Phillies players among the fastest in Major League Baseball

Roman Quinn #24 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Roman Quinn #24 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /

The Phillies have some of the fastest players in Major League Baseball

When you think about Philadelphia Phillies baseball, you first remember the good days from the 1980 and 2008 World Series championship teams. Then, you think about all of the players who slugged home runs — the Mike Schmidts, the Jim Thomes, the Ryan Howards. Third, you might think about some of the franchise’s all-time dominant pitchers — Steve Carlton and Roy Halladay, to name a few.

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Way down on the list, probably near last, you think about the Phillies players’ speed out the baseball diamond. Perhaps, this should come to mind much sooner. According to Daren Willman, MLB Director of Baseball Research and Development, the Phillies have three players with the fastest sprint speed in Major League Baseball for their respective positions so far in the 2020 season — J.T. Realmuto (catcher), Scott Kingery (second base) and Roman Quinn (center field).

2020 Sprint Speed Leaders by Position, entering August 17

  • C: J.T. Realmuto, Philadelphia Phillies — 28.0 feet per second
  • 1B: Jake Cronenworth, San Diego Padres — 28.5 feet per second
  • 2B: Scott Kingery, Philadelphia Phillies — 28.8 feet per second
  • 3B: Tommy Edman, St. Louis Cardinals — 29.2 feet per second
  • SS: Trea Turner, Washington Nationals — 29.8 feet per second
  • LF: Dee Gordon, Seattle Mariners — 28.6 feet per second
  • CF: Roman Quinn, Philadelphia Phillies — 30.5 feet per second
  • RF: Adam Engel, Chicago White Sox — 29.9 feet per second
  • DH: Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels — 28.6 feet per second

Quinn’s 30.5 feet per second sprint speed ranks as the best in Major League Baseball; his average is considered a “bolt,” as it is at or greater to 30 feet per second.

Last season, Quinn — who was recently placed on the COVID-19 Injured List — finished with the second-fastest sprint speed among center fielders at 30.1 feet per second, trailing only Byron Buxton of the Minnesota Twins (30.3 feet per second). Realmuto (28.7 feet per second) also finished in second, coincidentally behind the player he was traded for — Jorge Alfaro (28.8 feet per second).

Kingery has notably since shifted to a utility player role upon the call up of Alec Bohm and Jean Segura moving over to second base. With Adam Haseley and Quinn both currently out, Kingery will see most of his playing time in the coming days at center field. For now, his 28.8 feet per second sprint speed still ranks as the fastest among second baseman in MLB — even with him recovering from COVID-19.

About Sprint Speed

The sprint speed statistic is now its fourth season of existence. The Statcast metric is used to “more precisely quantify speed by measuring how many feet per second a player runs in his fastest one-second window” on individual plays, according to

Baseball Savant notes that the above listed figures incorporate the following two types of plays, the best of which are averaged to determine overall seasonal average:

  • Runs of two bases or more on non-homers, excluding being a runner on second base when an extra base hit happens
  • Home to first on topped or weakly hit balls.

Phillies Player Competitive Runs Leaders

The MLB competitive run average sprint speed is 27 feet per second; it has an approximate range from 23 feet per second (poor) to 30 feet per second (elite).

  • J.T. Realmuto, 26 competitive runs (0 bolts or runs 30 feet per second or faster)
  • Jean Segura, 23 (0)
  • Didi Gregorius, 20 (0)
  • Bryce Harper, 18 (0)
  • Jay Bruce, 14 (0)
  • Andrew McCutchen, 14 (0)
  • Scott Kingery, 14 (0)
  • Rhys Hoskins, 13 (0)
  • Roman Quinn, 13 (11, 3rd in MLB)
  • Adam Haseley, 11 (0)
  • Phil Gosselin, 10 (0)

Harper (3), Gregorius (1), Quinn (1), and Segura (1) have stolen bases so far this season, combining to be caught stealing just once.

As the Ithaca Times’ Matt Butler puts it, the Phillies are more like the “Phasties.”