2016 Major League Baseball season

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2016 MLB season
League Major League Baseball
Sport Baseball
Duration April 3, 2016 – October 2, 2016
Number of games 162
Number of teams 30
Regular season
League Postseason
World Series
MLB seasons

The 2016 Major League Baseball season began on April 3, 2016 with a Sunday afternoon matchup between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Pittsburgh Pirates, the two teams with the best regular season records in 2015, at PNC Park in Pittsburgh. The regular season is scheduled to end on Sunday, October 2, 2016.

The Major League Baseball All-Star Game's 87th edition will be held on July 12 at Petco Park in San Diego, California, home of the San Diego Padres. The winning league will get home-field advantage in the World Series.

The 2016 Civil Rights Game will be played at a date and at a stadium to be announced.

Standings

Division

American League National League
American League East W L Pct. GB Home Road
Boston Red Sox 93 69 0.574 47–34 46–35
Baltimore Orioles 89 73 0.549 4 50–31 39–42
Toronto Blue Jays 89 73 0.549 4 46–35 43–38
New York Yankees 84 78 0.519 9 48–33 36–45
Tampa Bay Rays 68 94 0.420 25 36–45 32–49


American League Central W L Pct. GB Home Road
Cleveland Indians 94 67 0.584 53–28 41–39
Detroit Tigers 86 75 0.534 8 45–35 41–40
Kansas City Royals 81 81 0.500 13½ 47–34 34–47
Chicago White Sox 78 84 0.481 16½ 45–36 33–48
Minnesota Twins 59 103 0.364 35½ 30–51 29–52


American League West W L Pct. GB Home Road
Texas Rangers 95 67 0.586 53–28 42–39
Seattle Mariners 86 76 0.531 9 44–37 42–39
Houston Astros 84 78 0.519 11 43–38 41–40
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 74 88 0.457 21 40–41 34–47
Oakland Athletics 69 93 0.426 26 34–47 35–46


National League East W L Pct. GB Home Road
Washington Nationals 95 67 0.586 50–31 45–36
New York Mets 87 75 0.537 8 44–37 43–38
Miami Marlins 79 82 0.491 15½ 40–40 39–42
Philadelphia Phillies 71 91 0.438 24 37–44 34–47
Atlanta Braves 68 93 0.422 26½ 31–50 37–43


National League Central W L Pct. GB Home Road
Chicago Cubs 103 58 0.640 57–24 46–34
St. Louis Cardinals 86 76 0.531 17½ 38–43 48–33
Pittsburgh Pirates 78 83 0.484 25 38–42 40–41
Milwaukee Brewers 73 89 0.451 30½ 41–40 32–49
Cincinnati Reds 68 94 0.420 35½ 38–43 30–51


National League West W L Pct. GB Home Road
Los Angeles Dodgers 91 71 0.562 53–28 38–43
San Francisco Giants 87 75 0.537 4 45–36 42–39
Colorado Rockies 75 87 0.463 16 42–39 33–48
Arizona Diamondbacks 69 93 0.426 22 33–48 36–45
San Diego Padres 68 94 0.420 23 39–42 29–52


Schedule

As was the case in 2015, teams are scheduled to play 19 games against each division opponent for a total of 76 games, and six or seven games against each team from the other two divisions in its league for a total of 66 games.

All teams are scheduled to play 20 interleague games throughout the season. For 2016, the interleague matchups will be AL East vs. NL West, AL Central vs. NL East, and AL West vs. NL Central.

On July 3, 2016, the Atlanta Braves and Miami Marlins will play a special neutral-site game on a newly constructed field in Fort Bragg, North Carolina in observance of the Independence Day long weekend. It will be the first professional, regular-season sporting event held on an active military installation.[1] A two-game series between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Miami Marlins were also scheduled for Hiram Bithorn Stadium in Puerto Rico in May 2016; however, on May 6, 2016, Major League Baseball announced that the Puerto Rico games would be postponed due to the ongoing Zika virus epidemic, and moved back to Marlins Park.[2]

Rule changes

In February 2016, Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association agreed to two rule changes.

