A stolen base (abbreviated to SB) occurs when a runner advances safely to a base they are not entitled to as a result of the runner's own actions. The ball does not have to be in play, and often a stolen base occurs when a pitcher is in the process of pitching the ball, or about to pitch the ball to the batter.
Stealing a base is not merely a result of a runner being fast, but also having great instincts and base-running skills. It is often an important strategy in "smallball" style of management because, if successful, it increases the chances of bringing a runner closer to home, into "scoring position", without adding to the batting team's outs, as is the case with a sacrifice hit or fly.
A related statistic measured in baseball is the number of times a runner is caught stealing a base.
Stolen base and caught stealing records
The Bull League record for most stolen bases in a season is currently held by Dave Norman, who stole 44 bases while playing for Chicoutimi in 1999. Norman also holds the career stolen base record, at 303. The nearest active player, Xavier de Soto, has just 199.
- History Leaderboards. Bull News Network. . Accessed: 28 October 2016.