1996 Major League Baseball season

The 1996 Major League Baseball season was the final season of play before the beginning of Interleague play the following season. It ended with the New York Yankees defeating the defending champion Atlanta Braves in six games for the World Series title, the Yankees first championship since 1978. The record for most home runs hit in an MLB regular season, set at 4,458 in 1987,[1] was broken, as the AL and NL combined to hit 4,962 home runs.[2] Only 196 shutouts were recorded in the 2,266 MLB regular-season games.[3]

1996 MLB season
LeagueMajor League Baseball
SportBaseball
DurationMarch 31 – October 26, 1996
Draft
Top draft pickKris Benson
Picked byPittsburgh Pirates
Regular Season
Season MVPAL: Juan González (TEX)
NL: Ken Caminiti (SD)
League Postseason
AL championsNew York Yankees
  AL runners-upBaltimore Orioles
NL championsAtlanta Braves
  NL runners-upSt. Louis Cardinals
World Series
ChampionsNew York Yankees
  Runners-upAtlanta Braves
World Series MVPJohn Wetteland (NYY)

Major league baseball final standings

American League

AL East W L Pct. GB Home Road
New York Yankees 92 70 0.568 49–31 43–39
Baltimore Orioles 88 74 0.543 4 43–38 45–36
Boston Red Sox 85 77 0.525 7 47–34 38–43
Toronto Blue Jays 74 88 0.457 18 35–46 39–42
Detroit Tigers 53 109 0.327 39 27–54 26–55
AL Central W L Pct. GB Home Road
Cleveland Indians 99 62 0.615 51–29 48–33
Chicago White Sox 85 77 0.525 14½ 44–37 41–40
Milwaukee Brewers 80 82 0.494 19½ 38–43 42–39
Minnesota Twins 78 84 0.481 21½ 39–43 39–41
Kansas City Royals 75 86 0.466 24 37–43 38–43
AL West W L Pct. GB Home Road
Texas Rangers 90 72 0.556 50–31 40–41
Seattle Mariners 85 76 0.528 43–38 42–38
Oakland Athletics 78 84 0.481 12 40–41 38–43
California Angels 70 91 0.435 19½ 43–38 27–53

National League

NL East W L Pct. GB Home Road
Atlanta Braves 96 66 0.593 56–25 40–41
Montreal Expos 88 74 0.543 8 50–31 38–43
Florida Marlins 80 82 0.494 16 52–29 28–53
New York Mets 71 91 0.438 25 42–39 29–52
Philadelphia Phillies 67 95 0.414 29 35–46 32–49
NL Central W L Pct. GB Home Road
St. Louis Cardinals 88 74 0.543 48–33 40–41
Houston Astros 82 80 0.506 6 48–33 34–47
Cincinnati Reds 81 81 0.500 7 46–35 35–46
Chicago Cubs 76 86 0.469 12 43–38 33–48
Pittsburgh Pirates 73 89 0.451 15 36–44 37–45
NL West W L Pct. GB Home Road
San Diego Padres 91 71 0.562 45–36 46–35
Los Angeles Dodgers 90 72 0.556 1 47–34 43–38
Colorado Rockies 83 79 0.512 8 55–26 28–53
San Francisco Giants 68 94 0.420 23 38–44 30–50

Postseason

  Division Series
Fox/NBC/ESPN
League Championship Series
NBC/Fox
World Series
Fox
                           
  East NY Yankees 3  
West Texas 1  
  East NY Yankees 4  
American League
  WC Baltimore 1  
WC Baltimore 3
  Central Cleveland 1  
    AL NY Yankees 4
  NL Atlanta 2
  East Atlanta 3  
WC Los Angeles 0  
  East Atlanta 4
National League
  Central St. Louis 3  
West San Diego 0
  Central St. Louis 3  

