1995 American League Championship Series

The 1995 American League Championship Series (ALCS), the second round of the 1995 American League playoffs, matched the Central Division champion Cleveland Indians against the West Division champion Seattle Mariners. The Mariners had the home field advantage, which was predetermined and assigned to either the West Division champion or their opponents in the Division Series.

The two teams were victorious in the AL Division Series (ALDS), with the Indians defeating the East Division champion Boston Red Sox three games to none, and the Mariners defeating the wild card qualifier New York Yankees three games to two. The Indians won the series four games to two to become the American League champions, and lost to the National League champion Atlanta Braves in the 1995 World Series.

1995 American League Championship Series
Teams
Team (Wins) Manager Season
Cleveland Indians (4) Mike Hargrove 100–44, .694, GA: 30
Seattle Mariners (2) Lou Piniella 79–66, .545, GA: 1
DatesOctober 10–17
MVPOrel Hershiser (Cleveland)
UmpiresDave Phillips (Games 1–4), Ken Kaiser (Game 6), Derryl Cousins, Rick Reed, Dale Ford, Tim McClelland, Drew Coble
ALDS
Broadcast
TelevisionABC (Games 1–2)
NBC (Games 3–6)
TV announcersBrent Musburger and Jim Kaat (Games 1–2)
Bob Costas and Bob Uecker (Games 3–6)
RadioCBS
Radio announcersJohn Rooney and Gary Cohen

Summary

Seattle Mariners vs. Cleveland Indians

Cleveland won the series, 4–2.

Game Date Score Location Time Attendance 
1 October 10 Cleveland Indians – 2, Seattle Mariners – 3 Kingdome 3:07 57,065[1] 
2 October 11 Cleveland Indians – 5, Seattle Mariners – 2 Kingdome 3:14 58,144[2] 
3 October 13 Seattle Mariners – 5, Cleveland Indians – 2 (11 innings) Jacobs Field 3:18 43,643[3] 
4 October 14 Seattle Mariners – 0, Cleveland Indians – 7 Jacobs Field 3:30 43,686[4] 
5 October 15 Seattle Mariners – 2, Cleveland Indians – 3 Jacobs Field 3:37 43,607[5] 
6 October 17 Cleveland Indians – 4, Seattle Mariners – 0 Kingdome 2:54 58,489[6]

Game summaries

Game 1

Tuesday, October 10, 1995, at Kingdome in Seattle, Washington

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Cleveland 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 10 1
Seattle 0 2 0 0 0 0 1 0 X 3 7 0
WP: Bob Wolcott (1–0)   LP: Dennis Martínez (0–1)   Sv: Norm Charlton (1)
Home runs:
CLE: Albert Belle (1)
SEA: Mike Blowers (1)

The Indians called on the veteran Dennis Martínez for Game 1. The Mariners rode the arm of rookie Bob Wolcott. Obviously nervous at the outset, Wolcott walked the first three hitters on 13 pitches, but he would get out of the bases-loaded, nobody-out situation with ease; he first struck out Albert Belle, got Eddie Murray on a foul pop-fly, then induced a groundout from Jim Thome on a great diving stop by Joey Cora. In the second, Mike Blowers hit a two-run homer to put the Mariners in front, 2–0. However, the Indians would put together a run in the next inning and in the seventh, Belle's homer tied the game at two. With Martinez still pitching in a tie game, the Mariners would take the lead thanks to Luis Sojo's go-ahead double in the bottom half of the seventh. Norm Charlton would come on in the eighth for a ​1 13 inning save. He would retire the side in order in the ninth, and the Mariners took Game 1.

