According to biographical information maintained by Retrosheet, the average height of major leaguers across baseball’s history is just a shade over 6’0″ (about six feet and a quarter inch). But that number tends to fluctuate and has moved upward over time.

In fact, the average height among 1494 players who appeared in the majors in 2022 was nearly 6’2″ — six feet, one-and-three-quarters inches.

By comparison, reports that the average adult male in the United States stands just 5’9″. That means the average ballplayer is nearly 5 inches taller than the man on the street. Not up to NBA standards by any means, but baseball players tend to be tall drinks of water when compared to most “normal” folks.

That’s not always the case, though, as some of the greatest players in history checked in with more average heights:

  • Joe Morgan, 5’7″
  • Ivan Rodriguez, 5’9″
  • Mel Ott, 5’9″
  • Phil Rizzuto, 5’6″
  • Roy Campanella, 5’9″
  • Wee Willie Keeler, 5’4″

There are plenty of others, but all of those guys are Hall of Famers. They were among the best of the best to ever step foot on a major league diamond, despite their diminutive stature.

And, even though Keeler was tiny, he wasn’t the shortest MLB player ever. That honor goes to Eddie Gaedel, who stood just 3’7″ and collected one plate appearance for the St. Louis Browns on August 19, 1951. He walked on four straight pitches from Detroit Tigers starter Bob Cain in what amounted to a publicity stunt to draw more fans by Browns owner Bill Veeck.

At the other end of the spectrum, Sean Hjelle and Jon Rauch both stand 6’11”, locking them in a tie for the title of tallest major league player ever.