  • Rule 6.01(j) delineates criteria for a legal slide while trying to break up a double play, which is defined as making contact with the ground before reaching the base, being able to and attempting to reach the base with a hand or foot, being able to and attempting to remain on the base at the completion of the slide (except at home plate) and not changing his path for the purpose of initiating contact with a fielder. This is intended to protect infielders while still allowing for aggressive baserunning.
  • The second rule change limits managers and coaches visits to the mound to 30 seconds and shortens between innings break times by 30 seconds to match television commercial breaks.[3]

Managerial changes

General managers

Offseason

Team Former GM New GM Reason for leaving Story/Accomplishments
Cincinnati Reds Walt Jocketty Dick Williams Promoted On November 4, 2015 Dick Williams was promoted to General Manager, replacing Walt Jocketty, who will stay on as director of operations for at least one more year.[4]
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Bill Stoneman Billy Eppler Interim On October 4, 2015, the night after the regular season ended in a loss to the Rangers, the Angels hired Billy Eppler as their new permanent general manager, replacing Bill Stoneman, who was the interim GM after Jerry Dipoto who resigned earlier in the season.[5]
Milwaukee Brewers Doug Melvin David Stearns Resigned On September 21, 2015, David Stearns replaced Doug Melvin who resigned from the club as general manager. He started his new job on October 5.[6]
Philadelphia Phillies Ruben Amaro, Jr. Matt Klentak Fired On October 24, 2015, Matt Klentak was hired as the new permanent general manager to replace interim GM Scott Proefrock, who was a temporary replacement for Ruben Amaro Jr., who was fired on September 10.[7]
Oakland Athletics Billy Beane David Forst Promoted On October 5, 2015, General Manager Billy Beane was promoted to executive general manager. David Forst was promoted as the new general manager.[8]
Seattle Mariners Jeff Kingston Jerry Dipoto Interim On September 28, 2015, Jerry Dipoto was named the new permanent general manager of the Mariners, replacing interim GM Jeff Kingston, who replaced Jack Zduriencik.[9]
Toronto Blue Jays Alex Anthopoulos Ross Atkins Resigned Anthopoulos resigned on October 29, 2015, after six seasons as the general manager of the Blue Jays.[10] Ross Atkins was named new GM days later.
Miami Marlins Dan Jennings Michael Hill Fired Jennings was fired on October 29, 2015, as general manager of the Marlins. Michael Hill was named as his replacement.[11]

Field managers

Offseason

Team Former manager Interim manager Reason for leaving New manager Story/Accomplishments
Washington Nationals Matt Williams None Fired Dusty Baker Matt Williams was fired on October 5, 2015, after two seasons with the team. He guided them to the division title in 2014 before losing to the world champion San Francisco Giants. He finished with a 179–145 record.[12] On November 3, 2015, the Nationals announced that Dusty Baker will be their new manager for the 2016 season.[13]
San Diego Padres Bud Black Pat Murphy Interim tag not removed Andy Green Pat Murphy was named interim manager on June 16, 2015, after Bud Black was fired. He finished the 2015 season with a record of 42–53.[14] On October 29, 2015, Andy Green was named the new permanent manager of the Padres.[15]
Miami Marlins Mike Redmond Dan Jennings Fired Don Mattingly Jennings made the unusual move from GM to manager when the Marlins fired Mike Redmond in May after a 16–22 start. The change failed to spark a turnaround, and the injury-riddled Marlins finished at 71–91, their sixth consecutive losing season. Jennings returned as GM[16] and was subsequently fired from that role.[11] On October 29, 2015, Don Mattingly was named the new manager.[17]
Seattle Mariners Lloyd McClendon None Fired Scott Servais McClendon compiled records of 87–75 in 2014 and 76–86 in 2015. On October 9, 2015, it was reported that new Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto wished to hire a new manager, rather than retain McClendon from the previous GM, Jack Zduriencik.[18] On October 23, 2015, Scott Servais was the hired as the team's new manager.[19]
Los Angeles Dodgers Don Mattingly None Mutual Decision Dave Roberts Don Mattingly and the Dodgers parted ways on October 22 after five seasons together. The Dodgers had won their third straight NL West Championship, marking the first time in franchise history that they made the playoffs three years in a row. Their season ended when they lost to the New York Mets in the Division Series. Mattingly finished with a 446–363 record.[20] On November 23, 2015, Dave Roberts was named the Los Angeles Dodgers new manager.[21]

In-season

Date Team Former manager Interim manager Reason for leaving New manager Story/accomplishments
May 17 Atlanta Braves Fredi González Brian Snitker Fired N/A González was fired after starting the season with a 9–28 record, which was the worst record in baseball at the time. González in six-plus seasons finished with a 434–413 record.[22][23]