Game 2

Wednesday, October 11, 1995, at Kingdome in Seattle, Washington

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Cleveland 0 0 0 0 2 2 0 1 0 5 12 0
Seattle 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 2 6 1
WP: Orel Hershiser (1–0)   LP: Tim Belcher (0–1)
Home runs:
CLE: Manny Ramírez 2 (2)
SEA: Ken Griffey, Jr. (1), Jay Buhner (1)

The Indians' second veteran Orel Hershiser was called upon to stem the tide against Tim Belcher. Both pitchers dueled for four innings until the Indians broke through in the top of the fifth with a two-run single by Carlos Baerga. In the next inning, the Indians grabbed two more on a Manny Ramírez homer and an RBI triple by Sandy Alomar, Jr.. Ken Griffey, Jr.'s sixth postseason homer put the Mariners on the board to make it 4–1 in the bottom of the sixth. The Indians would put the game away when Manny Ramírez hit his second homer of the game in the eighth to make it 5–1. Hershiser would give way to José Mesa in the ninth. Mesa would issue a one-out homer to Jay Buhner but would recover to close out the win. With the victory, Hershiser raised his postseason record to 6–0 with a 1.47 ERA in ​73 13 innings.[7]

Game 3

Friday, October 13, 1995, at Jacobs Field in Cleveland, Ohio

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 R H E
Seattle 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 5 9 1
Cleveland 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 4 2
WP: Norm Charlton (1–0)   LP: Julián Tavárez (0–1)
Home runs:
SEA: Jay Buhner 2 (3)
CLE: None

In Game 3, the starting pitchers were Randy Johnson and Charles Nagy. Nagy and Johnson pitched a scoreless first but the Mariners broke through on a homer by Jay Buhner. Then an error in the third by Álvaro Espinoza gave the Mariners one more run to make it 2–0 Seattle. The Indians put a run on the board after a leadoff triple by Kenny Lofton and a sac fly by Omar Vizquel in the fourth. In the bottom of the eighth, Buhner missed a deep fly ball to right; Lofton then singled through the left side to tie the game at two. The game moved to extra innings and in the eleventh, Buhner, whose miscue tied the game, got sweet redemption with a three-run home run to give the Mariners a 5–2 lead. Charlton, pitching in relief since the ninth inning, got the win and shut down the Indians in the bottom of the eleventh.

Game 4

Saturday, October 14, 1995, at Jacobs Field in Cleveland, Ohio

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Seattle 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 1
Cleveland 3 1 2 0 0 1 0 0 X 7 9 0
WP: Ken Hill (1–0)   LP: Andy Benes (0–1)
Home runs:
SEA: None
CLE: Eddie Murray (1), Jim Thome (1)

With their backs to the wall in Game 4, Cleveland called on Ken Hill to help tie the series. Opposing him would be Andy Benes. Benes wouldn't fare well against Hill and the Cleveland hitters. The Indians put three on the board in the first, a rally capped by Murray's two-run homer. A sac fly by Kenny Lofton made it 4–0 in the second. Then the rain began to fall on Seattle's parade in the third as Benes surrendered a two-run homer to Jim Thome in the rain. Benes was done and the rain ended after the third was over. Hill would pitch beyond expectations and lead his team to an easy 7–0 shutout.

Game 5

Sunday, October 15, 1995, at Jacobs Field in Cleveland, Ohio

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Seattle 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 5 2
Cleveland 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 X 3 10 4
WP: Orel Hershiser (2–0)   LP: Chris Bosio (0–1)   Sv: José Mesa (1)
Home runs:
SEA: None
CLE: Jim Thome (2)

Game 5 was a matchup between Chris Bosio and Orel Hershiser. Hershiser was looking to continue his excellence and he got help quickly when the Indians knocked home a run in the first thanks to an error by Tino Martinez. But Hershiser's slim lead would be cut in the third when Ken Griffey, Jr.'s RBI double tied the game. In the fifth, an error by Belle gave the Mariners the lead. The Mariners were closing in on a 3–2 series lead going home, but the Indians wouldn't allow it as Thome stepped to the plate in the sixth with a man on and hit a two-run homer to give the lead back to the Indians. The Mariners had their share of chances; in the seventh, they had men on the corners with one out and Griffey at the plate. Paul Assenmacher was summoned from the bullpen. He proceeded to strike out Griffey on a high fastball, then Jay Buhner stepped to the plate. In this situation, manager Mike Hargrove would usually bring in a right-hander, but he stayed with Assenmacher. He struck out Buhner on a low breaking ball and then slowly, stoically walked off the mound, with 40,000 fans screaming wildly. The Mariners could never capitalize on any more opportunities and José Mesa closed the door in the ninth.

