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Ranking the 10 Greatest Second Baseman in MLB History

Greatest Second Baseman in MLB History

In the middle of the infield, Major League Baseball has plenty of talent. Moreover, many second basemen in the league can produce web gems on the field and contribute at the plate. At this position, many players are capable of playing across the diamond at a high level. 

Hence, you may wonder who the greatest second baseman in MLB history is? Well, there are plenty of them, but we have picked the 10 among the hundreds of second basemen. Read on to know about them.

#10. Rod Carew

Rod Carew

Rod Carew #29 of the Minnesota Twins bats against the Baltimore Orioles during an Major League Baseball game circa 1974 at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore, Maryland. Carew played for the Twins from 1967-78. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)

In his career, Rod Carnew played first base, second base and coached for the Minnesota Twins and California Angels of Major League Baseball (MLB). In the history of baseball, Carew is considered one of the greatest hitters. Over his 19 years with the Twins and Angels, he averaged .328, hit 92 home runs, drove in 1015 runs, scored 1424 runs, and stole 353 bases. In 1967, he won the Rookie of the Year Award.  

From 1972 to 1975, he won four consecutive batting titles. He won the AL MVP award in 1977 after hitting .388 and scoring 128 runs while hitting 14 home runs, 100 RBI, and 100 runs. Additionally, he ranks 22nd in total hits all-time. 

#9. Nap Lajoie

Nap Lajoie

Nap Lajoie of the Cleveland Naps poses for a portrait circa 1906. He played for the Cleveland Naps from 1905-1914. (Photo by National Baseball Hall of Fame Library/MLB via Getty Images)

A second baseman and player-manager, Napoleon Lajoie (September 5, 1874 – February 7, 1959) was an American professional baseball player. The Frenchman, as he is called, played baseball for the Philadelphia Phillies, Philadelphia Athletics (twice), and Cleveland Naps in Major League Baseball (MLB) between 1896 and 1916. 

Lajoie’s first season was 1896 with the Philadelphia Phillies when he hit .326 in 39 games. During the next 11 seasons, he would hit over .300 almost every year. In 1896, Lajoie joined the Philadelphia Phillies of the National League (NL). During his career, Lajoie led the league with a batting average of .426 and 14 home runs. He had 125 runs batted in as well. His other league-leading statistics were hits, doubles, runs, and total bases. The .426 average of Lajoie in the modern era is the highest of any hitter in all of baseball history.

#8. Jeff Kent

Jeffrey Franklin Kent was born on March 7, 1968. In the past, he played second base for professional baseball teams in the United States. In MLB, he played for the Toronto Blue Jays, New York Mets, Cleveland Indians, San Francisco Giants, Houston Astros, and Los Angeles Dodgers from 1992 to 2008.

Kent led all second basemen in home runs with 377, making him one of the greatest offensive players ever. In addition, he has 1518 RBI, 1320 runs scored, 560 doubles, and 2461 hits. Four of his appearances at second base were as a starter on the All-Star team. His leadership as the all-time leader in home runs among second basemen has earned him the Most Valuable Player award in the National League in 2000. His best season came in 2000 with the Giants, where he had a .334 average, 33 home runs, 125 RBI’s, 114 runs scored, and 12 stolen bases, and won the NL MVP award.

#7. Robinson Canó

Robinson Canó

Robinson Cano #24 of the New York Mets bats against the Washington Nationals during game 1 of a double header at Nationals Park on September 26, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images)

Robinson José Canó was born on October 22, 1982. In Major League Baseball (MLB), he plays second base for the New York Mets. Canó, born in San Pedro de Macor’s, Dominican Republic, joined the Yankees as an amateur free agent in 2001. His accomplishments include 8 MLB All-Stars, 5 Silver Slugger Award winners, and 2 Gold Glove Award winners, as well as winning a 2009 World Series championship with the Yankees.

The addition of Bret Boone to this list would bump Tony Lazzeri off and require the removal of Tony Lazzeri. Canó hit 107 homers over five seasons in Seattle while posting a solid batting line of .296 / .353 / .472. In 2018, he was also punished by an 80-game suspension for PED use, which slightly weakened his overall ranking.

#6. Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson’s stance at bat while while working out with Montreal Royals during traing at Stanford, FLorida. PHOTO, UNDATED.

A professional baseball player who was the first African American to play in Major League Baseball (MLB), Jack Roosevelt Robinson (January 31, 1919 – October 24, 1972) was a well-known American professional baseball player. The Brooklyn Dodgers’ first baseman, Robert Robinson, broke baseball’s color line on April 15, 1947. In addition to being one of the greatest players ever to play the game, he was also one of the greatest executives. He had a career average of .311 with 137 home runs, 734 RBI, 947 runs scored, 1518 base hits, and 197 steals in 10 years as a professional.

In four of his appearances as a second baseman, he was part of four All-Star teams. During his time as a Dodgers manager, he won six World Series championships and was an all-star in major tournaments as well. As well as winning the National League MVP award in 1949, he also won the batting title by hitting .342 while collecting 16 home runs and 124 RBIs.

