Thursday, March 13, 2008

6'6" and Stealing

There haven't been that many players in major league history listed at 6'6" or taller. In fact, only 245 players to appear in at least one game are known to have stood over 78 inches tall. Height is unknown for many players in the nineteenth century, but it's unlikely many were over 6'6" given the average male was about 5'7" in that period, it's possible there were a few very tall players. Of course, very tall players are rare even now: of the 14,325 players whose heights are known, the 245 players mentioned above make up only 1.7% of the total. That's about 1 in 59, or roughly two players for every five current 25-man rosters.

Of the tall 245, a full 219 (89.4%) of them were pitchers. That leaves only 26 position players among the group. Actually, Dick Hall kind of screws things up, but I counted him as a pitcher. In any case, of those 26 position players, only thirteen of them had at least one stolen base in their career. Six of the pitchers stole at least one base. Below are the nineteen tall base thieves (active players in red).

Most Career Stolen Bases by Players 6'6" or Taller
  1. Dave Winfield, 223
  2. Darryl Strawberry, 221
  3. Dave Kingman, 85
  4. Adam Dunn, 57
  5. Corey Hart, 30
  6. Howie Schultz, 15
  7. Richie Sexson, 13
  8. Walt Bond, 10
  9. Frank Howard, 8
  10. Tony Clark, 6
  11. Dick Hall, 6
  12. Ron Jackson, 6
  13. Rick Sutcliffe, 4
  14. Cy Swaim, 3
  15. J.R. Richard, 2
  16. Derek Lowe, 1
  17. Val Pascucci, 1
  18. Ryan Minor, 1
  19. Ed Halicki, 1
The pitchers on the list are Hall, Sutcliffe, Swaim, Richard, Lowe, and Halicki.

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