Game 6

Tuesday, October 17, 1995, at Kingdome in Seattle, Washington

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Cleveland 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 3 0 4 8 0
Seattle 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 1
WP: Dennis Martínez (1–1)   LP: Randy Johnson (0–1)
Home runs:
CLE: Carlos Baerga (1)
SEA: None

In the potential clincher, Dennis Martínez faced Randy Johnson. Both pitchers kept the game scoreless until the top of the fifth. A key error by Joey Cora allowed Kenny Lofton to single home a run to put the Indians up. With the score still 1–0 in the eighth, the Indians put three runs together against Johnson. A passed ball with two men in scoring position allowed both of them to score. Kenny Lofton made a mad dash from second base, sliding in just ahead of the tag from Johnson, and the entire Cleveland dugout ran onto the field to celebrate. Then Carlos Baerga followed with a homer to give the Indians a commanding 4–0 lead with six outs to go. Once again, José Mesa came on to close the door in the ninth and did so with ease. The Indians had won their first pennant since 1954. The Mariners were one of the very few teams to have lost in two shutouts in one series.

Composite box

1995 ALCS (4–2): Cleveland Indians over Seattle Mariners

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 R H E
Cleveland Indians 4 1 3 1 3 5 1 5 0 0 0 23 53 7
Seattle Mariners 0 3 2 0 1 1 1 0 1 0 3 12 37 6
Total attendance: 304,634   Average attendance: 50,772

References

  1. ^ "1995 ALCS Game 1 - Cleveland Indians vs. Seattle Mariners". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  2. ^ "1995 ALCS Game 2 - Cleveland Indians vs. Seattle Mariners". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  3. ^ "1995 ALCS Game 3 - Seattle Mariners vs. Cleveland Indians". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  4. ^ "1995 ALCS Game 4 - Seattle Mariners vs. Cleveland Indians". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  5. ^ "1995 ALCS Game 5 - Seattle Mariners vs. Cleveland Indians". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  6. ^ "1995 ALCS Game 6 - Cleveland Indians vs. Seattle Mariners". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  7. ^ The Glorious Indian Summer of 1995, p.164, Russell Schneider, Russell Schneider Enterprises, Cleveland, ISBN 0-9649813-0-0

External links

1995 American League Division Series

The 1995 American League Division Series (ALDS), the opening round of the 1995 American League playoffs, began on Tuesday, October 3, and ended on Sunday, October 8, with the champions of the three AL divisions—along with a "wild card" team—participating in two best-of-five series. As a result of both leagues realigning into three divisions in 1994, it marked the first time in major league history that a team could qualify for postseason play without finishing in first place in its league or division. The teams were:

(1) Seattle Mariners (Western Division champion, 79–66) vs. (4) New York Yankees (Wild Card, 79–65): Mariners win series, 3–2.

(2) Boston Red Sox (Eastern Division champion, 86–58) vs. (3) Cleveland Indians (Central Division champion, 100–44): Indians win series, 3–0.The format of this series and the NLDS was the same as the League Championship Series prior to 1985, a five-game set wherein the first two games were played at one stadium and the last three at the other. This was much criticized as the team with home field advantage had its games back ended while a team with two games often preferred them in the middle as opposed to three straight in the opposing team's ballpark. The highly unpopular format was changed in 1998 for the present and more logical 2–2–1 format, which has been used in the LDS since except for 2012, when the 2-3 format was used due to the additional of the Wild Card games.

Because of realignment, this was the first time that both the Yankees and the Red Sox reached the playoffs in the same year.The Seattle Mariners and Cleveland Indians went on to meet in the AL Championship Series (ALCS). The Indians became the American League champion, and lost to the National League champion Atlanta Braves in the 1995 World Series.

1995 Cleveland Indians season

The 1995 Cleveland Indians season was the Major League Baseball season that led to the Indians returning to the World Series for the first time since 1954. In a season that started late by 18 games – giving it just 144 games – the Indians finished in first place in the American League Central Division with a record of 100 wins and 44 losses. This was the first team in the history of the American League ever to win 100 games in a season that had fewer than 154 games.The most outstanding pitcher for the Indians was their relief pitcher, José Mesa, who finished second in the voting for the American League's Cy Young Award. Mesa pitched in 62 games; he led the league by being the finishing pitcher in 57 games, and he saved a league-leading 46 games, even though he pitched just exactly 64 innings. Mesa was the winning pitcher in three games, and he lost none. Mesa's earned run average was a microscopic 1.13. Mesa only gave up eight earned runs, one unearned run, and three home runs in the entire regular season.

