Top 10 Active MLB Triples Leaders

To hit home runs and doubles usually requires power, but to hit triples requires a bit of power and a lot of speed. Or sometimes, luck, such as when an outfielder misjudges a ball and lets an otherwise slow runner reach third. But the leaders in MLB in this category are seasoned speedsters, and have mostly done it for several years. Here is the active Top 10 in triples, including only players on active rosters in 2009:

1. Johnny Damon, New York Yankees (93)—At age 35 and having battled injuries throughout his career, Damon has lost a step or two. But between 1998 and 2002, this sparkplug reached double digits in triples three times.

2. Jimmy Rollins, Philadelphia Phillies (90)—Rollins is the heart and soul of the Phillies, and is one of the reasons they won a title in 2008. He’s only 30, but has reached double figures in triples five times, including a career high 20 in 2007.

3. Carl Crawford, Tampa Bay Rays (85)—Crawford is a game-changer, and in his still young career has averaged 15 triples and 53 stolen bases per season.

4. Cristian Guzman, Washington Nationals (78)—Still a very good hitter, but Guzman isn’t the triples or stolen base threat he was in his earlier days with Minnesota. His career high, like Rollins, was also 20 triples, set in 2000 with the Twins.

5. Jose Reyes, New York Mets (73)—Arguably one of the two or three fastest players in the game, Jose has averaged 16 triples and 65 steals over the last four seasons. So how in the world do the Mets not score more runs?

6. Omar Vizquel, Texas Rangers (72)—This one is more about longevity, but Omar did have a career best 10 triples with the Giants in 2006, at the ripe old baseball age of 39.

7. Juan Pierre, Los Angeles Dodgers (71)—Ol’ Juan has slowed down just a bit too, but he’s hit double digits in triples four times during his career, including three straight times from 2004-2006.

8. Carlos Beltran, New York Mets (64)—Does anyone remember that Carlos Beltran played seven seasons in Kansas City? I mean, did he really?

8. Ichiro Suzuki, Seattle Mariners (64)—Ichiro bats for average and steals more bases than he does hit extra base hits. But he’s averaged 8 triples per season during his American big league career.

10. Derek Jeter, New York Yankees (57)—Jeter is just a true professional and great baseball player, but his career high in triples, 9, came ten seasons ago.

Source: Baseball Reference

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2009 MLB Preview: #29 Washington Nationals

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Offseason Movement: Perhaps the Nats’ biggest addition was 1B/OF Adam Dunn, who will add some pop to the lineup, as well as a fair amount of strikeouts. Washington also acquired OF Josh Willingham and LHP Scott Olsen in a trade with the Marlins and signed free agents Daniel Cabrera, Alex Cintron and Javier Valentin. In the deal to land Willingham and Olsen, the Nationals agreed to send 2B Emilio Bonifaci, INF Jake Smolinski and RHP P.J. Dean to Florida.

Top Prospect: Jordan Zimmerman, RHP
Zimmermann is a serious Rookie of the Year candidate and is turning in a fantastic spring. As of this writing, he has allowed only six hits, two walks and has struck out 16 batters over 12 1/3 scoreless innings. He seems to be over shadowed on a national level, but that’s mostly because the Nationals have yet to officially hand him a spot in the starting rotation. But that should change soon and as long as he doesn’t let the bright lights of the Big Leagues eat him alive, the 22-year old could be a future star.

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