1948 in baseball
The following are the baseball events of the year 1948 throughout the world.
Major League Baseball
Awards and honors
MLB statistical leaders
Major league baseball final standings
American League final standings
National League final standings
Negro league baseball final standings
Negro American League final standings
- Birmingham won the first half, Kansas City won the second half.
- Birmingham beat Kansas City 3 games to 1 games in a play-off.
Negro National League final standings
- No standings were published.
- Baltimore won the first half, Washington won the second half.
- July 7 – The Cleveland Indians stun the baseball world by signing Satchel Paige, a veteran Negro League pitcher. At 42, Paige becomes the oldest player to debut in the majors. He would be inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1971.
- July 13 – At Sportsman's Park, home of the St. Louis Browns, the American League defeats the National League, 5-2, in the All-Star Game.
- July 18 – Chicago White Sox left fielder Pat Seerey hits four home runs in a game against the Philadelphia Athletics, to become the fifth Major League player to accomplish the feat. The White Sox win, 12-11, in 11 innings.
- July 24 – Four members of the Duluth Dukes of the Northern League are killed, while 14 are injured, seven critically, in a bus-truck crash near St. Paul, Minnesota. All told, five persons die including the team's manager, George Treadwell; three players, and the driver of the truck. The injured list include Mel McGaha, a future major league manager in the 1960s, and the infielder Elmer Schoendienst, younger brother of the St. Louis Cardinals second baseman Red Schoendienst. The tragedy recalls the 1946 bus crash involving the Spokane Indians baseball team which took the lives of nine players.
- August 12 – In the second game of a doubleheader, the Cleveland Indians rap out 29 hits in a 26-3 win over the St. Louis Browns. The Indians set a Major League record as 14 different players hit safely.
- September 9 – Rex Barney of the Brooklyn Dodgers pitches a 2–0 no-hitter over the New York Giants at the Polo Grounds.
- September 26 – At Braves Field, Boston Braves' Bob Elliott hits a three-run homer, as the Braves beat the New York Giants, 3-2, and clinch the Braves' first N.L. pennant since 1914.
- October 4 – The Cleveland Indians defeat the Boston Red Sox, 8–3, in an American League one-game playoff game after finishing the season tied for first place. The Indians win the pennant and advance to the World Series. The Red Sox defeat disappointed Boston fans who had been rooting the entire season for an All-Boston World Series between the AL Red Sox and the National League Braves. It was the second time an All-Boston World Series had been thwarted as in 1891, when the NL champion Boston Beaneaters refused to meet the American Association champion Boston Reds in a proposed 1891 World Series due to inter-league squabbling over player contracts.
- October 11 – The Cleveland Indians defeat the Boston Braves, 4–3, in Game 6 of the World Series to win their second World Championship title, four games to two. In Game 4, Larry Doby became the first black player to hit a home run in the World Series. The Braves were back in the Series after a 34 year absence. This was also both the first AL pennant and WS Championship for the Indians in 28 years. To date, the Indians have yet to win another World Series.
- October 12 – The New York Yankees hire Casey Stengel to be the manager beginning with the 1949 season.
- November 10 – The Chicago White Sox acquire young left handed pitcher Billy Pierce from the Detroit Tigers in exchange for All-Star catcher Aaron Robinson, in a move that will give them their pitching ace for the next decade. Detroit even sweetens the deal with $10,000. Pierce will win 186 games for the White Sox over the next 13 years, but Robinson will last fewer than three seasons in Detroit.
- November 26 – National League president Ford Frick steps in and pays $350 for funeral services, including the cost of a coffin, for the unclaimed body of Hack Wilson. The former slugger, who had died probably of alcohol abuse a few days earlier in a Baltimore hospital, is identified only as a white male.
- November 30 – Cleveland Indians shortstop/manager Lou Boudreau is selected the American League MVP. Boudreau had almost been traded to the St. Louis Browns earlier in the year, but protests by Indians fans kept him in Cleveland. After the World Series victory, Indians owner Bill Veeck commented: Sometimes the best trades are the ones you never make.
- December 2 – Stan Musial of the St. Louis Cardinals is named National League Most Valuable Player. In one of the best season ever, Musial led the NL in batting average (.376), runs (135), RBI (131), hits (230), doubles (46), triples (18) and slugging pct. (.702). His 39 home runs were one short of Johnny Mize and Ralph Kiner league's leaders.
- January 4 – Biff Schlitzer, 63, pitched from 1908 through 1914 for the Philadelphia Athletics, Boston Red Sox and Buffalo Blues
- January 30 – Herb Pennock, 53, pitcher who won 240 games, third most among AL left-handers, and had two 20-win seasons with the Yankees; general manager of the Phillies since 1943
- February 14 – Mordecai "Three Finger" Brown, 71, pitcher whose loss of two fingers in a childhood accident gave him remarkable movement on pitches, winning 20 games six straight years for the Cubs and posting the lowest career ERA (2.06) in NL history
- March 1 – Rebel Oakes, 64, center fielder for seven seasons, 1909–1915, including two years as player-manager for the Pittsburgh Rebels of the Federal League.
- April 3 – Candy Jim Taylor, 64, third baseman and manager of the Negro Leagues
- April 25 – Bertrum Hunter, 42, Negro league baseball player
- July 27 – Joe Tinker, 68, Hall of Fame shortstop best remembered as part of famed Chicago Cubs infield which led team to 4 pennants between 1906 and 1910
- August 14 – Phil Collins, 46, pitcher for the Chicago Cubs, Philadelphia Phillies and St. Louis Cardinals between 1923 and 1935
- August 16 – Babe Ruth, 53, Hall of Fame right fielder and pitcher who was the greatest star in baseball history, holding records for most home runs in a season (60) and lifetime (714), as well as most career RBI (2,213); lifetime .342 hitter also posted a 94-46 record and 2.28 ERA as a pitcher while playing for seven champions; won 1923 MVP award, at a time when AL rules prohibited winning it more than once
- August 20 – Walter Blair, 64, catcher for the New York Highlanders and later played in the Federal League. Played a total of seven seasons from 1907 to 1915.
- August 29 – Charlie Graham, 70, catcher for the 1906 Boston Red Sox, who later became manager and owner of the PCL San Francisco Seals
- September 3 – Bert Husting, 60, two-star in the 1890s University of Wisconsin teams, later pitched for the Pirates, Brewers, Americans and Athletics from 1900 to 1902
- October 8 – Al Orth, 76, pitcher who won 204 games with Phillies, Senators and Yankees while often batting .300
- October 24 – Jack Thoney, 68, well-traveled outfielder/infielder who played from 1902 through 1911 for the Cleveland Bronchos, Baltimore Orioles, Washington Senators, New York Highlanders and Boston Red Sox
- October 31 – Dick Redding, 58, star pitcher of the Negro Leagues who set numerous strikeout records and pitched several no-hitters
- November 23 – Hack Wilson, 48, center fielder who set NL record for home runs (56) and major league record for RBI (191) in spectacular 1930 season for the Cubs; won four home run titles
- November 30 – Frank Bowerman, 79, catcher and battery-mate for Christy Mathewson on the New York Giants, who also played for the Baltimore Orioles and Pittsburgh Pirates, and later managed the 1909 Boston Doves