The most outstanding batter and everyday player for the Indians was their left fielder, Albert Belle, who finished second in the voting for the American League's Most Valuable Player Award. Belle played in 143 of the 144 games, and had more than 50 doubles and 50 home runs. Belle led the league in runs scored (121), runs batted in (126), doubles (52), home runs (50), total bases (377), and slugging percentage (.690). Belle had 173 hits and a batting average of .317.

The second most outstanding batter and everyday player for the Indians was their right fielder, Manny Ramirez. Ramirez played in 137 games, scored 85 runs, batted in 107 runs, hit 26 doubles and 31 home runs, had 149 hits, and batted .308.

On a team that was led by its outfielders in batting, the Indian's center fielder Kenny Lofton, playing in just 118 games, also had 149 hits, scored 93 runs, batted .310, and led the American League with 13 triples and 54 stolen bases. This was Lofton's fourth of five consecutive years leading the American League in stolen bases. Lofton also won a Gold Glove in the outfield. However, Lofton only hit seven home runs and batted in 53 runs.

The Indians won the Central Division by an overwhelming 30 games over the second-place Kansas City Royals, and they went into the playoffs going strong. In their American League Division Series, the Indians defeated the Boston Red Sox in a three games to none sweep. Next, in the American League Championship Series, the Indians defeated the Seattle Mariners four games to two. The Indians' starting pitcher, Orel Hershiser, was voted the American League Championship Series' Most Valuable Player.

In the World Series, the Indians faced the Atlanta Braves, who had finished the regular season with a 90 – 54 record, had defeated the Colorado Rockies three games to one in the National League Division Series, and had swept the Cincinnati Reds four games to none in the National League Championship Series. The Braves had the National League's Cy Young Award winner in Greg Maddux, who finished the season with a 19 – 2 won-loss record and a 1.63 earned run average as a starting pitcher. Maddux also finished in third place in the voting for Most Valuable Player.

In the World Series, the Indians lost the World Series to the Braves by four games to two, with the Braves winning all three games in Atlanta, and the Indians winning two out of three games in Cleveland. The World Series Most Valuable Player was the starting pitcher Tom Glavine of the Braves, who won two games in the Series.

Bill Risley

William Charles Risley (born May 29, 1967), is a former professional pitcher in Major League Baseball from 1992–1998 for the Montreal Expos, Toronto Blue Jays, and Seattle Mariners.

Eddie Murray

Eddie Clarence Murray (born February 24, 1956), nicknamed "Steady Eddie", is a former Major League Baseball (MLB) first baseman and designated hitter. Spending most of his MLB career with the Baltimore Orioles, he ranks fourth in team history in both games played and hits. Though Murray never won a Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award, he finished in the top ten in MVP voting several times. After his playing career, Murray coached for the Orioles, Cleveland Indians and Los Angeles Dodgers.

He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2003. In the New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract (2001), Murray is described as the fifth-best first baseman in major league history. He was 77th on the list of the Baseball's 100 Greatest Players by The Sporting News (1998).

Joey Cora

José Manuel Cora Amaro (born May 14, 1965) is a former Major League Baseball player with an 11-year career in MLB spanning the years 1987 and 1989–1998. He played for the San Diego Padres of the National League and the Chicago White Sox, Seattle Mariners and Cleveland Indians of the American League. He played second base, shortstop, third base and also served as a designated hitter.

List of Major League Baseball mascots

This is a list of current and former Major League Baseball mascots, sorted alphabetically.

The tradition in the Major League Baseball mascot began with Mr. Met, introduced for the New York Mets when Shea Stadium opened in 1964. Although some mascots came and went over time, the popularity of mascots increased when The San Diego Chicken started independently making appearances at San Diego Padres games in 1977. Philadelphia Phillies management felt they needed a mascot similar to the Chicken, so they debuted the Phillie Phanatic in 1978.