League leaders

American League

Hitting leaders

Stat Player Total
AVG José Altuve (HOU) .338
HR Mark Trumbo (BAL) 47
RBI Edwin Encarnacion/David Ortiz (TOR/BOS) 127
R Mike Trout (LAA) 123
H Jose Altuve (HOU) 216
SB Rajai Davis (CLE) 43

Pitching leaders

Stat Player Total
W Rick Porcello (BOS) 22
L Chris Archer (TAM) 19
ERA Aaron Sanchez (TOR) 3.00
K Justin Verlander (DET) 254
IP David Price (BOS) 230.0
SV Zach Britton (BAL) 47

National League

Hitting leaders

Stat Player Total
AVG DJ LeMahieu (COL) .348
HR Nolan Arenado (COL)/ Chris Carter(MIL) 41
RBI Nolan Arenado (COL) 133
R Kris Bryant (CHI) 38
H Jean Segura (ARZ) 203
SB Jonathan Villar (MIL) 62

Pitching leaders

Stat Player Total
W Max Scherzer (WAS) 20
L Jimmy Nelson (MIL) 16
ERA Kyle Hendricks (CHC) 2.13
K Max Scherzer (WAS) 284
IP Max Scherzer (WAS) 228.1
SV Jeurys Familia (NYM) 51

Milestones

Batters

  • Trevor Story (COL):
    • Became the sixth player in Major League history to hit two home runs in his debut, following Charlie Reilly, Bob Nieman, Bert Campaneris, Mark Quinn and J.P. Arencibia. He also became the first National League player to hit two home runs in his debut, and he became the first player to hit two homers in his debut on Opening Day.[24]
    • With a home run in his next game, Story joined the Cardinals' Joe Cunningham in 1954 as the only players in modern history (since 1900) with three home runs in his first two career games.[25]
    • With another home run in his third consecutive game, Story became the first player in Major League history to hit a home run in each of his first three big-league games. He is also the first player in Major League history to hit a home run for each of his first four hits.[26]
    • In his fourth career game, Story hit two more home runs making him the first player in Major League history to hit a home run in each of his first four big-league games. Story also became the fifth Major League player since 1900 to homer in each of his team's first four games of a season, joining Chris Davis, Nelson Cruz, Mark McGwire and Willie Mays.[27]
    • Hit his seventh home run of the season in his sixth career big-league game setting the record for most home runs through his first six Major League contests.[28]
    • With his ninth home run of April, on April 27 against Pittsburgh Pirates left-hander Jon Niese, Story set a National League rookie record for home runs in April by breaking the record set in 2001 by Albert Pujols.[29]
  • Victor Martinez (DET):
    • Became the first player in modern Major League history to hit a pinch-hit home run in his team's first two regular-season games after hitting a home run on April 6 against the Miami Marlins.[30]
    • Recorded his 1,000th career RBI on a two-out single off Ian Kennedy of the Kansas City Royals on April 21. He became the 280th player and the fifth Venezuelan-born to reach this mark.[31]
  • Bartolo Colón (NYM):
    • The pitcher hit his first career home run in the second inning against the San Diego Padres on May 7. At age 42 years, 349 days, Colón became the oldest player in MLB history to hit his first career homer.[34] The previous oldest player to do so was Randy Johnson, at age 40 years, 9 days.[35]
  • David Ortiz (BOS):
    • Recorded his 600th career double in the 11th inning against the Houston Astros on May 14. He became the 15th player to reach this mark. Ortiz also became the third player in Major League history to record at least 500 home runs and 600 doubles joining Hank Aaron and Barry Bonds.[36]

Pitchers

No-hitters

  • Jake Arrieta (CHC):
    • Threw his second career no-hitter by defeating the Cincinnati Reds 16–0 on April 21. Arrieta walked four and struck out six as he became the fourth reigning Cy Young winner (joining Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson, and Clayton Kershaw), to throw a no-hitter the following season. Arrieta threw 119 pitches, 71 of which were strikes. The no-hitter was historically notable for some other reasons:[41]
      • The Cubs' 16 runs were the most scored by the winning team in any no-hitter in baseball's modern era (post-1900). The only no-hitter in which more runs were scored was in 1884, when the Buffalo Bisons defeated the Detroit Wolverines 18–0 behind Pud Galvin's no-hitter.
      • Arrieta became the first pitcher to go unbeaten in the regular season between no-hitters since Johnny Vander Meer, who threw consecutive no-hitters in 1938.