Awards and honors

Baseball Writers' Association of America Awards
BBWAA Award National League American League
Rookie of the Year Todd Hollandsworth (LA) Derek Jeter (NYY)
Cy Young Award John Smoltz (ATL) Pat Hentgen (TOR)
Manager of the Year Johnny Oates (TEX)

Joe Torre (NYY)

Bruce Bochy (SD)
Most Valuable Player Ken Caminiti (SD) Juan González (TEX)
Gold Glove Awards
Position National League American League
Pitcher Greg Maddux (ATL) Mike Mussina (BAL)
Catcher Charles Johnson (FLA) Iván Rodríguez (TEX)
First Baseman Mark Grace (CHC) J. T. Snow (CAL)
Second Baseman Craig Biggio (HOU) Roberto Alomar (BAL)
Third Baseman Ken Caminiti (SD) Robin Ventura (CHW)
Shortstop Barry Larkin (CIN) Omar Vizquel (CLE)
Outfielders Barry Bonds (SF) Kenny Lofton (CLE)
Marquis Grissom (MTL) Jay Buhner (SEA)
Steve Finley (SD) Ken Griffey Jr. (SEA)
Silver Slugger Awards
Pitcher/Designated Hitter Tom Glavine (ATL) Paul Molitor (MIN)
Catcher Mike Piazza (LA) Iván Rodríguez (TEX)
First Baseman Andrés Galarraga (COL) Mark McGwire (OAK)
Second Baseman Eric Young (COL) Roberto Alomar (BAL)
Third Baseman Ken Caminiti (SD) Jim Thome (CLE)
Shortstop Barry Larkin (CIN) Alex Rodriguez (SEA)
Outfielders Barry Bonds (SF) Albert Belle (CLE)
Ellis Burks (COL) Juan González (TEX)
Gary Sheffield (FLA) Ken Griffey Jr. (SEA)

MLB statistical leaders

Statistic American League National League
AVG Alex Rodriguez SEA .358 Tony Gwynn SD .353
HR Mark McGwire OAK 52 Andrés Galarraga COL 47
RBI Albert Belle CLE 148 Andrés Galarraga COL 150
Wins Andy Pettitte NYY 21 John Smoltz ATL 24
ERA Juan Guzmán TOR 2.93 Kevin Brown FLA 1.89
SO Roger Clemens BOS 257 John Smoltz ATL 276
SV John Wetteland NYY 43 Jeff Brantley CIN
Todd Worrell LA
44
SB Kenny Lofton CLE 75 Eric Young COL 53

Managers

American League

Team Manager Notes
Baltimore Orioles Davey Johnson
Boston Red Sox Kevin Kennedy
California Angels Marcel Lachemann, John McNamara, Joe Maddon
Chicago White Sox Terry Bevington
Cleveland Indians Mike Hargrove
Detroit Tigers Buddy Bell
Kansas City Royals Bob Boone
Milwaukee Brewers Phil Garner
Minnesota Twins Tom Kelly
New York Yankees Joe Torre Won World Series
Oakland Athletics Art Howe
Seattle Mariners Lou Piniella
Texas Rangers Johnny Oates
Toronto Blue Jays Cito Gaston

National League

Team Manager Notes
Atlanta Braves Bobby Cox Won National League Pennant
Chicago Cubs Jim Riggleman
Cincinnati Reds Ray Knight
Colorado Rockies Don Baylor
Florida Marlins Rene Lachemann, Cookie Rojas, John Boles
Houston Astros Terry Collins
Los Angeles Dodgers Tommy Lasorda, Bill Russell
Montreal Expos Felipe Alou
New York Mets Dallas Green, Bobby Valentine
Philadelphia Phillies Jim Fregosi
Pittsburgh Pirates Jim Leyland
St. Louis Cardinals Tony La Russa
San Diego Padres Bruce Bochy
San Francisco Giants Dusty Baker

