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Baseball Trivia (General)/fastest player from home to first alltime?


Paul S wrote at 2006-06-19 11:42:49
Mantle was to first base in 3.1 seconds from the left side.  I don't know if that is the fastest, however, Stengel seemed to think so.

bud wrote at 2007-05-22 15:31:04
There is some record of how fast guys get from home to first, since teams are interested in this type of data. A young Mickey Mantle is supposed to have the fastest time ever at 3.1 seconds. Current KC Royals farm hand Joey Gathright has done it as quickly as 3.3.

Some Internet sources put Ichiro's home-to-first time a 3.6 seconds. There have been many players with quicker times than that.  

nynyusa wrote at 2007-09-24 14:15:35

I remember an article on "baseball digest" a bout 20 years ago. At that time it listed the top 3 fastest players from home to first of all time. If my memory doesn't fail me, the order was as follows: Bo Jackson, Mickey Mantle and Miguel Dilone.

They also wrote about the advantage of left handed hitters as opposed to right handed hitters because of the few feet difference in distance to first base.

It would be nice to get a copy of that issue of Baseball Digest in order to read the full article.

The Hammer wrote at 2008-02-23 12:26:40
I've read that Mickey Mantle had been officially timed at 3.1 seconds to first base. I also read  that he was unofficially timed at 2.9 seconds to first base.  Vince Coleman of the St. Louis Cardinals was purportedly timed at 3.0 seconds, and I think Vada Pinson of the Cincinnati Reds may have been timed at 3.1 seconds.  I can't remember reading about anybody else with better timed sprints to first base.  I also read that Cool Papa Bell circled the bases in 12 flat!  That's 120 yards in 12 seconds, and that's with 90 degree turns.  If true, that fellow could really fly!

drew27 wrote at 2008-06-20 15:02:42
Actually the fastest player from home to first was Miguel Dilone, followed closely by Mickey Mantle.

e28p wrote at 2008-08-15 05:39:51
fastest all-time? Vada Pinson.  Consistently timed early in his career at 3.1 seconds home to first.

BBwriter wrote at 2009-05-18 18:17:26
I agree with some in this forum. Baseball Digest had written an article stating that Bo Jackson, Mickey Mantle and Miguel Dilone had the all time fastest times from home to first. While with the Cubs, Dilone was a fix at 3.15 batting left handed and 3.2 right handed from home to first. During Dilone's best years with Cleveland he had a couple of bunt doubles!

Unlike Bo Jackson and Mantle, Dilone had no HR power, however he was not a weak hitter at all. He could spray line drives all over the field. During the end of his career, Dilone raced a young Juan Samuel and Vince Coleman in a winter league all star game. Dilone won by a hair while Samuel and Coleman finished tied in second!  

Joey wrote at 2010-05-10 18:38:44
ichiro is fast but definetly not the fastest to first, especially all time. I dont know who is but i know ichiro was clocked at 3.7 seconds to first base and mickey mantle was clocked at 3.1 seconds to first.  

iwasthere wrote at 2010-08-27 12:14:24
Geoff-hi-the measurement was accurate--I have seen them all and Mickey Mantle was the fastest ever! He could literally outrun a drag bunt to first and I can not remember a time where Mantle bunted and was thrown out at first. It was just such a letdown to fans who had come to see a ball launched into orbit that Mickey usually refrained from such antics. He could have gotten a hit almost whenever he wanted. I don't think any other player, past or present, could make that claim.

mike wrote at 2010-11-04 16:33:57
There is no reason a stopwatch would record different today vs. 50 years ago. Casey was amazed by Mantle's speed and had different players run and were timed.Mantle was recorded at 3.1 and Casey said he went from home to home consistently in under 13.0 seconds.I have no reason not to believe that. New and modern isn't always better.

TM wrote at 2011-05-31 20:46:34
Ichiro does get more infield hits but there is a reason for it.  His style of hitting (linear) is pretty much custom made for a left handed, singles hitting, speedster.  That's not Crawford.  He's rotational, which means off the back leg (vs front) and there's your 2/10's of a second from home to first.

