Willson Contreras Leads MLB in "Good Baserunning Plays" This Year! ... Also "Bad Baserunning Plays"

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Willson Contreras Leads MLB in “Good Baserunning Plays” This Year! … Also “Bad Baserunning Plays”

Chicago Cubs

You could’ve given me 100 guesses and I never would’ve come up with the leader in “Good Baserunning Plays” this year, a stat developed and tracked by Sports Info Solutions. The stat is much like it sounds: just tracking how many times a baserunner does the kind of thing that a player normally doesn’t do successfully – taking an extra base when it seems an average player would not, avoiding a tag on a would-be-out, keeping a play alive long enough for something good to happen, etc. There’s a little bit of art to it, but I appreciate the attempt to quantify this kind of thing.

So anyway, like I said, if you told me the leader was a Cub, I obviously would’ve said, oh, well it’s Javy Báez. But no! He *IS* the leader since 2019 with 16 “Good Baserunning Plays,” but he’s not the leader this year.

In hindsight, though, I should’ve realized who the leader might be, because he actually does pull off great things on the bases all the time – it’s Willson Contreras:

Contreras, who has decent speed and good athleticism, has pulled off some great baserunning plays this year, without question. He is exceptionally aggressive, too, which puts him in a spot to complete some impressive plays.

Now, if you paid attention at all this year, you know the caveat: Contreras not only leads baseball with seven “Good Baserunning Plays,” he’s also tied for the lead in baseball with six “Bad Baserunning Plays.” I mean, if you told me Contreras would extreme in both examples, I definitely would’ve bought that, because we joke about it watching games all the time. It’s just that, it turns out, he’s the MOST extreme in both directions!

Remember Báez’s absolutely absurd play to “steal” first base? Well Contreras deservedly got credit for a Good Baserunning Play of his own, having managed to score in that situation.

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Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.