2004 in baseball

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The following are the baseball events of the year 2004 throughout the world.

Headline events of the year


Major League Baseball

  • Regular Season Champions
League Eastern Division Champion Central Division Champion Western Division Champion Wild Card Qualifier
American League New York Yankees Minnesota Twins Anaheim Angels Boston Red Sox
National League Atlanta Braves St. Louis Cardinals Los Angeles Dodgers Houston Astros
  • World Series Champion – Boston Red Sox
  • Postseason – October 4 to October 27
  Division Series
League Championship Series
World Series
  1  New York Yankees 3  
3  Minnesota Twins 1  
  1  New York Yankees 3  
American League
  4  Boston Red Sox 4  
2  Anaheim Angels 0
  4  Boston Red Sox 3  
    AL4  Boston Red Sox 4
  NL1  St. Louis Cardinals 0
  1  St. Louis Cardinals 3  
3  Los Angeles Dodgers 1  
  1  St. Louis Cardinals 4
National League
  4  Houston Astros 3  
2  Atlanta Braves 2
  4  Houston Astros 3  

Click on any series score to link to that series' page.
Higher seed has home field advantage during Division Series and League Championship Series.
American League has home field advantage during World Series as a result of American League victory in 2004 All-Star Game.
American/National League is seeded 1-3/2-4 as a result of A/NL regular season champion (New York Yankees)/(St. Louis Cardinals) and A/NL wild card (Boston Red Sox)(Houston Astros) coming from the same division.

Other champions

Awards and honors

Statistical leaders

  American League National League
Type Name Stat Name Stat
AVG Ichiro Suzuki SEA .372 Barry Bonds SFG .362
HR Manny Ramírez BOS 43 Adrián Beltré LAD 48
RBI Miguel Tejada BAL 150 Vinny Castilla COL 131
Wins Curt Schilling BOS 21 Roy Oswalt HOU 20
ERA Johan Santana MIN 2.61 Jake Peavy SDP 2.27
Ks Johan Santana MIN 265 Randy Johnson ARI 290

Notable seasons

  • Barry Bonds of the Giants has another outstanding year. He sets the all-time record for highest on-base percentage at .609, breaking his previous record of .582, set in 2002. He also posts a slugging average of .812, the fourth-highest ever, and also breaks his previous OPS record of 1.381, set in 2002, with a 2004 OPS of 1.422. Bonds also set a record for most walks in a season, with 232. Finally, with 120 intentional walks, he almost doubles his previous record of 68.
  • Adam Dunn's 195 strikeouts break Bobby Bonds' previous record of 189.
  • With 262 hits, Ichiro Suzuki of the Mariners breaks George Sisler's record of 257. Suzuki also sets the record for most singles in a season, with 225.

Major league baseball final standings

  • The asterisk denotes the club that won the wild card for its respective league.








