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The Fastest 60-Yard Dash Times in MLB History

The 60-yard dash is a critical metric in baseball, as it helps evaluate a player’s speed and agility on the field. Speed is one of the five vital skills for baseball players, as it impacts their ability to steal bases, chase down fly balls, and turn doubles into triples. This timed sprint can provide valuable insights into the athletic potential of middle infielders, outfielders, and corner infielders alike, but a lot of people want to know – what is the fastest 60-yard dash?

Herb Washington holds the world record for the fastest 60-yard dash time at 5.8 seconds, set in 1972. Herb Washington broke the world record during his track career, but then went on to play baseball for the Oakland A’s in 1974 and 1975.

Baseball runner on 1st base watching the pitcher and preparing to run to second base

Speed is a crucial attribute that can greatly impact a player’s overall performance in the game, but a player’s 60-yard dash time is not a very well-documented statistic in baseball. In this article, we will explore the claims of the fastest 60-yard dash times in baseball, compare them to other sports, and delve into how players can improve their times to gain a competitive edge.

Four Possible Answers to the Fastest 60-Yard Dash Times in Baseball’s History

The bad news is there are no official records for the fastest 60-yard dash times. This means a lot of what you’ll read online will be speculation on who holds the record for the fastest 60-yard dash time in MLB history.

The good news is I was able to find a handful of players that the internet claims to have the fastest 60-yard dash time. Below are four possible answers to the question of what is the fastest 60-yard dash time in MLB history.

1) Herb Washington Ran a 60-Yard Dash in 5.8 Seconds

In 1972, Herb Washington ran a 60-yard dash in 5.8 seconds, setting a world record.

Because he set the world record, many claim he also holds the record for the fastest 60-yard dash time in the MLB.

The only issue with crowning Herb Washington as the fastest 60-yard dash time is that he didn’t play baseball until 1974, two years after setting his record. Herb Washington set his 60-yard dash time record during his track career. He then played baseball for the Oakland A’s in 1974 and 1975, primarily as a pinch runner.

While there are no official records of his 60-yard dash time in the MLB, chances are he didn’t maintain a 5.8-second 60-yard dash time (but he was obviously still fast).

Regardless of whether or not you want to crown Herb Washington as the fastest, there’s no doubt he should at least be in the discussion when it comes to the fastest 60-yard dash time in MLB history.

2) Carl Lewis Ran a 60-Yard Dash in 6.02 Seconds

I included Carl Lewis in this list because some sources online claim that Carl Lewis holds the MLB record for the 60-yard dash time.

I’ve seen some sources claim Carl Lewis ran the 60-yard dash in 5.98 seconds and some claim he ran it in 6.02 seconds.

There’s just one major flaw with claiming Carl Lewis holds the MLB record for the 60-yard dash time…Carl Lewis never played baseball.

If you don’t believe he never played baseball, then just watch this video of Carl Lewis throwing out a first pitch.

I think the Carl Lewis everyone refers to is the track and field star that set the record for the 60-yard dash in 1983 with 6.02 seconds.

The only Carl Lewis I could find that has any stats in baseball was one minor league catcher who died in 1942. So that can’t be the same Carl Lewis who ran a 6.02-second 60-yard dash in 1983.

3) Billy Hamilton Ran a 60-Yard Dash in 6.20 Seconds

If you’re of the opinion that Herb Washington doesn’t hold the MLB record for the best 60-yard dash time then Billy Hamilton is your next best bet.

Billy Hamilton was clocked at running a 60-yard dash in 6.2 seconds before he was drafted in 2013.

4) Mike Trout Ran a 60-Yard Dash in 6.5 Seconds

Because there are no official records kept for a player’s 60-yard dash time, there are two commonly quoted times for Mike Trout’s 60-yard dash time.

It is commonly stated that Mike Trout ran a 60-yard dash time in 6.08 seconds or 6.5 seconds.

The most commonly cited time for Mike Trout is that he ran a 60-yard dash in 6.5 seconds. But because there are some sources that state Trout ran it in 6.08 seconds, he should at least be talked about as having one of the fastest 60-yard dash times in MLB history.

What Makes a Good 60-Yard Dash Time?

