WA-List » Athletic Heights

Athletic Heights

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Sports & Recreation

How tall are our sports heroes?  If we could gather some of the more famous Northwest athletes in our office and scratch pencil marks into the wall just behind their heads, we’d end up with a crowded room and souvenir lines etched into the plaster ranging from 5’4″ to 7’2″ — a 22 inch range.  But our door is only 6’5″ tall and we probably couldn’t justify everyone’s travel expenses anyway.

We dropped back to Plan B. We lined their names against the wall.  The result is the list below.  These are some of the sports stars from Washington’s sports history arranged by height. James Donaldson (at right) tops the list. Compare yourself to these athletes: Where do you stand?

NOTES:  Most of these athletes played for Northwest teams.  A few others were born in Washington and earned fame elsewhere.  Local sports fans will probably know them in either case.  The most recent addition to the Seattle scene that made the list is Breanna Stewart, 4-time NCAA basketball champ from the University of Connecticut who was drafted by the Seattle Storm in April, 2016.  You’ll probably know someone we missed, too.  Yes, we certainly admit it’s an incomplete list.  We had to leave people off.  (We also couldn’t find data for everyone.  Does anyone know how tall pro bowler Earl Anthony was?)


7′ 2″

  • James Donaldson (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics center

6′ 11″

  • Jack Sikma (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics center

6′ 10″

  • Shawn Kemp (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics center
  • Randy Johnson (baseball) Seattle Mariners pitcher

6′ 9″

  • Detlef Schrempf (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics forward

6′ 5.5″

  • Nathan Adrian (Olympics) swimmer

6′ 5″

  • Lauren Jackson (basketball) Seattle Storm center
  • Walter Jones (football) Seattle Seahawks tackle
  • Nate McMillan (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics point guard
  • John Olerud (baseball) Mariners first baseman

6′ 4″

  • Freddy Garcia (baseball) Seattle Mariners pitcher
  • Matt Hasselbeck (football) Seattle Seahawks quarterback
  • Dennis Johnson (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics point guard
  • Gary Payton (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics point guard
  • Breanna Stewart (basketball) Seattle Storm center, power forward

6′ 3″

  • Fred Brown (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics guard
  • Jay Buhner (baseball) Seattle Mariners right fielder
  • Kenny Easley (football) Seattle Seahawks defensive back
  • John Elway (football) Denver Broncos quarterback
  • Ken Griffey Jr (baseball) Seattle Mariners center fielder
  • Felix Hernandez (baseball) Seattle Mariners pitcher
  • Cortez Kennedy (football) Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle
  • Warren Moon (football) Seattle Seahawks quarterback
  • Alex Rodriguez (baseball) Seattle Mariners shortstop
  • Richard Sherman (football) Seattle Seahawks defensive back

6′ 2″

  • Mike Cameron (baseball) Seattle Mariners center fielder
  • Nelson Cruz (baseball) Seattle Mariners right fielder
  • Fred Hutchinson (baseball) Seattle Rainiers pitcher
  • Raúl Ibañez (baseball) Seattle Mariners outfielder
  • Kasey Keller (soccer) Seattle Sounders goalkeeper
  • Mark Langston (baseball) Seattle Mariners first baseman
  • Ahmad Rashad (football) Minnesota Vikings wide receiver
  • Gus Williams (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics guard
  • Jim Zorn (football) Seattle Seahawks quarterback

6′ 1″

  • Alvin Davis (baseball) Seattle Mariners first baseman
  • Dave Krieg (football) Seattle Seahawks quarterback
  • John Stockton (basketball) Gonzaga Bulldogs point guard
  • Slick Watts (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics point guard
  • Lenny Wilkens (basketball) Seattle SuperSonics point guard

6′ 0″

  • Robinson Cano (baseball) Seattle Mariners second baseman
  • Edgar Martinez (baseball) Seattle Mariners designated hitter
  • Jamie Moyer (baseball) Seattle Mariners pitcher
  • Ron Santo (baseball) Chicago Cubs third baseman
  • Sugar Ray Seales (Olympics) boxer

5′ 11″

  • Shaun Alexander (football) Seattle Seahawks running back
  • Adrian Beltre (baseball) Seattle Mariners third baseman
  • Brian Blades (football) Seattle Seahawks wide receiver
  • Fred Couples (golf)
  • Joey Galloway (football) Seattle Seahawks wide receiver
  • Steve Largent (football) Seattle Seahawks wide receiver
  • Marshawn Lynch (football) Seattle Seahawks running back
  • Harold Reynolds (baseball) Seattle Mariners second baseman
  • Ichiro Suzuki (baseball) Seattle Mariners right fielder
  • Curt Warner (football) Seattle Seahawks running back
  • Russell Wilson (football) Seattle Seahawks quarterback

5′ 10″

  • Bret Boone (baseball) Seattle Mariners second baseman
  • Ruppert Jones (baseball) Seattle Mariners center fielder
  • Earl Thomas (football) Seattle Seahawks defensive back

5′ 9″

  • Earl Averill (baseball) Cleveland Indians center fielder
  • Kasey Kahne (auto racing) NASCAR driver
  • Hope Solo (soccer) Seattle Reign goalkeeper
  • Omar Vizquel (baseball) Seattle Mariners shortstop

5′ 8.5″

  • Sue Bird (basketball) Seattle Storm point guard
  • Phil Mahre (Olympics) skier

5′ 8″

  • Apolo Anton Ohno (Olympics) short track speed skater

5′ 7.5″

  • Leo Randolph (Olympics) boxer

5′ 6.5″

  • Megan Quann (Olympics) swimer

5′ 4″

  • Gretchen Fraser (Olympics) skier
  • Gary Stevens (horse racing) Longacres jockey & Kentucky Derby winner


PHOTO: James Donaldson, 2009 by Joe Mabel.

SOURCES: To be consistent, we attempted to gather all the heights from a single source.  The best multi-sport resource we found was the family of Sports-Reference databases.  It covered most but not all the athletes on our initial list. We lurked around various online sites to find the others, always seeking two sites that agreed on the given height.  After initially considering the inclusion of athlete weights, we quickly abandoned the effort.  Weights are much more variable than heights over an athletic career.


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