Year In Review : 1998 American League

O ff the field...

Senator John Glenn blasted off for the second time at age seventy-seven to participate in a study of the effects of weightlessness and space stress on the elderly. The veteran astronaut had no difficulties performing his duties aboard the Space Shuttle and returned to earth with flying colors.

President Bill Clinton was accused of having improper relations with a young, White House intern. Despite denying the allegations, a thorough investigation is conducted and the house proposes the possibility of impeachment.

Seventy-six million people tuned in to view the last installment of a "show about nothing" as Seinfeld broadcasted its farewell performance. The series is still the most widely viewed sitcom ever in syndication and has made creator Jerry Seinfeld one of the wealthiest royalty recipients in the history of television.

I n the American League...

The Oakland Athletics Rickey Henderson scored the 2,000th run of his career in the A's 15-6 loss to the Cleveland Indians. In doing so, he joined Ty Cobb, Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, Pete Rose, and Willie Mays as the only players to reach the milestone.

Cal Ripken started his 2,500th consecutive game as the Baltimore Orioles defeated the Oakland A's, 8-2. In perspective, the subsequent twenty-two longest active streaks (combined) add up to less than the "Iron Man's" own total.

Manager Joe Torre's Yankees outplayed the 1927 team and finished the season with an astonishing one hundred, fourteen regular-season wins and eleven postseason victories. The Bombers win column represented the most "Ws" by any team in one hundred, twenty-three years of Major League baseball.

I n the National League...

Montreal Expos skipper Felipe Alou tallied his 521st career-win as manager thanks to veteran pitcher Dustin Hermanson who was also the starter in Alou's 400th, 450th, and 500th wins.

On September 8th, St. Louis Cardinal Mark McGwire topped Roger Maris' single-season home run mark by slugging his sixty-second of the year off the Chicago Cubs' Steve Trachsel. Fittingly, Sammy Sosa, McGwire's closest running mate in the race to break sixty-one, was in attendance on the field.

San Francisco Giant Barry Bonds hit his 400th home run, off the Florida Marlins' Kirt Ojala and became the first player in Major League history to boast four-hundred homeruns and four-hundred steals in a career.

A round the league...

Chicago Cubs broadcaster Harry Caray died at the age of eighty-four, four days after collapsing at a Valentine's Day dinner. The Wrigley Field icon, known best for leading the fans in the traditional rendition of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" left behind countless memories from a career that spanned half a century.

In an effort to secure financial stability, the Cleveland Indians requested permission from the Securities and Exchange Commission to sell four million shares of the team to the public.

Congress finally passed a bill that removed part of baseball's seventy-six year antitrust exemption. The groundbreaking citation was supported by both the owners and the players union and was later signed by President Bill Clinton.

In November, Yankee and A's icon Jim "Catfish" Hunter was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, an ultimately fatal neurological condition better known as "Lou Gehrig's disease."

"You measure the value of a ballplayer by how many fannies he puts in the seats." - George Steinbrenner
1998 American League Player Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Base on Balls

Oakland

118

Batting Average

New York

.339

Doubles

Texas

50

Hits

Seattle

213

Home Runs

Seattle

56

On Base Percentage

Seattle

.433

RBI

Texas

157

Runs

New York

127

Slugging Average

Chicago

.655

Stolen Bases

Oakland

66

Total Bases

Chicago

399

Triples

Kansas City

13

1998 American League Pitcher Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Complete Games

Baltimore

11

ERA

Toronto

2.65

Games

Detroit

88

Saves

Boston

46

Shutouts

New York

5

Strikeouts

Toronto

271

Winning Percentage

New York

.818

Wins

Toronto

20

New York

Texas

1998 American League

Team Standings

New York Yankees

114 48 .704 0

$73,963,698

Boston Red Sox

92 70 .568 22

$59,547,000

Toronto Blue Jays

88 74 .543 26

$37,618,500

Baltimore Orioles

79 83 .488 35

$74,170,921

Tampa Bay Devil Rays

63 99 .389 51

$27,645,000

Cleveland Indians

89 73 .549 0

$56,843,441

Chicago White Sox

80 82 .494 9

$37,880,000

Kansas City Royals

72 89 .447

$35,610,000

Minnesota Twins

70 92 .432 19

$22,027,500

Detroit Tigers

65 97 .401 24

$23,318,980

Texas Rangers

88 74 .543 0

$62,755,368

Anaheim Angels

85 77 .525 3

$54,189,000

Seattle Mariners

76 85 .472 11½

$44,860,014

Oakland Athletics

74 88 .457 14

$18,585,114

1998 American League Team Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Base on Balls

New York

653

Batting Average

Texas

.289

Doubles

Boston

338

Hits

Texas

1,637

Home Runs

Seattle

234

On Base Percentage

New York

.368

Runs

New York

965

Slugging Average

Seattle

.468

Stolen Bases

Toronto

184

Triples

Tampa Bay

43

1998 American League Team Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Complete Games

New York

22

ERA

New York

3.82

Fewest Hits Allowed

New York

1,357

Fewest Home Runs Allowed

New York

156

Fewest Walks Allowed

Minnesota

458

Saves

Boston

53

Shutouts

New York

16

Strikeouts

Seattle

1,156



On March 31, 1998, the Devil Rays played their first game ever and lost to the Tigers 11-6 at Tropicana Field.

On July 5, 1998, Roger Clemens struck out Randy Winn from the Devil Rays and joined the elite 3,000 Strikeout Club .

On September 20, 1998, Cal Ripken, Jr. ended " the streak " when he asked his manager to be removed from the lineup.

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