Other pitching accomplishments

Miscellaneous

  • The Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the San Diego Padres 15–0 on Opening Day, making this the largest shutout victory on Opening Day in Major League history.[52]
  • The San Diego Padres became the first team in Major League history to be shut out in three consecutive games to open a season. San Diego lost to Los Angeles by the scores of 15–0, 3–0 and 7–0, respectively. The St. Louis Browns were the last team to have had a worse start, going scoreless in the first 26 innings in 1943.[53]
  • The Cincinnati Reds' bullpen set a record by allowing a run in 23 consecutive games from April 10 to May 5. The previous record had been 20, set by the 2013 Colorado Rockies.[54]

Awards and honors

Monthly Awards

Uniforms

Wholesale changes

The Arizona Diamondbacks unveiled their new uniform concept for 2016 on December 3, 2015.

The San Diego Padres introduced new uniforms with a blue and yellow color scheme.

Anniversaries and special events

The following teams will wear commemorative patches for special occasions:

Team Special occasion
All teams "Play Ball" initiative in cooperation with USA Baseball (May 14–15)
Arizona Diamondbacks In memory of Joe Garagiola
Atlanta Braves In memory of former coach Bobby Dews
Final Season at Turner Field
Chicago Cubs 100th Anniversary at Wrigley Field
Chicago White Sox In memory of Part-Owner Eddie Einhorn[55]
Cincinnati Reds In memory of former clubhouse manager Bernie Stowe
Kansas City Royals 2015 World Series Championship
New York Yankees Number 8 patch in memory of Yogi Berra
Oakland Athletics In memory of Dave Henderson (April 4)
In memory of Tony Phillips (April 4)
San Diego Padres 2016 All-Star Game
San Francisco Giants In memory of Monte Irvin
In memory of Jim Davenport
Toronto Blue Jays 40th Season of the franchise

Other changes

The Milwaukee Brewers added a new alternate uniform with modern colors and a retro design.

The Minnesota Twins added a red alternate to their uniform lineup. It features the TC logo on the chest. Although the Twins announced they would be worn on Fridays, they wore the alternate on April 25, a Monday.

The Philadelphia Phillies added a red alternate that they will wear on mid-week home matinee games.

Throwbacks

The Pirates will wear yellow 1979 throwbacks on home Sunday games, replacing the 1971 throwbacks.

The Mets will wear 1986 throwbacks on Sunday home games throughout the season to mark the 30th anniversary of their 1986 World Series title. They also wore them on May 27 and 28.

The Braves and Royals wore Negro Leagues throwbacks on May 15. The Braves wore the uniforms of the Atlanta Black Crackers, and the Royals wore the uniforms of the Kansas City Monarchs.

The Indians will wear 1976 throwbacks on June 4.

The Reds will wear 1976 throwbacks on June 24 to mark the 40th anniversary of their 1976 World Series title.

The Cubs will wear 1916 throwbacks on July 6 to mark the 100th anniversary of the Cubs playing at Wrigley Field.

The Brewers will wear 1990s throwbacks on July 30.

The Padres will wear 1998 throwbacks on August 6.

The Diamondbacks will wear their 1998-2006 throwbacks on Thursday home games.

Other uniforms

The Royals wore uniforms with a golden "Royals" script and caps with a golden KC on April 3 and 5 to mark their winning the 2015 World Series. The Royals then announced they would wear the uniforms on Friday nights for the remainder of the season.

Players, coaches, and umpires at all games wore #42 on April 15, the 69th Anniversary of Jackie Robinson's debut in the majors.

Umpires wore a "EA" patch on the left sleeves honoring umpire Emmett Ashford on April 11 for breaking the color barrier for umpires.

On April 18 (Patriots' Day), the Boston Red Sox wore home white jerseys with "BOSTON" written on the front to mark the three year anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombings. The uniform also sported the 2013 navy-blue circular patch with a white border on the left shoulder saying "B Strong" (with the red B in the classic font featured on the Red Sox's caps).

The Red Sox wore a patch on April 21 to mark Earth Day. The patch is of the two hanging socks surrounded by the recycling symbol. The Red Sox had worn that logo in 2008 and 2009.

The Reds and Giants wore Spanish-language "Los Rojos" and "Gigantes" uniforms respectively on May 5, Cinco de Mayo.

