10 greatest utility players in MLB history


Ben Zobrist
Arturo Pardavila III from Hoboken, NJ, United states of america, CC BY 2. , by way of Wikimedia Commons

There may well be no team of players extra disregarded in baseball historical past than the very best MLB utility gamers of all time.

These are some of the most versatile MLB gamers to at any time enjoy the game. Even if they weren’t bonafide superstars, the best utility gamers in baseball heritage deserve credit history due to the fact they ended up very good at so several distinctive issues and contributed to their teams in so several techniques. Moreover, a ton of the most functional baseball players in MLB historical past often found themselves on winning teams, which was no coincidence.

Best MLB utility players of all time

Of course, considering the fact that they weren’t star gamers, it’s not generally uncomplicated to recall the greatest MLB utility players of all time. But really do not worry about that for the reason that we’ve finished the historical leg perform for you.

Whether or not you concur with or record or not is a further concern. On the other hand, we have compiled a ranking of the leading-10 greatest utility players in baseball record.

10. Rance Mulliniks

Rance Mulliniks may well not be a household title nowadays but all through his vocation, he was just one of the best utility infielders in the video game. He came up as a shortstop but learned to engage in 3rd base and began shifting all over the infield.

He was a correct rover and ended up actively playing 16 seasons in the significant leagues, primarily with the Blue Jays. For his vocation, Mulliniks strike .272 with 435 RBIs regardless of not hitting for substantially electricity. As an alternative, he created his residing by staying functional.

9. Mariano Duncan

Mariano Duncan is mainly remembered as a shortstop and a next baseman and was even an all-star in 1994. But throughout his profession, he found his way all in excess of the diamond, starting off at minimum one particular sport at just about every place other than pitcher and catcher.

While he was hardly ever regarded as a power hitter or a fantastic offensive talent, Duncan was a slick fielder no issue wherever you place him. It is why he played 13 seasons in the majors and served his staff acquire a Entire world Sequence two times.

8. Chone Figgins

He didn’t have a lot electric power but Chone Figgins could hit for a high common and subject his situation, regardless of what posture he performed. He performed principally at third foundation, although he expended a large amount of time at second base and in center subject.

Figgins ended up enjoying everywhere but initial base, pitcher, and catcher. Exterior of his defensive flexibility, Figgins brought a ton to the table. He was a profession .276 hitter and stole 341 bases above his 12 seasons in the majors. He was also an all-star in 2009 and the MLB stolen base leader in 2005, helping to earn him recognition as one of the greatest MLB utility players in baseball background.

7. Tony Phillips

Tony Phillips played 18 seasons all through the 1980s and 90s and was a single of the best MLB utility players of all time despite actively playing in an period right before utility gamers received substantially awareness or respect. He came up as a second baseman, which was his major situation.

But Phillips experienced no issue playing shortstop or third foundation and built around 100 appearances in the outfield. Even even though he was never ever an all-star, Phillips was a career .266 hitter and constantly contributed sufficient to stick all-around the league, enjoying 18 seasons for 7 various groups.

6. Matt Carpenter

Through his 11 seasons with the Cardinals, Matt Carpenter was consistently shifting all-around concerning initial base, 2nd base, and 3rd foundation, despite the fact that the sizzling corner was his principal posture. For the duration of his prime yrs, Carpenter was a flexible utility player who strike like an day-to-day 3rd baseman. From 2012 to 2018, he was an extraordinary offensive player, profitable the Silver Slugger Award in 2013 and staying named an all-star a few times.

Even when his offensive output dropped, Carpenter was nonetheless important for the reason that of his versatility, even taking part in the outfield and showing as a pitcher in 2021.

5. Martin Prado

Most take into consideration Martin Prado a third baseman, but he was actually a correct utility participant. By the finish of his occupation, he had performed just about every situation besides for pitcher, catcher, and center discipline. By the late levels of his career, Prado could move seamlessly among third base, 2nd foundation, and remaining subject, which is what aided him increase his career for 14 many years.

The Venezuela indigenous was also a wonderful hitter, producing the All-Star Staff in 2010 and ending his profession with 100 house runs and a .287 batting regular.

4. Chris Taylor

The expression super-utility participant was surely established for players like Chris Taylor. Even right before his occupation is even over, he’s 1 of the best MLB utility players of all time. From the start off of his job, Taylor has done a good job of embracing the position of a utility player.

He’s also superior sufficient defensively to participate in all 3 outfield positions, which includes heart field, 3rd base, shortstop, and 2nd base. In actuality, he’s expended most of his vocation at both shortstop or in center subject, which is why he’s so useful. Offensively, Taylor has normally been a constant hitter and not concerned of the significant stage, earning NLCS MVP honors in 2017.

3. Jose Oquendo

Although Jose Oquendo invested a small time as the middle-infield spouse to the terrific Ozzie Smith, he’s greatest recognised for his remarkable versatility as one of the finest utility gamers in baseball record. It assisted Oquendo that he was a brilliant defensive next baseman and a sturdy defensive shortstop. He really has the 2nd-very best profession fielding share between next basemen.

But no matter where by you place him, Oquendo was fantastic with the glove. He even put in a little time driving the plate and appeared as a pitcher, generating him a single of the exceptional players in large league heritage to engage in all nine positions. Granted, Oquendo was generally recognised for his glove and flexibility, he batted .256 for his job, accomplishing just adequate offensively to show himself handy.

2. Placido Polanco

Placido Polanco unquestionably deserves to be viewed as among the finest MLB utility gamers of all time. Of program, if we’re becoming truthful, he was also just one of the most underrated next basemen of his era. He was a two-time all-star and took property ALCS MVP honors in 2006, as nicely as a Silver Slugger Award in 2007.

For his profession, Polanco batted .297 and racked up about 2,100 hits. But in addition to getting a great second baseman, Polanco was also an attained third baseman who could also take care of himself at shortstop.

In fact, he is one particular of two gamers to gain a Gold Glove at numerous positions, successful twice at next base and after at 3rd foundation. On top of that, Polanco retired with the very best all-time fielding percentage at each next base and 3rd base. Wherever he played, he could take care of himself in addition to remaining ready to manage the bat as perfectly.

1. Ben Zobrist

Whilst his profession only ended in 2019, Ben Zobrist will possible be remembered as a single of the most flexible gamers in baseball history. Even even though he was generally a next baseman, all of his administrators had no dilemma transferring him about the diamond.

He observed loads of time in the outfield and could even manage himself at shortstop, earning him the title of tremendous-utility player. Zobrist was also a change-hitter and one of the most affected person hitters of his era.

Not like most utility gamers, Zobrist built plenty of of an affect to be a a few-time all-star. It is also no coincidence that he gained the Earth Series in again-to-again decades with two distinctive teams late in his vocation. He was a versatile participant and always performed winning baseball.


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Anna C. Knight

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