Television coverage

Network Day of week Announcers
ESPN Sunday nights
Wednesday nights
Jon Miller, Joe Morgan
Fox Saturday afternoons Joe Buck, Tim McCarver, Thom Brennaman, Bob Brenly
NBC None[n1 1] Bob Costas, Joe Morgan, Bob Uecker

Events

January–June

  • January 8 – For only the seventh time in history, and the first time since 1971, the Baseball Writers' Association of America fails to select a player for induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
  • March 5 – The Veterans Committee elects four new members to the Hall of Fame, and just misses naming a fifth. The group elected includes Earl Weaver, Baltimore Orioles manager for 17 seasons; pitcher Jim Bunning, who won 100 games in each league; 19th-century manager Ned Hanlon, who won pennants in Baltimore and Brooklyn, and Bill Foster, the Negro Leagues' winningest pitcher. Second baseman Nellie Fox receives the necessary 75% of the Committee's votes, but the rules allow for election of only one modern player, and Bunning has more votes.
  • April 1 – Seven pitches into the first game of the season, at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati, home plate umpire John McSherry collapses on the field and dies of a massive heart attack. The game between the Cincinnati Reds and Montréal Expos is postponed, along with the rest of the games scheduled for that day. Reds owner Marge Schott later comes under fire for wanting the game in Cincinnati to continue despite the tragedy (and against the wishes of the players on both teams), saying that she felt "cheated" when it was canceled.
  • April 6 – Cleveland Indians player Albert Belle hits Sports Illustrated photographer Tony Tomsic in the hand prior to a game between the Indians and Toronto Blue Jays at Jacobs Field. The angry Indians outfielder had told the photographer to stop taking pictures of him doing pre-game stretches and Tomsic complied. Belle then throws a ball from the outfield that breaks the skin of the photographer's hand in two places and draws blood.[4]
  • May 14 – New York Yankee pitcher Dwight Gooden pitches the first Yankee Stadium no-hitter in 3 years as his Yankees beat the Seattle Mariners 3–0.
  • May 17 – Baltimore Orioles catcher Chris Hoiles hits a walk-off grand slam against the Seattle Mariners in the bottom of the ninth, down by three, with two outs and a full count. This is only the second occurrence of this cliché ultimate game ending event in the history of professional baseball; during the 1988 season, Alan Trammell became the first to accomplish this feat in a 7-6 comeback win over the Yankees.
  • June 1 – Major League Baseball games begin to be broadcast on Fox.
  • June 6 – The Boston Red Sox beat the Chicago White Sox 7–4, as John Valentin of Boston hits for the cycle and the White Sox complete a triple play. It marks the first time since July 1, 1931, that both events occur in the same game.

July–December

Movies

Deaths

  • February 8 – Del Ennis, 70, All-Star left fielder for the Phillies who had seven 100-RBI seasons, leading the NL for the 1950 "Whiz Kids" team, and was the team's career home run leader (259) until 1980
  • February 19 – Charles O. Finley, 77, owner of the Athletics from 1960 to 1981 who moved the team from Kansas City to Oakland, and was known for numerous gimmicks and controversies; won three straight World Series from 1972–74
  • March 8 – Bill Nicholson, 81, 5-time All-Star right fielder for the Cubs and Phillies who twice led the NL in home runs and RBI
  • April 1 – John McSherry, 51, National League umpire since 1971 who worked in eight NLCS and two World Series
  • May 3 – Alex Kellner, 71, an All-Star pitcher who played for the Athletics, Reds and Cardinals between 1948 and 1959
  • May 19 – Johnny Berardino, 79, infielder for the Browns and Indians who topped 80 RBI in 1940 and 1941; became an actor, best known for the soap opera General Hospital
  • May 26 – Mike Sharperson, 34, All-Star infielder for the Dodgers who batted .300 in 1992
  • June 16 – Mel Allen, 83, legendary broadcaster who spent over 35 years with the Yankees, also on national broadcasts and This Week in Baseball
  • July 8 – Jim Busby, 69, All-Star center fielder for six teams who batted .312 for 1953 Senators, led AL in putouts twice; later a coach
  • August 4 – Willard Brown, 81, All-Star outfielder of the Negro Leagues who became the first black player to hit a home run in the American League
  • September 4 – Babe Dahlgren, 84, All-Star first baseman best remembered for replacing Lou Gehrig to end his 2,130 consecutive games streak, hitting a home run in the game
  • September 6 – Barney McCosky, 79, outfielder for the Tigers and Athletics who batted .312 lifetime, led AL in hits in 1940
  • October 4 – Joe Hoerner, 59, All-Star reliever for seven teams who averaged 15 saves for 1966–69 Cardinals
  • October 29 – Ewell Blackwell, 74, six-time All-Star pitcher for the Cincinnati Reds who came within two outs of throwing consecutive no-hitters in 1947; led NL in wins and strikeouts that season
  • November 11 – Lum Harris, 81, manager who won 1969 NL West title with the Braves; previously a pitcher for the Athletics, and Houston manager
  • December 27 – Gene Brabender, 55, pitcher who led the Seattle Pilots with 13 wins in their only season