Teams wore uniforms with pink lettering on May 8, Mother's Day.

The Reds wore camouflage uniforms on May 21, Armed Forces Day. The team's uniforms had the "Reds" script wordmark on the front, rather than the "C" and the Reds and the player's number.

The Blue Jays wore a 1970s-era cap May 29 to mark the franchise's 40th season.

The Nationals wore a blue uniform with their "W" logo shaped like the American flag on May 29.

Teams wore camouflage caps and uniforms May 30, Memorial Day in the United States. The uniforms were woodland camouflage, licensed from the US Marine Corps. The Blue Jays wore camoudlage of the Canadian forces' CADPAT design, even though Memorial Day is not officially a holiday in Toronto or Canada on the last Monday in May.

Teams will wear uniforms with blue lettering on June 19, Father's Day.

The silhouetted batter logo will appear on the back belt loop of pants.[56]

Venues

This is the Atlanta Braves' final season at Turner Field before moving into their new ballpark, which is SunTrust Park in Cobb County, Georgia. The Braves will play their final regular season game at Turner Field against the Detroit Tigers on October 2, 2016.

The Toronto Blue Jays have a full dirt infield in Rogers Centre after using sliding pits throughout their history there as well as Exhibition Stadium.[57]

Television

National

United States

This will be the third year of the current eight-year deals with Fox Sports, ESPN and TBS. Fox will air eight weeks of baseball on Saturday night leading up to the 2016 Major League Baseball All-Star Game, which will also air on Fox. Fox will then televise Saturday afternoon games for the last four weeks of the regular season. Fox Sports 1 will televise games on Tuesday nights and Saturdays, both during the afternoon and night. ESPN will televise games on its flagship telecast, Sunday Night Baseball, as well as Monday and Wednesday nights. TBS will televise Sunday afternoon games for the last 13 weeks of the regular season. Fox and ESPN Sunday Night Baseball telecasts will be exclusive; all other national telecasts will be subject to local blackout.

TBS will televise the American League Wild Card Game, Division Series, and Championship Series. ESPN will televise the National League Wild Card Game, Fox Sports 1 and MLB Network will televise the National League Division Series, and Fox and Fox Sports 1 will televise the National League Championship Series. The World Series will air exclusively on Fox for the 17th consecutive year.

On April 14, 2016, it was announced that 25 MLB Network Showcase games would be broadcast in 4K ultra-high definition exclusively on DirecTV in the 2016 season (subject to local blackout restrictions), beginning April 15.[58]

Canada

On October 5, 2015, Toronto Blue Jays owner Rogers Communications announced that all Blue Jays home games on Sportsnet during the 2016 season would be broadcast in 4K.[59]

Local

In November 2015, after negotiations surrounding revenue sharing and infrastructural mandates (including a proposed requirement that the games only be available through the league's existing apps), Fox Sports Networks reached a three-year deal with Major League Baseball to allow in-market, authenticated online streaming for eligible pay TV subscribers via Fox Sports Go, of regional telecasts for the sixteen teams it holds rights to, beginning in the 2016 season.[60][61][62]

Radio

ESPN Radio will air its 19th season of national coverage, including Sunday Night Games, Saturday games, Opening Day and holiday games, the All-Star Game, and Home Run Derby, and the entire postseason.

Local

The Chicago White Sox moved from WSCR to WLS for the 2016 season. The Chicago Cubs concurrently moved to WSCR from its sister station WBBM, per an option in the team's contract with CBS Radio in the event WSCR lost the White Sox.[63][64][65]

The Philadelphia Phillies moves their radio broadcasts from WPHT AM to WIP FM starting on 2016.[66]

Retirements

Retired numbers

  • Wade Boggs had his #26 retired by the Boston Red Sox on May 26. It was the tenth number retired by the organization.[78]
  • Pete Rose will have his #14 retired by the Cincinnati Reds on June 26 as part of the Reds' Hall of Fame Ceremony. Rose is also to be inducted as part of the Reds' 2016 induction class. This will be the tenth number retired by the Reds.[79]
  • Mike Piazza will have his #31 retired by the New York Mets on July 30. This will be the fourth number retired by the Mets.[80]
  • Ken Griffey Jr. will have a formal retirement ceremony for his #24 by the Seattle Mariners during the pregame on August 6; the number had officially been retired as of the start of the season. It is the first number retired by the team. Griffey's number has also been retired throughout the whole Mariners minor-league organization.[81]

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