  • October 1 – Ichiro Suzuki surpasses George Sisler's 84-year-old record of 257 hits in a single season. After this game, Ichiro collects 259 hits in the season with two games left; he finishes the season with 262 hits.
  • October 2 – The Anaheim Angels clinch their first AL West Division title in 18 years with a 5-4 victory over the Oakland Athletics. The Angels also earn their first playoff berth since 2002, when they win the World Series as the wild card. The Angels, who trail Oakland by one game four days before, are tied for first place when the three-game series starts, and many expect the race to come down to the last day of the season; but Anaheim ends the suspense with two consecutive victories.
  • October 2 – Steve Finley's walk-off grand slam caps a seven-run rally in the bottom of the ninth inning, and the Los Angeles Dodgers win the NL West Division title by beating the San Francisco Giants 7-3. The Dodgers and the Angels both qualify for the postseason in the same year for the first time ever.
  • October 3
    • The Houston Astros clinch a berth in the playoffs with their 18th consecutive home victory by beating the Colorado Rockies 5-3 to win the NL wild card. Houston wins the final seven games of the regular season and nine of the last 10 to complete an amazing late-season push for the playoffs under manager Phil Garner, who replaces Jimy Williams at the All-Star break. The Astros are a season-worst 56-60 on August 14. Since then, the team compiles a major league-best 36-10.
    • The Montreal Expos conclude their 36-year history by losing to the New York Mets 8-1 at Shea Stadium, the franchise's final game before its move to Washington, D.C. Endy Chávez is the final player to bat for the Expos, grounding out for the game's final out. Ironically, the Expos had also played their very first game at Shea Stadium, defeating the Mets 11-10 on April 8, 1969.
  • October 8 – At Fenway Park, David Ortiz homers in the 10th inning to send the Boston Red Sox to their second consecutive ALCS, completing a three-game sweep of the Anaheim Angels with an 8-6 victory.
  • October 9 – At Minnesota, the New York Yankees rally for four runs to tie the game in the eighth, then push across the winning run in the 11th on a wild pitch. The 6-5 win against the Minnesota Twins gives them a 3-1 AL Division Series victory and sends them back to Yankee Stadium, where they open against the Boston Red Sox in the best-of-seven ALCS.
  • October 10 – The St. Louis Cardinals advance to the NLCS for the third time in five years, beating the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-2 to win their first-round playoff 3-1.
  • October 11 – The Houston Astros post a 12-3 triumph over the Atlanta Braves in the decisive fifth game of the NLDS. Winning a postseason series for the first time in the 43-year history of the franchise, the Astros earn a spot in the best-of-seven NLCS against the St. Louis Cardinals.
  • October 20 – At Yankee Stadium, the Boston Red Sox pull off one of the greatest comebacks ever, beating the New York Yankees four straight times after losing the first three games of the ALCS.
  • October 21 – At home, the St. Louis Cardinals advance to the 2004 World Series after a Game 7 victory over the Houston Astros.
  • October 24 – The Red Sox win 6-2 at Fenway Park behind Curt Schilling, to take the Series lead 2-0. Schilling goes 6 innings, giving up only 1 run (not earned) and only 4 hits, while striking out 4.
  • October 26 – Takashi Ishii goes six strong innings and Alex Cabrera hits a towering two-run homer as the Seibu Lions defeat the Chunichi Dragons 7-2 in Game 7 of the Japan Series to win their first championship since 1992. The ball bounces off the glass-enclosed private boxes above the left field seats. It is Cabrera's third home run of the Series. The former Arizona Diamondbacks player also has a grand slam and a two-run homer in Game 3. For his part, Ishii is selected the Series Most Valuable Player.
  • October 27 – The Boston Red Sox complete a four-game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals to win the World Series for the first time since 1918.
  • November – The independent Atlantic League of Professional Baseball announces former Major Leaguer Tom Herr as the manager of the Lancaster Barnstormers.
  • November 22 – The recently relocated Washington, D.C. National League franchise announces its new name, logo and colors. Using the official original name of the district's team which uses the nickname the Senators from 1901 to 1972, the club clad in red, white, blue and gold is known as the Nationals.
  • November 26 – Vladimir Guerrero (.337 BA, 39 HR, 126 RBI) wins the American League MVP Award, receiving 21 of the 28 first-place votes. The former Montreal Expos outfielder signs as a free agent with the Anaheim Angels, after the New York Mets refuse to guarantee his salary based on advice from their medical staff.




  • January 2 – Lynn Cartwright, 76, actress who performed as the older version of Geena Davis' character in the 1992 film A League of Their Own
  • January 2 – Paul Hopkins, 99, oldest living major leaguer, and the pitcher who gave up Babe Ruth's record-tying 59th home run in 1927
  • January 3 – Leon Wagner, 69, All-Star left fielder for the Angels and Indians who had two seasons of 30 HR and 100 RBI; MVP of the 1962 All-Star game
  • January 5 – Tug McGraw, 59, All-Star relief pitcher for the Mets and Phillies who held the NL's career saves record for left-handers (180) until 1990, and was on the mound when the Phillies won their first World Series title in 1980
  • January 13 – Mike Goliat, 82, second baseman on the Phillies' 1950 "Whiz Kids"
  • January 15 – Gus Suhr, 98, All-Star first baseman for the Pirates who set NL record of 822 consecutive games played, broken by Stan Musial in 1957
  • January 17 – Harry Brecheen, 89, All-Star pitcher for the Cardinals who was 3-0 with a 0.45 ERA in the 1946 World Series, clinching the Series with a Game 7 relief win; led NL in ERA and strikeouts in 1948
  • January 20 – Marie Wegman, 78, All-Star infielder/outfielder in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
  • January 21 – Johnny Blatnik, 82, outfielder who played from 1948 to 1950 for the Phillies and Cardinals