Scales27 wrote at 2013-01-12 22:18:12
I have been googling fastest players quite a bit - now admittedly I'm a die hard met fan and 33 yrs old - I am upset that moooooookie Wilson has been mentioned very rarely if at all on most sites - I thought he was at least comparable to Vince Coleman ? Am I way off guys? Looki g through my met goggles

Brad wrote at 2014-06-09 23:43:56
I've read numerous articles about this topic.  Censuses is that from the left side of the plate it is Mickey Mantle.  From the right side of the plate it is Bo Jackson.  On a side note, Bo Jackson recorded the fastest 40 time at the NFL combines at 4.12

Boomer wrote at 2014-08-13 17:45:33
My grandpa was very good friends with Gil McDougald, who played for the Yankees back in the day, and he said he asked Casey Stengal this question once, and Casey responded with something along the lines of "I played againt the some of the best, and I coached some of the best. The man who could hit the ball the farthest, Babe Ruth. The man who could run the bases with the most furosity and authority, Ty Cobb. The man who could do them both, Mickey Mantle." Now, I'm not saying this for a fact, because we really don't know, but Ty Cobb must have been Very fast if Stengal said he ran the bases as fast, if not faster than Mickey.

Just a thought.

Jack wrote at 2015-06-21 23:32:19
I'm surprised no one mentioned Willie Davis of the '60s Dodgers. Another player who was incredibly fast to first base was Ken Griffey Sr.  When he first came up with the Reds, he had a season where he had a very large number of infield hits.  And, of course, in 2014 Billy Hamilton of the Reds came into the league.  In terms of guys who had great overall speed, there is Neon Deion Sanders.   BTW, I doubt Mickey Mantle ran a 3.1 to first.  If he was clocked at that speed, then you can rest assured it was due to inaccuracies in the clocking.  

Mike J. wrote at 2015-07-15 03:33:29
Mantle was the fastest , Im from a baseball family , and lived in the Midwest , so not a New Yorker, I saw Mickey Mantle play 100's of games over the years in the fifties and sixties, he was strong and fast, and just flat out flew to first, I even bought a stop watch just to time him from the stands, and I'm telling you it was amazing and his times were always 3.0 to 3.3 and he always hustled, in fact after he hit a home run he would be around the bases in 14 -15 seconds, faster than most players could do it trying, no showboating by him, not like many of these recent "players", word at that time was he was the fastest , I've never seen anyone do it quicker. In addition I've never seen anyone hit a baseball as hard as he did, " no one" . It's to bad he had that injury early in his career , and didn't take care of himself better, he was the best raw talent I've ever seen play the game. Also check with the 2nd basemen and SS  of his time and see have much fun it was having Mantle barreling down on you at second base on a double play,  not fun. Thank you letting me share these memories about The "Mick".

Steven Renda wrote at 2016-05-02 01:26:48
Without a doubt, Mickey Mantle had, the greatest speed and power the game has ever seen, even to this day. He was timed on numerous occasions from first to second, batting left-hand, at  3.0 seconds, and right-handed at 3.1 seconds; and that was after his major knee injury in 1951, stepping on a drain grate in Center field, when, with blinding speed, he pulled up suddenly from right field as Joe DiMaggio called for the ball hit by non other than rookie Willie Mays in the World Series. Before that, he was even faster. Mantle has hit more baseballs constantly further and faster than any slugger ever has. Brooks Robinson, the great Oriole third basement was quoted. "Mickey once hit a ball so fast that it just grazed the hair on my head before I could even react to it, and the instant I turned around, the ball was already into the left field stands. He has hit more balls completely out of more stadiums than anyone who ever lived. In the World Series, hitting against Sandy Koufax, Mantle timed a blazing fast ball that disappeared into the blue sky completely out of Dodger Stadium, and was never found. His 18 World Series homeruns will never be broken. The Babe is second, with 15.  

jaymac wrote at 2016-07-21 16:23:43
I thought that Julian Javiar was clocked at 3.3  or better back in the 60s.  

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