Today, all but three major-league teams have "official" mascots (Dodgers, Yankees, and Angels). Five team mascots – Sluggerrr (Kansas City Royals), the San Diego Chicken, the Phillie Phanatic, Mr. Met, and Slider (Cleveland Indians) – have been inducted into the Mascot Hall of Fame. Several others have been nominated since the Hall's creation in 2005.

Mascots in the MLB are often used to help market the team and league to young children.

Luis Sojo

Luis Beltrán Sojo Sojo ( SOH-hoh; Spanish pronunciation: [ˈlwiz βelˈtɾan ˈsoxo]; born January 3, 1965) is a former Major League Baseball infielder and right-handed batter.

In his career, Sojo filled a role as a utility infielder for the Blue Jays, Angels, Mariners, Pirates and, most notably, for the Yankees.

Manny Ramirez

Manuel Arístides Ramírez Onelcida (born May 30, 1972) is a Dominican-American former professional baseball outfielder. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for parts of 19 seasons. He played with the Cleveland Indians, Boston Red Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers, Chicago White Sox, and Tampa Bay Rays before playing one season in the Chinese Professional Baseball League. Ramirez is recognized for having had great batting skill and power. He was a nine-time Silver Slugger and was one of 27 players to hit 500 career home runs. His 21 grand slams are third all-time, and his 29 postseason home runs are the most in MLB history. He appeared in 12 All-Star Games, with a streak of eleven consecutive games beginning in 1998 that included every season that he played with the Red Sox.Ramirez was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. When he was 13 years old, he moved to New York City with his parents, Onelcida and Aristides. He attended George Washington High School and became a baseball standout. He was drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the first round of the 1991 MLB draft, 13th overall. He made his MLB debut on September 2, 1993.

In 1994, Ramirez became a major league regular, and finished second in voting for the Rookie of the Year Award. By 1995, he had become an All-Star. He was with the Indians in playoff appearances in 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, and 1999; this included an appearance in the 1995 and 1997 World Series. In 1999, Ramirez set the Indians' single-season RBIs record with 165 RBIs. After the 2000 season, Ramirez signed with the Boston Red Sox. During his time in Boston, Ramirez and teammate David Ortiz became one of the best offensive tandems in baseball history. Ramirez led the Red Sox to World Series Championships in 2004 and 2007 before being traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2008 as part of a three team deal that also involved the Pittsburgh Pirates.

In 2009 Ramirez was suspended 50 games for violating baseball's drug policy by taking human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), a women's fertility drug that is often taken after steroids. In the spring of 2011, Ramirez was informed by MLB of another violation of its drug policy, and a 100-game suspension. He chose to retire on April 8 rather than be suspended. However, in September 2011, Ramirez wished to be reinstated and agreed in December with the league to a reduced 50-game suspension. Though he played at various points in the Oakland Athletics, Texas Rangers, and Chicago Cubs systems, as well as internationally, Ramirez did not appear in another Major League game.

Known as a complete hitter who could hit for both power and average, and widely regarded as one of the best right handed hitters of his generation, Ramirez finished his career with a lifetime .312 batting average, 555 home runs (15th all time), and 1,831 RBI (18th all time).

Orel Hershiser

Orel Leonard Hershiser IV (born September 16, 1958) is an American former baseball pitcher who played 18 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1983 to 2000. He later became a broadcast color analyst for the Dodgers. He is also a professional poker player.

After playing baseball in high school at Cherry Hill High School East and at Bowling Green State University, Hershiser was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1979. After several years in the minor leagues, he made his major league debut with the Dodgers in 1983. During his tenure with the team, Hershiser was a three-time All-Star. Hershiser's most successful season came in 1988, when he set a major league record by pitching 59 consecutive innings without allowing a run. He helped lead the Dodgers to a championship in the 1988 World Series, and was named the National League (NL) Championship Series Most Valuable Player (MVP) and the World Series MVP. That season, he won the NL Cy Young Award and an NL Gold Glove Award. He later pitched in two more World Series and earned the American League Championship Series MVP Award. After 12 seasons with the Dodgers, Hershisher spent time with the Cleveland Indians, San Francisco Giants, and New York Mets before returning to Los Angeles for his final season. After retirement as a player, he briefly worked as a coach and team executive for the Texas Rangers before serving as a color analyst for ESPN and then the Dodgers.