  • February 10 – Hub Kittle, 86, pitching coach for the 1982 World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals; also a minor league manager and executive
  • February 15 – Lawrence Ritter, 81, author of numerous books on baseball, including The Glory of Their Times
  • February 16 – Charlie Fox, 82, manager who led Giants to the 1971 NL West title, and later managed the Expos and Cubs
  • February 22 – Andy Seminick, 83, All-Star catcher who was the last surviving everyday player for the Phillies' 1950 "Whiz Kids"


  • March 2 – Marge Schott, 75, owner of the Cincinnati Reds from 1984 to 1999 who often provoked controversy with her social views
  • March 6 – John Henry Williams, 35, son of Hall of Famer Ted Williams who began a brief minor league career at age 33
  • March 18 – Gene Bearden, 83, pitcher who employed the knuckleball in a remarkable 1948 rookie season for the Indians, winning 20 games, leading the AL in ERA and earning a save in the final World Series game
  • March 27 – Bob Cremins, 98, pitcher who made four relief appearances for the 1927 Boston Red Sox
  • March 27 – Alice Haylett, 80, AAGPBL All-Star pitcher
  • March 29 – Al Cuccinello, 89, reserve second baseman for the 1935 Giants who hit a home run in his first game at the Polo Grounds


  • April 4 – George Bamberger, 80, manager of the Brewers (twice) and Mets, also Orioles' pitching coach; won 213 games as a minor league pitcher, mainly in Pacific Coast League
  • April 6 – Lou Berberet, 74, catcher for four AL teams who posted a perfect fielding average for the 1957 Senators
  • April 6 – Ken Johnson, 81, pitcher who threw a one-hitter for the Cardinals in his first major league start (1947)


  • May 2 – Moe Burtschy, 82, relief pitcher for the Philadelphia & Kansas City Athletics from 1950 to 1956
  • May 3 – Darrell Johnson, 75, manager of the Red Sox' 1975 AL champions who later became the Seattle Mariners' first manager
  • May 17 – Buster Narum, 63, pitcher who won 14 games for the 1964–67 Senators after homering in his first career at bat with the Orioles


  • June 3 – Joe Cleary, 85, pitcher, the last native of Ireland to play in a major league game.
  • June 4 – Wilmer Fields, 81, pitcher/outfielder who was a household name in the Negro Leagues and other baseball circuits between the 1940s and 1950s, winning seven MVP Awards throughout the course of his distinguished career.
  • June 8 – Mack Jones, 65, outfielder for three NL teams who had the first major league home run hit in Canada.
  • June 16 – George Hausmann, 88, second baseman for the New York Giants from 1944 to 1945, who was suspended for jumping to the outlaw Mexican League.


  • July 9 – Tony Lupien, 87, first baseman for three teams who later managed in the minor leagues and coached at Dartmouth for 21 years
  • July 13 – Betty Luna, 77, All-American Girls Professional Baseball League pitcher who posted a 74-70 record with a 2.12 ERA and hurled two no-hitters
  • July 26 – Rubén Gómez, 77, pitcher for the Giants who in 1954 became the first Puerto Rican to win a World Series game


  • August 3 – Bob Murphy, 79, broadcaster for the Mets for 40 years, previously with the Red Sox and Orioles
  • August 11 – Joe Falls, 76, sportswriter for various Detroit newspapers since 1953, also a Sporting News columnist; winner of the J.G. Taylor Spink Award
  • August 22 – Louella Daetweiler, 86, catcher for the Rockford Peaches of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
  • August 23 – Hank Borowy, 88, All-Star pitcher who was the last hurler to get four decisions in a World Series, going 2-2 with the 1945 Cubs against Detroit
  • August 27 – Willie Crawford, 57, outfielder, primarily for the Dodgers, who hit .304 for the 1976 Cardinals


