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Texas Rangers Statcast Sprint Speed Data

What does the Statcast data say about the speed of the Texas Rangers players?

MLB: Texas Rangers at Seattle Mariners Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Baseball Savant has a whole bunch of fascinating Statcast data available, if you wish to dive in and poke around. One of the things that Statcast can give us is sprint speed data for individual players — in other words, quantifiable numbers about who the fastest, and slowest, players in baseball are.

Looking at Texas Rangers players, the fastest player on the team is exactly who you would expect — Delino DeShields. DeShields is 6th in all of baseball in sprint speed, at 29.6 feet/second (which converts to 20.18 miles per hour), trailing just Byron Buxton, Billy Hamilton (yes, Hamilton is behind Buxton), Bradley Zimmer, Dee Gordon and Amed Rosario. Pretty impressive.

How does the rest of the team stack up? Well, you can see the leaderboard for the 13 Rangers with at least 10 opportunities, and compare. There is a big dropoff from DeShields to the next group, with Jared Hoying (28.2 ft/sec), Carlos Gomez (28.1) and Rougned Odor (28.0) all clumped together.

The biggest surprise on the list, though, may be at #5, where Joey Gallo checks in at 27.6 feet/second, a hair ahead of Elvis Andrus (27.5). Because Gallo is so big, people tend to underestimate his athleticism, but as Statcast shows, he’s a relatively fast guy — his sprint speed is the same as Austin Jackson, Jason Heyward and Jonathan Villar, all guys who at least have the perception of being fleet of foot, and in the 35th percentile or so for all major league players.

Also in the at least somewhat surprising category is the next group of four, which features Ryan Rua (27.0), Nomar Mazara and Shin-Soo Choo (each 26.8), and Jurickson Profar (26.7). Profar is kind of the flip side of Gallo — he’s a young, not terribly big middle infielder, and so the perception seems to be that he’s relatively fast. However, at least in 2017, he was behind Choo and Mazara, widely perceived as plodders.

Rounding out the list at 25.2 feet per second are Robinson Chirinos, Adrian Beltre and Mike Napoli — exactly the guys you’d expect to be at the bottom of this sort of list. Chirinos is a catcher, and Beltre and Napoli are old and were dealing with injury issues last year.

Interestingly, the player in MLB who is dead last in spring speed -- #451 out of #451 -- is Albert Pujols, at 23.0 feet/second. And he’s last by a good margin...Brian McCann and Juan Graterol are at 23.4 feet per second, Miguel Montero is at 23.8 feet per second, and no one else is at 24.0 or lower. In fact, there are just 23 players (including Pujols) are even below 25.0 feet per second. Pujols has truly set the bar when it comes to foot speed (or a lack thereof) among major leaguers.