External links

References

  1. ^ NBC did not broadcast any regular season games. They only broadcast the All-Star Game, three divisional playoff games in prime time, and the ALCS.
  1. ^ https://www.baseball-reference.com/leagues/MLB/1987-standard-batting.shtml
  2. ^ https://www.baseball-reference.com/leagues/MLB/1996-standard-batting.shtml
  3. ^ https://www.baseball-reference.com/leagues/MLB/1996-standard-pitching.shtml
  4. ^ "Albert Belle, Photographer Settle Thrown-ball Lawsuit". articles.chicagotribune.com. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
1996 American League Championship Series

The 1996 American League Championship Series (ALCS), the second round of the 1996 American League playoffs, matched the East Division champion New York Yankees against the Wild Card team, the Baltimore Orioles. The Yankees had the home field advantage in the series because they had won their division and the Orioles were the Wild Card team.

1996 American League Division Series

The 1996 American League Division Series (ALDS), the opening round of the 1996 American League playoffs, began on Tuesday, October 1, and ended on Saturday, October 5, with the champions of the three AL divisions—along with a "wild card" team—participating in two best-of-five series. The teams were:

(1) Cleveland Indians (Central Division champion, 99–62) vs. (4) Baltimore Orioles (Wild Card, 88–74): Orioles win series, 3–1.

(2) Texas Rangers (Western Division champion, 90–72) vs. (3) New York Yankees (Eastern Division champion, 92–70): Yankees win series, 3–1.The higher seed (in parentheses) had the home field advantage, which was not tied to playing record but was predetermined—a highly unpopular arrangement which was discontinued after the 1997 playoffs. Also, the team with home field "advantage" was required to play the first two games on the road, with potentially the last three at home, in order to reduce travel. Had the 1996 ALDS been played under the 1998-2011 arrangement, then Cleveland (1) would have still faced off against Baltimore (4) and New York (2) would have likewise still faced off against Texas (3) but would also have had home field advantage. Under the format adopted in 2012, which removed the prohibition against teams from the same division meeting in the Division Series, the matchups also would have been Cleveland-Baltimore and New York-Texas, with the Yankees having home field advantage.

The Baltimore Orioles and New York Yankees went on to meet in the AL Championship Series (ALCS). The Yankees became the American League champion, and defeated the of National League champion Atlanta Braves in the 1996 World Series.

1996 Boston Red Sox season

The 1996 Boston Red Sox season was the 96th season in the franchise's Major League Baseball history. The Red Sox finished third in the American League East with a record of 85 wins and 77 losses, seven games behind the New York Yankees.

1996 Chicago Cubs season

The 1996 Chicago Cubs season was the 125th season of the Chicago Cubs franchise, the 121st in the National League and the 81st at Wrigley Field. The Cubs finished fourth in the National League Central with a record of 76–86.