  • September 7 – Bob Boyd, 84, first baseman who was the first black player to sign with the White Sox, and the first 20th-century Oriole to hit over .300
  • September 7 – Hal Reniff, 66, relief pitcher for the Yankees who saved 18 games in 1963
  • September 9 – Rose Gacioch, 89, an outstanding outfielder and pitcher in the heyday of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
  • September 15 – Nalda Bird, 77, All-American Girls Professional Baseball League pitcher, who hurled complete game shutouts in both games of a doubleheader (1945), to join Ed Reulbach (National League, 1908) and Bill Foster (Negro Leagues, 1926) as the only pitchers ever to have achieved the feat in baseball history


  • October 3 – John Cerutti, 44, pitcher and broadcast announcer for the Blue Jays who won 11 games for the 1989 division champions
  • October 10 – Ken Caminiti, 41, All-Star third baseman who won the NL's 1996 MVP award and three Gold Gloves; made news in 2002 with admission of steroid use and allegations of their prevalence in major leagues
  • October 13 – Mike Blyzka, 75, pitcher for the St. Louis Browns and Baltimore Orioles from 1953 to 1954, and one of 17 players involved in the largest transaction in major league history
  • October 17 – Ray Boone, 81, All-Star infielder and patriarch of three-generation major league family which included son Bob and grandsons Bret and Aaron
  • October 20 – Chuck Hiller, 70, second baseman for four NL teams who was that league's first player to hit a grand slam in the World Series
  • October 21 – Jim Bucher, 93, infielder/outfielder for the Brooklyn Dodgers, St. Louis Cardinals and Boston Red Sox between 1934 and 1945
  • October 24 – Bethany Goldsmith, 77, All-American Girls Professional Baseball League pitcher
  • October 26 – Bobby Ávila, 80, Mexican All-Star second baseman for the Indians who won the AL batting title in 1954, the first Hispanic player to do so; became president of the Mexican League


  • November 14 – Jesse Gonder, 68, catcher and pinch-hitter for five teams, most notably the 1963–65 Mets; won a batting title in Pacific Coast League
  • November 19 – Brian Traxler, 37, former first baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers
  • November 26 – Tom Haller, 67, All-Star catcher for the Giants and Dodgers, later Giants' general manager from 1981 to 1986; brother Bill was longtime AL umpire
  • November 28 – Connie Johnson, 81, All-Star pitcher for the Negro Leagues' Kansas City Monarchs, later with the White Sox and Orioles
  • November 29 – Harry Danning, 93, All-Star catcher for the New York Giants who batted .300 three times


  • December 10 – Ed Sudol, 84, National League umpire from 1957 to 1977 who worked three World Series and was behind the plate for Jim Bunning's perfect game (1964) and three Mets games of 23 or more innings
  • December 13 – Andre Rodgers, 70, shortstop for the Giants, Cubs and Pirates who was the first Bahamian major leaguer; former cricket player learned baseball at a Giants tryout
  • December 14 – Danny Doyle, 87, scout for the Red Sox since 1949 who signed Roger Clemens; briefly a catcher for the 1943 team
  • December 14 – Rod Kanehl, 70, second baseman and outfielder for the Mets who hit the team's first grand slam
  • December 15 – Larry Ponza, 86, pitching machine innovator
  • December 16 – Ted Abernathy, 71, relief pitcher who led the NL in saves in 1965 and 1967
  • December 16 – Bobby Mattick, 89, longtime scout who managed the 1980–81 Blue Jays; previously a shortstop for the Cubs and Reds
  • December 22 – Doug Ault, 54, first baseman for the Blue Jays who hit two home runs in the franchise's first game
  • December 23 – Wilmer Harris, 80, pitcher for the Negro Leagues' Philadelphia Stars
  • December 24 – Johnny Oates, 58, manager who led the Rangers to their only three playoff appearances in 1996, '98 and '99; also managed Orioles, and was catcher with five teams
  • December 26 – Eddie Layton, 79, organist for the New York Yankees from 1967 to 2003
  • December 29 – Ken Burkhart, 89, National League umpire from 1957 to 1973 who worked in three World Series; a pitcher who won 18 games for the 1945 Cardinals, he was the last surviving umpire who played in the majors
  • December 29 – Gus Niarhos, 84, catcher for four teams, most notably the Yankees; later a minor league manager
  • December 31 – Joe Durso, 80, sportswriter for The New York Times since 1950, and author of several baseball books