortiz BOS_2015 1 24 0.042
Myril Hoag NYA_1937 1 23 0.043
Milt May SFN_1982 1 23 0.043
Paul Sorrento TBA_1998 1 23 0.043
Mark McGwire SLN_2000 1 23 0.043
Jason Varitek BOS_2000 1 23 0.043
Johnny Estrada ATL_2004 1 23 0.043
Brian McCann NYA_2014 1 23 0.043
Dick Siebert PHA_1939 1 22 0.045
Andy Seminick PHI_1946 1 22 0.045
Cecil Travis WS1_1946 1 22 0.045
Bob Nieman CHA_1955 1 22 0.045
Gorman Thomas MIL_1978 1 22 0.045
Kirt Manwaring SFN_1993 1 22 0.045
Geoff Jenkins MIL_2003 1 22 0.045
Ronny Paulino PIT_2006 1 22 0.045
Jorge Cantu FLO_2008 1 22 0.045
Aramis Ramirez CHN_2009 1 22 0.045
Matt LaPorta CLE_2010 1 22 0.045
Brett Wallace HOU_2011 1 22 0.045
Jhonny Peralta DET_2012 1 22 0.045
A.J. Ellis LAN_2014 1 22 0.045

On Deck

Taking the Extra Base:  The Teams

Further Reading

Dewan, John. Chase Utley: Best Baserunner in MLB. October 12, 2011.

Eastham, Cliff. Top 10 Base Runners in MLB Since 1954. August 12, 2009.

Lichtman, Mitchel. Ultimate Base Running Primer. May 24, 2011.

Neyer, Rob. MLB’s Best (And Worst) Baserunners. May 24, 2011.

Is Willie Wilson baseball’s best baserunner ever?. May 9, 2014.

References and Resources

Albert, Jim and Max Marchi. Analyzing Baseball Data with R. Boca Raton, FL.: CRC Press, 2014. Print.

Baseball-Reference

James, Bill. The Bill James Baseball Abstract 1984. New York, NY.: Ballantine Books, 1984. Print.

Retrosheet Event Files

The information used here was obtained free of charge from and is copyrighted by Retrosheet. Interested parties may contact Retrosheet at “www.retrosheet.org”.

SABR Baseball Biography Project

About the Author

I am a New Jersey native with a passion for baseball, statistics, computers and video games who enjoys spending quality time with his family.

My book “Hardball Retrospective” is available in digital format on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, GooglePlay, iTunes and KoboBooks. The paperback edition is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and CreateSpace. Supplemental Statistics, Charts and Graphs along with a discussion forum are offered at TuataraSoftware.com.

Don Daglow (Intellivision World Series Major League Baseball, Earl Weaver Baseball, Tony LaRussa Baseball) contributed the foreword for Hardball Retrospective. The foreword and preview of “Hardball Retrospective” are accessible here.

Comments

3 Responses to “Taking the Extra Base:  The Players”
  1. Cliff Blau says:

    This is very nice. I don’t understand, though, why you are using “NA” to represent zero. NA commonly means either Not Applicable or Not Available. If you know a datum is zero, you should put a zero.

  2. Derek Bain says:

    @Cliff Blau@Cliff Blau – I performed the majority of my work for this article in R, where missing values are represented by the symbol NA (not available). I believe that the NA values were introduced when I merged several data frames into a single table. You are correct, the NA references in my tables are equivalent to zeroes.

  3. Derek Bain says:

    @Derek Bain I have updated the article per Cliff’s comment, replacing the NA values with zeroes. I also corrected an error with the results from the “Worst 100 Baserunners (Single-Season), First to Third Percentage*” table. The table reflects the proper entries now.

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