1996 Chicago White Sox season

The 1996 Chicago White Sox season was the White Sox's 97th season. They finished with a record 85-77, good enough for 2nd place in the American League Central, 14.5 games behind the 1st place Cleveland Indians.

1996 Cincinnati Reds season

The Cincinnati Reds' 1996 season consisted of the Cincinnati Reds attempting to win the National League Central.

1996 Cleveland Indians season

For the second consecutive season, the Indians had the best record in Major League Baseball. This was the first time in franchise history that the Indians had accomplished that feat.

1996 Kansas City Royals season

The 1996 Kansas City Royals season was a season in American baseball. It involved the Royals finishing 5th in the American League Central with a record of 75 wins and 86 losses.

1996 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

The 1996 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the 67th playing of the midsummer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 9, 1996, at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, the home of the Philadelphia Phillies of the National League. This marked the fifteenth and final all star game appearance of Ozzie Smith, who retired after the 1996 season. Smith entered the game in the top of the sixth inning. His first at-bat was greeted by chants of "Oz-zie, Oz-zie" from the Philadelphia crowd. Iron Man Cal Ripken, Jr., who was in the midst of his record-breaking run of consecutive games played, broke his nose during the pre-game AL team picture. However, he was ready to go at game time and started at SS.

During the pregame ceremonies, Kelsey Grammer of Frasier sang the American National Anthem and Canadian singer Sarah McLachlan sang the Canadian National Anthem. U.S. Congressman Jim Bunning (who was elected to the baseball hall-of-fame in 1996) joined other Phillies' hall of fame alumni Mike Schmidt, Steve Carlton, Richie Ashburn and Robin Roberts in tossing the ceremonial first pitches.

Joe Carter, the Toronto Blue Jays representative to the All-Star Game, received boos from the crowd for his home run that ended the 1993 World Series.The game resulted in the National League defeating the American League 6–0. The National League would not win another All-Star Game until 2010.

Then-Chairman of the Executive Committee Bud Selig presented the All-Star Game MVP Award to Mike Piazza. Bobby Brown had presented the MVP Award in 1993, while National League President Len Coleman had presented the award in 1994 and 1995. After presenting the MVP Award at the 1998 Major League Baseball All-Star Game, Selig was officially named Commissioner of Baseball.

This is the only All-Star Game in which not a single pitcher walked a batter; appropriately, Braves closer Mark Wohlers was the final pitcher of the game.

Veterans Stadium also held the "distinction" of being the most recent host stadium to be closed down, a distinction it lost after Yankee Stadium closed at the conclusion of the 2008 season. This is also, as of the end of the 2017 MLB season, the last MLB All-Star Game to be played on artificial turf (there are now only two MLB stadiums with artificial turf, but both are of the next-generation variety).

1996 Major League Baseball draft

The 1996 First-Year Player Draft, Major League Baseball's annual amateur draft of high school and college baseball players, was held on June 4 and 5, 1996. A total of 1740 players were drafted over the course of 100 rounds.

This is the only draft to last 100 rounds. The last player taken was outfielder Aron Amundson, drafted by the New York Yankees in the 100th round.

This draft is also notable because a record four first-round draft picks were not offered contracts by the teams that drafted them and subsequently became free agents.

1996 National League Championship Series

The 1996 National League Championship Series (NLCS) matched the East Division champion Atlanta Braves and the Central Division champion St. Louis Cardinals. It was the second NLCS meeting of the two teams and first since 1982. The Braves won in seven games, becoming the eighth team in baseball history to win a best-of-seven postseason series after being down 3–1, and first to overcome such a deficit in the NLCS. They outscored the Cardinals, 32–1, over the final three games. Also, Bobby Cox became the only manager to be on both the winning and losing end of such a comeback in postseason history, having previously blown the 1985 American League Championship Series with the Toronto Blue Jays against the Kansas City Royals.

The Braves would go on to lose to the New York Yankees in the World Series in six games.