Known for his slight frame and fierce competitive spirit, Hershiser was nicknamed "Bulldog" by former Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda, who managed Hershiser during his time with the Dodgers.

Orel Hershiser's scoreless innings streak

During the 1988 Major League Baseball season, pitcher Orel Hershiser of the Los Angeles Dodgers set the MLB record for consecutive scoreless innings pitched. Over 59 consecutive innings, opposing hitters did not score a run against Hershiser. During the streak, he averted numerous high-risk scoring situations. The streak spanned from the sixth inning of an August 30 game against the Montreal Expos to the tenth inning of a September 28 game against the San Diego Padres. The previous record of ​58 2⁄3 innings was set by former Dodger pitcher Don Drysdale in 1968; as the team's radio announcer, Drysdale called Hershiser's streak as he pursued the new record. Pundits have described the streak as among the greatest individual feats in sports and among the greatest records in baseball history.

During the streak, the Elias Sports Bureau changed its criteria for the official consecutive scoreless innings record for starting pitchers from including fractional innings in which one or two outs had been recorded to counting only complete scoreless innings. Since the streak was active at the end of the 1988 season, it would have spanned two separate seasons if Hershiser had pitched any additional scoreless innings to begin the next year. However, he yielded a run in his first inning of work in the 1989 season against the Cincinnati Reds, thus ending the streak. The streak only includes innings pitched in the regular season, excluding eight scoreless innings Hershiser pitched to start Game 1 of the 1988 National League Championship Series on October 4 (unofficially extending his streak to 67 combined innings). Although he completed the ninth inning in each start, the streak's final game lasted 16 innings, of which he only pitched the first ten. Thus, Hershiser did not match Drysdale's record of six consecutive complete game shutouts. Like Drysdale's streak, the penultimate game of Hershiser's streak was a Dodgers–Giants game that featured a controversial umpire's ruling that saved the streak.

The streak was initially overshadowed by Hershiser achieving 20 wins and the race for the NL Cy Young Award between Hershiser and Danny Jackson until Hershiser reached 40 consecutive innings. Another distraction during the streak was his wife's pregnancy and his son's childbirth complications. The record-setting game was overshadowed by the 1988 Summer Olympics, football, and baseball pennant races; it was not broadcast on local television in Los Angeles. Following the regular season, Hershiser was awarded the NL Cy Young Award. In the playoffs, he earned both the NL Championship Series Most Valuable Player Award and the World Series MVP Award. He also secured Sportsman of the Year and Associated Press Athlete of the Year honors. Hershiser appeared in the 1989 MLB All-Star Game and continued to be an effective pitcher for many seasons, including two additional appearances in the World Series, one of which was preceded by his winning the 1995 AL Championship Series MVP Award.

The Baseball Network

The Baseball Network was a short-lived television broadcasting joint venture between ABC, NBC and Major League Baseball. Under the arrangement, beginning in the 1994 season, the league produced its own in-house telecasts of games, which were then brokered to air on ABC and NBC. This was perhaps most evident by the copyright beds shown at the end of the telecasts, which stated "The proceeding program has been paid for by the office of The Commissioner of Baseball". The Baseball Network was the first television network in the United States to be owned by a professional sports league. In essence, The Baseball Network could be seen as a forerunner to the MLB Network, which would debut about 15 years later.

The package included coverage of games in primetime on selected nights throughout the regular season (under the branding Baseball Night in America), along with coverage of the postseason and the World Series. Unlike previous broadcasting arrangements with the league, there was no national "game of the week" during the regular season; these would be replaced by multiple weekly regional telecasts on certain nights of the week. Additionally, The Baseball Network had exclusive coverage windows; no other broadcaster could televise MLB games during the same night that The Baseball Network was televising games.

The arrangement did not last long; due to the effects of a players' strike on the remainder of the 1994 season, and poor reception from fans and critics over how the coverage was implemented, The Baseball Network would be disbanded after the 1995 season. While NBC would maintain rights to certain games, the growing Fox network (having established its own sports division two years earlier in 1994) became the league's new national broadcast partner beginning in 1996, with its then-parent company News Corporation eventually purchasing the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1998 (although the company has since sold the team).

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