To understand what constitutes a good time in the 60-yard dash in Major League Baseball, it’s essential to consider a player’s position on the field.

Middle infielders and outfielders aim for times of 6.8 seconds or lower, while corner infielders and catchers strive for times of 7.25 seconds or less. A sub-7.0 second time is generally considered above average, while times under 6.7 seconds are viewed as exceptional for most positions.

Comparing Baseball’s 60-Yard Dash to Other Sports

Football Uses a 40-Yard Dash

In football, there is a similar concept to the 60-yard dash called the 40-yard dash. The 40-yard dash measures a player’s speed and acceleration over a shorter distance.

While the 60-yard dash in baseball focuses on overall speed, the 40-yard dash in football emphasizes quickness and explosiveness. The positions that typically value straight-line speed in football include wide receivers, cornerbacks, and running backs.

In the NFL, John Ross holds the record for the fastest 40-yard dash with a time of 4.22 seconds.

We could try to use some math to figure out how fast John Ross would be in the 60-yard dash. If he’s running an average of 2.11 seconds per 20 yards, we can estimate that John Ross would have run a 60-yard dash in 6.33 seconds.

That’s not as fast as Herb Washington’s 5.8 seconds, but still pretty close!

Track and Field Uses a 60-Meter Dash

Track and field also has its own version of the 60-yard dash called the 60-meter dash.

The 60-meter event is part of indoor track competitions and requires athletes to sprint 60 meters in a straight line. The 60-meter dash is a common event in collegiate and professional track and field, showcasing the fastest sprinters in the world.

When it comes to other sports, track and field’s 60-meter dash is probably the closest in terms of distance.

When converted, 60 meters translates into 65.62 yards. So a track and field 60-meter dash is roughly 5 yards more than baseball’s 60-yard dash.

While Herb Washington holds the record for the 60-yard dash time, Christian Coleman has the world record in track and field’s 60-meter dash at 6.34 seconds.


Soccer, known for its fast-paced nature, also values speed on the field. While there is no specific 60-yard dash equivalent in soccer, there are various speed tests conducted during training and scouting sessions.

These tests measure a player’s sprinting ability over short distances, focusing on their acceleration and quickness.

Pace is a highly coveted skill in soccer, as it allows players to outrun opponents, make rapid attacking runs, and track back defensively.

Improving Your 60-Yard Dash Time

If you’re looking to improve your 60-yard dash time in baseball, there are several key areas to focus on. Developing proper running mechanics and technique is crucial for maximizing speed. Pay attention to your stride length, arm swing, and body posture during the sprint. 

Working on strength and conditioning can enhance your speed on the field. Incorporate exercises that target your lower body, such as squats, lunges, and plyometrics, to improve explosiveness and power. Additionally, agility drills, like ladder drills and cone drills, can help enhance your acceleration and change of direction.

Mental preparation is another important aspect of improving your 60-yard dash time. Visualize yourself running the sprint smoothly and confidently. Stay focused and maintain a positive mindset during training and competition. Finally, make sure you warm up properly before each sprint to prevent injuries and optimize performance.

Frequently Asked Questions

How is the 60-yard dash time measured in baseball? 

The 60-yard dash time is typically measured using electronic timing gates at the starting and finishing points.

Athletes start from a stationary position and sprint as fast as they can to the finish line. The electronic timing gates accurately record the time it takes for the athlete to complete the 60 yards.

Are there any drills that can specifically improve 60-yard dash times? 

Some common drills to improve your 60-yard dash time include parachute sprints, resistance band sprints, and hill sprints.

These drills focus on increasing explosiveness, stride length, and overall speed. Incorporating these drills into your training routine can help you develop the necessary skills to improve your 60-yard dash time.

What Other Ways Can a Baseball Player’s Performance Be Measured?

While speed is one of five essential skills in baseball, there are four other skills used to judge a player’s overall performance.

Hitting for average, hitting for power, fielding, and arm strength are all crucial skills in the game. A well-rounded player who possesses a combination of these skills, along with speed, can have a significant impact on the field.

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Steve Nelson

I'm the owner of Baseball Training World. I live in Denver, Colorado and I enjoy playing baseball in an adult baseball team in the surrounding area. Read more about Steve Nelson.