1996 National League Division Series

The 1996 National League Division Series (NLDS), the opening round of the 1996 National League playoffs, began on Tuesday, October 1, and ended on Saturday, October 5, with the champions of the three NL divisions—along with a "wild card" team—participating in two best-of-five series. The teams were:

(1) Atlanta Braves (Eastern Division champion, 96–66) vs. (4) Los Angeles Dodgers (Wild Card, 90–72): Braves won series, 3–0.

(2) San Diego Padres (Western Division champion, 91–71) vs. (3) St. Louis Cardinals (Central Division champion, 88–74): Cardinals won series, 3–0.The higher seed (in parentheses) had the home field advantage, which was not tied to playing record but was predetermined—a highly unpopular arrangement which was discontinued after the 1997 playoffs. Also, the team with home field "advantage" was required to play the first two games on the road, with potentially the last three at home, in order to reduce travel. The Padres played the Cardinals, rather than the wild card Dodgers, because the Padres and Dodgers are in the same division. Had the 1996 NLDS been played under the 1998-2011 arrangement, then Atlanta (1) would have still faced off against Los Angeles (St. Louis had a worse record, but would have faced Atlanta because of the mandate of no teams from the same division playing against each other in the Division Series) and San Diego likewise would have still faced off against St. Louis, but the Cardinals would have had home field advantage. Under the 2012-present format, which removed the prohibition against teams from the same division meeting in the Division Series, the matchups still would have been Atlanta-Los Angeles and St. Louis-San Diego, with the Braves and Cardinals having home field advantage.

The St. Louis Cardinals and Atlanta Braves both swept their Division Series, and went on to meet in the NL Championship Series (NLCS). The Braves would rally to win that series four games to three and become the National League champion, but would lose to the American League champion New York Yankees in the 1996 World Series.

1996 New York Mets season

The New York Mets' 1996 season was the 35th regular season for the Mets. They went 71-91 and finished 4th in the NL East. They were managed by Dallas Green and Bobby Valentine. They played home games at Shea Stadium.

1996 Philadelphia Phillies season

The 1996 Philadelphia Phillies season was the 114th season in the history of the franchise. The Phillies finished fifth in the National League East with a record of 67 wins and 95 losses. They also hosted the 1996 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.

1996 Pittsburgh Pirates season

The 1996 Pittsburgh Pirates season was the 115th season of the franchise; the 110th in the National League. This was their 27th season at Three Rivers Stadium. The Pirates finished fifth and last in the National League Central with a record of 73–89.

1996 San Diego Padres season

The 1996 San Diego Padres season was the 28th season in franchise history.

1996 San Francisco Giants season

The 1996 San Francisco Giants season was the Giants' 114th season in Major League Baseball, their 39th season in San Francisco since their move from New York following the 1957 season, and their 37th at 3Com Park at Candlestick Point. The team finished in fourth place in the National League West with a 68-94 record, 23 games behind the San Diego Padres.

1996 Texas Rangers season

The Texas Rangers 1996 season involved the Rangers finishing 1st in the American League west with a record of 90 wins and 72 losses. It would be the first post-season appearance for the Rangers in franchise history.

The Rangers would win their first post-season game at Yankee Stadium against the New York Yankees, but would lose the last three games to lose the division series. The one post-season win would be the club's only post-season success until 2010.

Jeffrey Maier

Jeffrey "Jeff" Maier (born November 15, 1983) is an American baseball fan who received media attention for an incident in which he was involved as a 12-year-old at a baseball game. During Game 1 of the 1996 American League Championship Series between the New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles, Maier deflected a batted ball, hit by Derek Jeter, into the Yankee Stadium stands for what umpires ruled to be a home run, rather than fan interference. His action altered the course of Game 1, as the resulting home run allowed the Yankees to tie the score. They won the game and won the series four games to one en route to winning the World Series.

1996 MLB season by team
Pre-modern era
Modern era
See also

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