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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / Top-16 Second Baseman of All-Time

Top-16 Second Baseman of All-Time

Who was the greatest?
Publish Date: 03/12/2023
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa

Top 16

Second base is considered easier than playing SS or third base, but the position requires a lot of skill and athletic ability. Today we will look at the greatest to ever play the position. Active players are not included on this list. Robinson Cano is not on this list but as soon as we are sure he is retired he will be on this list.

16) Nellie Fox

Fox started his MLB career in 1947 with the Philadelphia Athletics when he was 19. Fox spent 19 seasons in major league baseball, finishing his career with a batting average of.288, 35 home runs and 790 RBIs. He also had 355 doubles and 112 triples. 2,663 hits were recorded, as well as 1,279 runs.

Nellie Fox won the Golden Glove in 1957. He also received two additional Gold Glove Awards after that season. Fox was the sixth most active player in his entire career, playing 798 consecutive games. Fox was the AL MVP and led the White Sox to their first pennant after 40 years in 1959. In 1997, Fox was inducted into Baseball Hall of Fame.

Video: Nellie Fox Society Video

Nellie Fox Society Video

15) Bobby Doerr

Doerr was an uncommon second baseman, as he bats fifth in the Boston Red Sox lineup, just behind Ted Williams and Jimmie Foxx. Doerr ended his career with a batting average of.288, 23 home runs and 1,247 RBIs. He also scored 1,094 runs.

Red Sox second baseman Doerr was selected for nine All-Star Games. He batted.300 or higher three times and scored 100 runs or more six times. Doerr was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame on August 26, 1986.

Video: WS1946 Gm4: Doerr hits two-run homer in 8th

WS1946 Gm4: Doerr hits two-run homer in 8th

14) Red Schoendienst

Red was 22 when he began his MLB career with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1945. Red was the Cards’ starting second baseman for 13 seasons. Red was the NL’s top stealer during his rookie season. Red led the NL in doubles one season and collected 200 hits at the age of 34.

Schoendienst’s career average was.289 at home with 84 runs, 427 doubles and 773 RBIs. He also scored 1,223 runs. In 1989, Red was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Red, who had a long and successful career on the baseball field, was also a successful coach and manager. He wore the St. Louis uniform for almost 67 years and spent 74 years in a baseball-related uniform.

Video: Red Schoednienst Highlight Video

Red Schoednienst Highlight Video

13) Frankie Frisch

Frisch hit over .300 13 times, and stole more than 20 bases 11 times. Frisch was the centerpiece of the 1921-1924 New York Giants pennant winners, with 1921 and 1922 World Series wins to their credit.

Video: Frankie Frisch - Baseball Hall of Fame Biographies

Frankie Frisch – Baseball Hall of Fame Biographies

12) Charlie Gehringer

He only managed 20 homers once but slammed double-digit bombs 11 times.  He hit over .300 13 times and reached 200 hits seven times. Gehringer was a great fielder in addition to being an amazingly consistent hitter.

Video: Michigan Baseball Hall of Famer: Charlie Gehringer

Michigan Baseball Hall of Famer: Charlie Gehringer

11) Craig Biggio

Biggio was a scrappy player that did a lot well.  He got on base, stole bases, hit for power, played every position except third and first, and did it for two decades in Houston, getting overlooked year after year because of the market in which he and his teammate Jeff Bagwell played. Biggio accounted for over 3,000 hits and was beaned an astonishing 285 times during his career.

Video: Craig Biggio Career Highlights

Craig Biggio Career Highlights

10) Lou Whitaker

Whitaker is one of the most underrated infielders of all time. Whitaker’s 19-year career with the Detroit Tigers saw him achieve a.276 batting average, 244 home runs and 1084 RBI. He also scored 1386 runs, 2369 base hits, and 143 stolen bases. In 1977, he was awarded the Rookie Award of the Year.

He was also an excellent defensive second baseman, winning three consecutive golden gloves in the mid-80s. He was also one of the most outstanding hitting infielders of all time. He was awarded four Silver Slugging Awards and was named to the All-Star Team five times. Three of those were at second.