#5. Eddie Collins

Eddie Collins

Eddie Collins of the White Sox takes batting practice before a game in 1917 in Comiskey Park in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo Reproduction by Transcendental Graphics/Getty Images)

Eddie Collins (May 2, 1887 – March 25, 1951) was an American professional baseball player, manager, and executive named Edward Trowbridge Collins Sr. . Between 1906 and 1930, he was a second baseman for the Philadelphia Athletics and the Chicago White Sox. The greatest hitter of all time was Collins. While playing with the White Sox and Athletics, he averaged .333 in his 25-year career. His home runs were only 47, but he had 1300 RBI, 1821 runs, scored 744 stolen bases, and 3315 base hits. During his time with the Athletics, he led the team to four World Series wins.

With an average of .344 and an on-base percentage of .452, he won the AL MVP with the Athletics in 1914. The fifth-place finisher in MVP voting five times ranks seventh all-time in career stolen bases.

#4. Roberto Alomar 

Roberto Alomar 

Roberto Alomar of the Cleveland Indians looks on against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on May 31, 1999 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Sporting News via Getty Images via Getty Images)

Roberto Alomar Velázquez was born on February 5, 1968. He was nicknamed “Robbie” He is a Puerto Rican who played Major League Baseball (MLB) for the San Diego Padres, Toronto Blue Jays, Baltimore Orioles, Cleveland Indians, New York Mets, Chicago White Sox, and Arizona Diamondbacks (1988–2004). Alomar was one of the best all-around players ever. He was great offensively and defensively. In his 17-year career, he had a .300 average, 210 home runs, 1134 RBI, 1508 runs scored, 2724 base hits, and 474 stolen bases. He was selected to the All-Star team twelve times, starting at second for nine of them.

As a defensive second baseman, he holds the record for having earned the most Gold Glove Awards throughout the ’90s and the 2000s. As well as winning Silver Slugger Awards four times, he was known for his attitude issues, once spitting on an umpire. The Blue Jays won two World Series titles under his leadership.

#3. Ryne Sandberg

Ryne Sandberg

Ryne Sandberg #23 of the Chicago Cubs batting during Game 2 of the 1984 National League Championship Series against the San Diego Padres on October 3, 1984 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Ronald C. Modra/Getty Images)

Ryne Dee Sandberg was born on September 18, 1959. Ryno is his nickname. He played, coached, and managed baseball professionally while in the United States. A second baseman in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago Cubs, Parker played for 16 seasons (1981-1994, 1996-1997). Furthermore, Sandberg was an outstanding second baseman on both offense and defense. Playing the game, he hit .285, scored 1318 runs, and had 2386 hits. Nine times he has begun at second base on the All-Star team throughout his career.

His nine Gold Gloves at second base made him one of the best defensive second basemen in baseball history. He won seven Silver Slugger Awards and was named the National League MVP in 1984.

#2. Rogers Hornsby

Rogers Hornsby

Rogers Hornsby, star second baseman of the St. Louis Cardinals and batting king of the National League. Getty Images

Rogers Hornsby was born on April 27, 1896 and died on January 5, 1963. “The Rajah” was his nickname. During his 23 years in Major League Baseball (MLB), he played infield, managed, and coached. He was voted the National League (NL) ‘s Most Valuable Player (MVP) twice, and he played on one World Series championship team. Hornsby is one of baseball’s greatest hitters. He won the batting title seven times, nine times he won the on-base percentage title, and nine times he won the slugging percentage title. He also won two triple crowns in the 1922 and 1925 seasons.

During the 1925 and 1929 seasons, he received two MVP awards. With 39 home runs, 143 RBI, and 133 runs scored, his best season was in 1925, when he averaged .403. In three seasons, he had an average of .400 or better.

#1. Joe Morgan

Joe Morgan

Second baseman Joe Morgan #8 of the Houston Astros swings and watches the flight of his ball circa late 1960’s during a Major League Baseball game. Morgan played for the Houston Colt .45’s/ Astros from 1963-71 and 1980. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)

Joe Leonard Morgan (September 19, 1943 – October 11, 2020) was a former second baseman for the Houston Astros, Cincinnati Reds, San Francisco Giants, Philadelphia Phillies, and Oakland Athletics in Major League Baseball. He played from 1963 to 1984. Morgan’s Reds teams won two World Series championships in 1975 and 1976, and he was also named the MVP each year.  

Morgan was outstanding both on offense and defense. It’s estimated he scored 1650 runs, had 2517 base hits, and stole 689 bases during his 22 years as a professional. All-Star selections included seven starts at second on his All-Star teams. He also won five consecutive Gold Gloves for his defensive play in the mid-1970s, which is one of the best in the history of baseball. In addition to his qualities as a leader and a winner, he steered his teams to the World Series four times and won two of them.

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