Cleat Geeks

Stealing “The Show”

If you are into fantasy baseball and you need a little help as you are adding up your total points, you may be surprised by how much stolen bases and hitters who get them can add to your team. Normally, hitters who get stolen bases also get hits or walks to be on base, and score often so you also get runs. Here are a few players who people in your fantasy league may not know about. All stats are as of Saturday June 27th.

The team with the most steals in “the show” are the Cincinnati Reds. Overall the team has 75 stolen bases and as expected, Billy Hamilton leads the team with 36. Over the past 2 seasons combined, 2nd baseman Brandon Phillips has stole 7 bases. So far this season he is already up to 11 in 12 attempts.ender-inciarte

Last year the Arizona Diamondbacks were struggling in many areas. This year they are improving in many areas and stolen bases are one of their biggest improvements as a team. Under 1st year manager Chip Hale the Diamondbacks have ran themselves into 2nd place in MLB in steals which is a drastic improvement from 18th last year. Current Dbacks outfielder Ender Inciarte is currently on the 15 DL but is expected to be back soon. He currently has 9 stolen bases, and 20 seems reasonable for the season.

The 3rd place team in MLB are the Houston Astros. Much like Hamilton for the Reds, we all know about Jose Altuve and his 21 stolen bases. But recent call-up Carlos Correa should also be a good source for stolen bases. In his time in the minors this year he had 18 stolen bases and so far in “the show” he has 4 stolen bases in only 20 games and his .314 average is a nice bonus.joseiglesias

The team in 4th place may surprise you a little, the Detriot Tigers. They are paced by outfielders Rajai Davis and Anthony Gose, but they also have a surprise contributor in Jose Iglesias. In 2013 in 382 at-bats Iglesias stole 5 bases in 7 attempts. This year in only 215 plate appearances he is 9-for-14, and he has a .323 batting average to boot.

MILWAUKEE, WI - AUGUST 8: Anthony Rizzo #44 of the Chicago Cubs is greated by Dexter Fowler #24 and other teammates after hitting a solo home run off of Jimmy Nelson #52 of the Milwaukee Brewers in the fourth inning at Miller Park on May 8, 2015 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  (Photo by Tom Lynn/Getty Images)

If a team jumps from 24th to 9th from 1 year to the next in stolen bases, I would call that a significant positive jump. That is the story of the 2015 Chicago Cubs. Anthony Rizzo continues to improve and impress as he has already set a career high in stolen bases this season with 11. They are also making the jump with a player who was not on their roster in 2014 and has not reached the 20 stolen base mark since 2009. Dexter Fowler is more than halfway there with 11 as well so far this season.

Our final stop, just like the Cubs, Astros, and Diamondbacks also has a 1st year manager. Under new manager Kevin Cash the Tampa Bay Rays have improved 20 spots in the stolen base department from 26th to being tied for 6th. Kevin Kiermaier has contributed to this improvement. Last year, as a rookie, he actually had more home runs (10) than stolen bases (5). This year he already has 8 this season.

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