1888 National 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."

Baseball Almanac Top Quote

"There is a certain amount of fascination to the big league debut of any athlete. Sometimes they are incredible successes. Sometimes they are frenetic failures." - Sportswriter Arthur Daley

1888 National League Debuts

1888 N.L. Rookies | 1888 A.A. Rookies | Baseball Firsts (All Years)

n/a
08-09-1888
28
n/a
06-21-1888
23
n/a
07-07-1888
24
n/a
04-24-1888
23
n/a
06-20-1888
22
n/a
05-18-1888
19
n/a
06-22-1888
24
n/a
04-23-1888
23
n/a
06-23-1888
21
n/a
09-20-1888
20
n/a
04-21-1888
21
n/a
09-15-1888
19
n/a
04-24-1888
21
n/a
08-03-1888
20
n/a
07-07-1888
24
n/a
07-30-1888
25
n/a
09-14-1888
25
n/a
08-07-1888
24
n/a
08-10-1888
25
n/a
04-20-1888
29
n/a
07-23-1888
28
n/a
04-23-1888
20
n/a
05-22-1888
20
n/a
04-20-1888
21
n/a
09-29-1888
21
n/a
04-23-1888
21
n/a
06-06-1888
23
n/a
06-25-1888
25
n/a
06-20-1888
20
n/a
05-01-1888
24
n/a
07-06-1888
23
n/a
09-15-1888
24
n/a
10-05-1888
19
n/a
06-23-1888
21
n/a
10-03-1888
24
n/a
09-27-1888
22
n/a
07-19-1888
20
n/a
05-09-1888
40
n/a
09-27-1888
21
n/a
04-20-1888
25
n/a
09-28-1888
24
n/a
04-20-1888
24
1888 National League Debuts
baseball almanac flat baseball

baseball almanac fast facts

Find out which players bid farewell to their field's of dreams in the National League during the 1888 season as this group of players made their Major League debut!

Ray Jansen (four for five in his first game), Aubrey Epps (three for four in his first game) and Ed Irwin (two for three in his first game) all finished their career with lifetime batting averages which were greater than their career fielding percentages.

Did you know that on September 27, 1963 the Houston Colt .45s fielded an all-rookie lineup that included future stars Joe Morgan , Jerry Grote , and Rusty Staub ?

Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac3h
@Dylan_716 During that exact moment, I was literally getting an "attack" to a script. My host shut down my servers,… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac3h
@tgpschmenk 🤓 - the update took me a little more than an hour, and after I literally confirmed every single one of… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac3h
@paddy0_bronx We do sir. Scroll down a bit. We go pitching stats, hitting stats, fielding stats, then have base run… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac05 Apr
JayGlenda Glenn asked on FB, "were are all these picthers or were any of these position players coming in to finish… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac05 Apr
1️⃣6️⃣ innings - most played during an #OpeningDay game! A Plain Dealer photographer took this photo OTD2012, at Pr… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac04 Apr
Updated: Adrián Zabala. #LHP with #NewYork #Giants in 1945 & 1949. Born in #Cuba. Suspended for playing the Mexican… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac04 Apr
UPDATED: Masahiro Tanaka, OTD2014, surrendered HR to 1st batter [baseball-almanac.com/feats/feats23.…], during debut. Today, I a… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac03 Apr
UPDATED: We discovered 38 players who STOLE HOME TEN-OR-MORE TIMES in their CAREER [baseball-almanac.com/recbooks/rb_st…]. We re… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac02 Apr
Was it cork? (🤨) Was it a Wham-O-Ball? (🤣) Here at #BaseballAlmanac, we simply miss watching #baseball games. Image… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac02 Apr
RIP 😢: Bob Lee [baseball-almanac.com/players/player…]. RHP (1964-1968) with #Angels, #Dodgers, #Reds. Updated: Added died on dat… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac02 Apr
Baseball Almanac Player of the Day: Don Sutton [baseball-almanac.com/players/player…]. Born OTD1945. Did you know "The Mechanic"… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac02 Apr
UPDATED: You know Pudge. The Big Hurt. Junior. Dozens more we imagine. But, have you ever wanted to see every #HOFtwitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac02 Apr
A fellow SABR (@sabr) researcher recently asked what players have worn #69 in a regular season game. Here is that l… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac31 Mar
Mark McGwire, OTD1998, hit a HR. That historic HR ended up being the 1st-of-70 dingers Big Mac hit that year [… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac31 Mar
UPDATED: Steve Yeager. New home address. Integrated a #TuesdayTrivia question on #BaseballAlmanac, about the no-hit… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac30 Mar
OTD2000: Rey Ordonez committed an error (😲) ending #MLB record. Rickey Henderson stole a base, in 4th different dec… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac30 Mar
Updated. ART HOUTTEMAN. Received cemetery update from Dr. Fred Worth. Added a trivia question about Detroit Catholi… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac30 Mar
Updated. BASEBALL MOVIE CHECKLIST. Shoutout to @seamus1942 for finding the omission (The Perfect Game / True Story… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac29 Mar
Received an email from Steven Schwartz that included, "With Baseball Almanac you feel like you are visiting a place… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Baseball Almanac@BaseballAlmanac29 Mar
UPDATED: John Rainey. 19th century #MLB player with 59 career games. Received a cemetery change (Dr. Fred Worth), s… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…
Desktop Version