Video: How Sweet It Is: The Lou Whitaker Story

How Sweet It Is: The Lou Whitaker Story

9) Roberto Alomar

Alomar hit .300 or higher nine times, double-digit long balls nine times, and had 20 stolen bases ten times.  All in all, a Hall of Fame career

Video: Roberto Alomar Career Highlights

Roberto Alomar Career Highlights

8) Jeff Kent

Kent was a tremendous offensive second baseman, leading all second basemen with 377 home runs. Kent has a.290 batting average, 1518 RBI and 1320 runs scored. He also has 560 doubles, 2461 base hits, and a.290 batting average. He was named to the All-Star Team five times. He started at second for four.

His 2000 best season was with the Giants, where he had a.334 batting average, 33 home runs and 125 RBI’s. He also scored 114 runs, stole 12 bases, and won the NL MVP Award. He was a poor defensive player and had issues in the dugout. His only World Series appearance saw him lose.

Video: Jeff Kent Baseball Career Highlights

Jeff Kent Baseball Career Highlights

7) Jackie Robinson

Robinson was a tremendous athlete that did it all on the baseball field.  He hit double-digit homers nine of his ten years in the MLB, hit over .300 six times, had an on base percentage of over .400 six times, slugged .500 five times, and stole double-digit bases nine of ten years. Robinson would rank even higher if his entire career had been in the MLB.

Video: Jackie Robinson Career Highlights

Jackie Robinson Career Highlights

6) Rod Carew

Carew was the Tony Gwynn and Ichiro Suzuki of his time. He was an expert at bat control and one the greatest bunters in baseball’s history. He spent a lot of his career in the low-scoring 1970s. He won seven batting titles and hit.328 in his lifetime. In 1977, he batted.388. He was moved to first base halfway through the course of his career but would be more comfortable as a second baseman.

Video: Rod Carew Highlights

Rod Carew Highlights

5) Ryne Sandberg

He had an extremely productive eight years out of nine years; he hit double-digit deep balls 11 times, including a 40-homer season, in addition to stealing 20 or more bags nine times. Sandberg was one of the first power-speed second basemen in baseball, and was someone Chicago fans absolutely adored during the ’80s and ’90s.

Video: Ryne Sandberg Highlights | The Sandberg Game & More From Ryno's Hall of Fame Career

Ryne Sandberg Highlights | The Sandberg Game & More From Ryno’s Hall of Fame Career

4) Napoleon Lajoie

Lajoie averaged over .300 15 times, including five batting titles and a magical year where he hit .426. Craig Biggio hit a ton of doubles, but Lajoie hit more. His .338 lifetime average is hard to ignore.

Video: NAPOLÉON LAJOIE

NAPOLÉON LAJOIE

3) Eddie Collins

Collins hit .300 16 full seasons—but he didn’t just hit .300.  He hit higher than .320 14 times, .330 12 times, .340 ten times, .360 three times and .370 once.  Collins rarely struck out, and he took a good amount of walks.

He was also great with the glove with 3315 hits, more hits than any second baseman in history.

Video: EDDIE COLLINS MLB HALL OF FAME CAREER EDDIE COLLINS MLB CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

EDDIE COLLINS MLB HALL OF FAME CAREER EDDIE COLLINS MLB CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

2) Rogers Hornsby

Hornsby hit above .300 in 14 of his 15 full seasons, 7 of which were batting titles.  He hit .400 or higher THREE TIMES.  He led the league in on-base percentage nine times and led the league in slugging nine times as well.  Hornsby ended his career with an OPS above 1.000.  I dropped him to third on my list because of his fielding; he is not the greatest fielder, and the guys above him are much better at fielding the ball.

Video: Rogers Hornsby Highlights

Rogers Hornsby Highlights

1) Joe Morgan

He was an integral part of the Big Red Machine and one of Cincinnati’s table setters, along with Pete Rose.

At 5’7″, Morgan got a ton out of his small frame.  He hit double-digit homers 13 times and stole 20 bags 14 times, including 60 bases three times.  His .271 average may not get anyone excited, but how about his .392 OBP?  Morgan never struck out, and he took a ton of walks, making his .271 average forgivable. He was outstanding with the glove and very rarely ever struck out.

Video: Joe Morgan Career Highlights

Joe Morgan Career Highlights

Honorable mentions

Dustin Pedroia

Frank White

Bobby Grich

Chase Utley

Willie Randolph

Billy Herman

Eddie Stanky

 

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