1988 American League Debuts

Willie Mays played his first Major League game on May 25, 1951, and went 0-for-5 at the plate. He started his career 1-for-25 and told his manager, "I can't do it, Mr. Leo. You better bench me."

Casey Stengel played his first Major League game on July 27, 1912, and went 4-for-4 at the plate. He commented later in his life, "I broke in with four hits and the writers promptly decided they had seen the new Ty Cobb. It took me only a few days to correct that impression."

Both Mays and Stengel would continue their Major League careers down separate paths of greatness, but each still had to appear in that memorable first Major League game. Baseball Almanac is pleased to present what Cubs broadcaster Steve Stone once described as, "His first Major League debut."

"You never forget your first hit in the Major Leagues. It was in my third at bat. That was kind of a relief. You could start off 0-for-34." - Ralph Kiner
1988 American League Debuts

1988 A.L. Rookies | 1988 N.L. Rookies | Baseball Firsts (All Years)

48
04-09-1988
23
43
08-12-1988
24
42
09-13-1988
21
52
09-18-1988
24
30
09-02-1988
21
23
04-04-1988
25
43
09-07-1988
21
3
04-26-1988
23
5
04-04-1988
24
56
06-04-1988
22
53
07-10-1988
22
28
04-07-1988
27
18
09-16-1988
23
54
09-03-1988
25
42
04-07-1988
25
11
09-05-1988
24
42
07-07-1988
27
36
05-29-1988
25
6
07-08-1988
25
48
04-08-1988
23
45
09-10-1988
25
6
06-04-1988
27
56
09-25-1988
24
24
09-02-1988
23
25
08-01-1988
26
34
07-08-1988
24
30
08-02-1988
27
46
06-04-1988
23
36
04-10-1988
25
68
09-02-1988
25
17
09-10-1988
24
69
09-02-1988
25
57
07-30-1988
23
75
09-09-1988
21
48
04-08-1988
28
17
04-07-1988
28
23
09-10-1988
23
49
08-29-1988
24
51
09-07-1988
21
54
09-09-1988
23
36
09-08-1988
20
35
09-08-1988
24
29
09-08-1988
25
31
07-07-1988
24
38
06-02-1988
24
18
06-03-1988
23
23
04-04-1988
25
1
09-03-1988
19
46
08-05-1988
26
18
06-25-1988
28
52
08-03-1988
22
57, 58
05-17-1988
26
62
07-29-1988
23
30
09-04-1988
24
54
05-31-1988
24
41
06-28-1988
26
21
04-08-1988
23
6
09-02-1988
23
52
07-06-1988
24
8
06-27-1988
23
39
09-05-1988
23
35
08-02-1988
24
40
06-10-1988
25
44
08-19-1988
24
37
04-06-1988
24
46
05-15-1988
30
7
09-14-1988
24
48
09-02-1988
26
47
09-13-1988
24
54
04-17-1988
28
34
09-16-1988
23
10
04-06-1988
24
6
04-04-1988
22
27
08-14-1988
25
16
04-06-1988
22
1988 American League Debuts


Find out which players bid farewell to their field's of dreams in the American League during the 1988 season as this group of players made their Major League debut!

Did you know that Future hall of famer Addie Joss made his Major League pitching debut on April 26, 1902 and tossed a one hitter?

When Christy Mathewson made his Major League debut the newspaper wrote, "The untried semi-professional possessed great speed and plenty of confidence in himself, but could not control his curves."

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