Stealing Heaven

This would be a good week to start Brett Gardner and add a few stolen bases to your team's totals.
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Carl Crawford tied a modern-day record with six stolen bases in one game on Sunday, a great feat, which likely put his fantasy owners at the top of the SB category. But it got me thinking, could I add extra steals if I knew which catchers and teams were the weakest at throwing out base runners?

Here is the research.

Stealing bases is not just against the catcher, so don't completely blame A.J. Pierzynski, Gregg Zaun and Jason Varitek (league-leading 26 SB allowed) for the bad defensive totals. But the result of pitchers not holding the runners on and mediocre arms from the catcher is a deadly combination.

What the numbers show is that if you have a base stealers, even borderline starters, coming into a series against the White Sox, Baltimore, San Diego or Boston, they should definitely be in your lineup.

For the week beginning today, base stealers on Tampa Bay should be in your lineup because they get to face both Boston and Baltimore this week. The Yankees also play those same two teams, so it might be the perfect time to get Brett Gardner (five steals) a few starts.

By contrast, the Texas Rangers and St. Louis Cardinals are the toughest teams to run on - both in opportunities and results.

Nyjer Morgan of the Pirates (six steals), faces a tougher task than Gardner this week going up against the Cardinals (50% caught stealing) and the Mets who are throwing out runners at a 40% clip in five of seven games.

Stolen Bases Allowed by Team
RankTeamGMSBCSCS%
1)CHW242414%
2)BAL2527413%
3)CLE2513213%
4)SD2527413%
5)KC2518314%
6)BOS2534819%
7)FLA2522519%
8)MIL2515421%
9)MIN2526721%
10)WAS2314422%
11)TOR2719624%
12)TB2618625%
13)SEA2514630%
14)DET2411531%
15)ARI2513632%
16)CHC2413632%
17)SF2313632%
18)LAD2613632%
19)COL2316833%
20)LAA2318933%
21)PIT2411635%
22)NYY24241437%
23)HOU258538%
24)NYM239640%
25)OAK229640%
26)PHI229640%
27)ATL2410741%
28)CIN24131043%
29)TEX245444%
30)STL255550%


Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Steve Schwarz at sschwarz@sportsnetwork.com.