The 2000s were a thrilling decade for baseball fans, and second base saw some incredible talents emerge and leave their mark on the game. In this article, we’ll take a journey through the top 10 second basemen from the 2000s. These players showcased their skills, left lasting legacies, and made their positions on the field something truly special. Let’s dive into the world of power, finesse, and baseball magic.
Top 10 Second Basemen from the 2000s
Here’s a list of top 10 second basemen from the 2000s, based on a combination of their offensive and defensive contributions, as well as their overall impact on the game during that decade:
- Jeff Kent – Known for his power-hitting, Kent was a consistent offensive force at second base and won the National League MVP in 2000.
- Roberto Alomar – A smooth fielder with a great batting eye, Alomar was an all-around player who excelled in all aspects of the game.
- Chase Utley – Emerging in the mid-2000s, Utley combined power, batting average, and excellent fielding to become one of the premier second basemen.
- Craig Biggio – A versatile player who converted from catcher to second baseman, Biggio notched his 3,000th hit in 2007 and was known for his durability and leadership.
- Robinson Canó – Debuting in 2005, Canó quickly became known for his smooth swing and ability to hit for both average and power.
- Alfonso Soriano – Initially making his mark as a second baseman, Soriano was known for his combination of speed and power, though he later transitioned to the outfield.
- Ian Kinsler – Kinsler had a breakout season in 2008 and was one of the better power-speed threats at second base.
- Brian Roberts – A switch-hitter with speed, Roberts was a doubles machine and a consistent leadoff hitter.
- Plácido Polanco – Known for his exceptional contact hitting and defensive skills, Polanco was a model of consistency.
- Ray Durham – A solid performer who provided both speed and power, Durham was an important part of the lineups he was in.
Let’s dive a little more into the details of each of these great players.
1. Jeff Kent
Jeff Kent, a prominent figure in the early 2000s, is best remembered for his powerhouse performance. His reputation as a power-hitting second baseman made him a consistent offensive force.
Notably, in 2000, he achieved the pinnacle of his career by winning the National League MVP award. Kent’s ability to drive in runs and provide a significant boost to his team’s lineup set him apart as a standout player of his era. His remarkable contributions at the plate and on the field solidified his legacy as one of the premier second basemen of the 2000s.
2. Roberto Alomar
Roberto Alomar was a true maestro on the baseball field during the 2000s. Renowned for his exceptional fielding skills and a keen batting eye, Alomar was a complete player who excelled in all aspects of the game.
His elegance in the field and ability to make acrobatic plays set a high standard for second basemen across the league. At the plate, his consistency and ability to contribute in various offensive categories made him an invaluable asset to every team he played for. Alomar’s legacy as an all-around player left a significant and lasting impact on the world of baseball.
3. Chase Utley
Chase Utley emerged as a rising star in the mid-2000s, quickly garnering recognition as one of the most promising talents in the league. What set Utley apart was his ability to seamlessly blend power, a high batting average, and exceptional fielding. He epitomized the evolving role of a second baseman, not only as an offensive threat but also as a stellar defender.
Utley’s arrival marked a new era for the second base position, where versatility and dynamism became the norm. His impact on the game was undeniable, making him one of the premier second basemen of his generation and leaving a lasting imprint on the sport.
4. Craig Biggio
Craig Biggio, a versatile player who made a transition from catcher to second baseman, is a name etched in the annals of baseball history. His career reached a significant milestone in 2007 when he notched his 3,000th hit, a testament to his longevity and consistent performance.
Biggio’s versatility and leadership on and off the field made him a pivotal figure for his team. His transition between positions showcased his adaptability, and his remarkable durability as a player left an indelible mark on the game. He was not just a versatile leader but a symbol of excellence in baseball.
5. Robinson Canó
Debuting on the baseball scene in 2005, Robinson Canó quickly captivated fans and fellow players alike with his elegant and smooth swing. Known for his ability to hit for both average and power, Canó’s consistency at the plate set him apart as a remarkable talent.
His stylish approach to the game and his knack for making hitting seem effortless made him a standout among his peers. Canó’s impact on the field was undeniable, and he swiftly established himself as one of the premier second basemen of his era.
6. Alfonso Soriano
Alfonso Soriano initially made his mark as a second baseman and was celebrated for his rare combination of speed and power. His ability to swipe bases and deliver powerful hits made him a dynamic presence on the field.
Later in his career, Soriano transitioned to the outfield, where his dynamic playing style continued to shine. His adaptability and versatility as a player allowed him to remain a force to be reckoned with, regardless of his position. Soriano’s contributions to the game, both as a second baseman and an outfielder, highlighted his enduring impact on the sport.
7. Ian Kinsler
Ian Kinsler had a breakout season in 2008, and it marked the beginning of his ascent as one of the better power-speed threats at second base. Kinsler’s versatility in the field and his ability to impact games in various ways made him a valuable asset to his team.
Whether it was making a crucial play in the field, stealing bases, or delivering a powerful hit, Kinsler was a well-rounded player. His power-speed combination provided an extra dimension to his team’s gameplay. Kinsler’s breakout year was just the start of his journey as a significant player in the world of baseball.
8. Brian Roberts
Brian Roberts was a switch-hitting dynamo who brought a unique blend of skills to the baseball diamond. As a switch-hitter, he could effectively bat from both sides of the plate, creating challenges for opposing pitchers. Roberts was not only versatile but also had remarkable speed that made him a threat on the basepaths. He was a doubles machine, consistently finding the gaps and stretching singles into two-baggers.
His role as a leadoff hitter was crucial in setting the table for his team’s offense. Roberts’ ability to get on base, combined with his speed, made him a catalyst for run-scoring opportunities. His dynamic approach to the game and his ability to impact both sides of the plate solidified his reputation as a switch-hitting dynamo.
9. Plácido Polanco
Plácido Polanco was celebrated as a contact hitting virtuoso during his time on the baseball field. His exceptional ability to make contact with the ball set him apart as a unique and valuable player. Polanco’s bat-to-ball skills were unrivaled, and he consistently found ways to put the ball in play, making him a formidable offensive presence.
Not only was he a marvel with the bat, but Polanco also possessed superb defensive skills, making him a complete player. His glove work in the field was nothing short of exceptional, and he set high standards for his peers. Polanco’s consistency in both contact hitting and defensive prowess made him a model of excellence in the world of baseball.
10. Ray Durham
Ray Durham was the perfect fusion of speed and power on the baseball field. As a solid performer, he showcased the rare ability to provide both elements to his team. Durham’s speed made him a threat on the basepaths, where he could steal bases and stretch singles into extra-base hits. His power, on the other hand, added a dynamic element to his offensive game.
Durham’s ability to both hit for power and steal bases made him an important asset in the lineups he played in. His dynamic skill set allowed him to contribute in various ways, whether it was driving in runs or igniting rallies with his speed. Durham’s unique combination of attributes made him an essential and versatile player for his teams.
The 2000s were a golden era for second basemen in baseball. Each player on this list brought something unique to the position, whether it was power, finesse, speed, or all-around excellence. Their contributions to the game will be remembered for generations to come.