The asterisk (*) denotes the club that won the wild card for its respective league.
† Oakland won the American League West Division by a half game over Seattle, playing one less game than the Mariners. The Athletics were not required to play their 162nd game. Even if Oakland had lost this game, their win against Seattle in the season series would have given them the division title.
Click on any series score to link to that series' page.
Higher seed has home field advantage during Division Series and League Championship Series.
The American League Champion has home field advantage in the World Series as a result of the pre-2003 "alternating years" rule.
January 6 – Major league officials order Atlanta Braves reliever John Rocker is to undergo psychological testing following derogatory remarks he made in an interview with Sports Illustrated magazine. Commissioner Bud Selig says he will listen to what the doctors say before deciding what punishment—if any—will be handed down to the pitcher.
January 11 – The baseball writers elect catcher Carlton Fisk and first baseman Tony Pérez to the Hall of Fame. Fisk is chosen in his 2nd year on the ballot, while Pérez is picked on his 9th try.
January 31 – Braves reliever John Rocker is suspended from baseball until May 1 by Commissioner Bud Selig for his racial and ethnic remarks in an article published in Sports Illustrated last month. He's also fined $20,000 and ordered to undergo sensitivity training.
March 1 – Independent arbitrator Shyam Das cuts Braves pitcher John Rocker's suspension from 28 days to 14 days. Rocker, who is allowed to report to spring training with the team, also has his fine cut.
April 4 – Expos closer Ugueth Urbina strikes out the Dodgers in the top of the ninth inning on nine pitches, tying a major league record.
April 7 – A total of 57 home runs are hit in the 15 games played, for a new major league record. The previous mark of 55 was set in 17 games on August 13, 1999. There were 36 homers hit in the AL, eclipsing the previous mark for a single league.
April 15 – The Baltimore Orioles defeat the Twins 6–4, as Cal Ripken, Jr. gets the 3,000th hit of his career. Ripken goes 3-for-5 in becoming the 24th player to reach the milestone, and the 7th to get 3,000 hits and 400 home runs.
April 21 – The Anaheim Angels down the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 9–6. Mo Vaughn and Tim Salmon hit back-to-back home runs for Anaheim in the fourth inning, then do so again in the ninth. Troy Glaus also homers in both the fourth and the ninth. This the first time in major league history that three players homer in the same inning on two occasions in the same game. The Angels' three players with two home runs each in one game ties a major league record.
June 2 – The Montréal Expos announce they will wear Maurice Richard's uniform number 9 on their jerseys for the rest of the season to honor the Montreal Canadiens great who died last week. It is believed to be the first time a major league team has honored an athlete from another sport in this way.
July 5 – Arizona outfielder Luis Gonzalez becomes the first Arizona Diamondback to hit for the cycle, helping his team to defeat the Astros 12–9. It is the first time the feat is accomplished in new Enron Field, and Gonzalez is just the 9th player in baseball history to both hit for the cycle and have a 30+ game hitting streak in a career.
July 6 – St. Louis rookie catcher Keith McDonald hits a home run in his second at bat, becoming only the second player in major league history to hit home runs in each of his first two big league at bats.Bob Nieman, in 1951, is the other.
July 8 – In a New York matchup, the Yankees defeat the Mets by identical 4–2 scores in both ends of an unusual day-night doubleheader. With the first game played at Shea Stadium and the nightcap at Yankee Stadium, it is the first time since 1903 that two teams played two games in different stadiums on the same day. Dwight Gooden wins the first game with a six inning effort in his first start since returning to the Yankees. Roger Clemens wins the nightcap. During the second game, Clemens hit Mike Piazza in the helmet with an inside fastball, causing Piazza to suffer a concussion.
July 20 – In Houston's 6–2 win over Cincinnati, Reds pinch-hitter Mike Bell strikes out in his major league debut, making history by becoming part of the first third-generation family to play for the same major league team. His grandfather Gus Bell and father Buddy Bell also played for the Reds.
August 4 – The Blue Jays obtain outfielder Dave Martinez from the Rangers. Martinez becomes the 9th major leaguer to play for four teams in a season. He began the year with Tampa Bay and also played with the Cubs, in addition to Texas and Toronto. The last to do so was Dave Kingman (1977). Before him, according to historian Scott Flatow, the four-in-one players were Frank Huelsman (1904), Willis Hudlin (1940), Paul Lehner (1951), Ted Gray, (1955), Wes Covington (1961) and Mike Kilkenny (1972).
August 8 – Trailing 3–2 entering the bottom of the ninth, the Yankees hit back-to-back home runs on back-to-back pitches from Oakland closer Jason Isringhausen. Bernie Williams jumped on the first pitch and sent it over the right field fence to tie the game, then David Justice sent the very next offering from Isringhausen over the center field wall to give the Yankees the win.
August 19 – The Yankees beat the Angels 9–1, hitting a major league record-tying three sacrifice flies in the 3rd inning.
August 21 – Potomac's Esix Snead breaks Lenny Dykstra's Carolina League record of 105 stolen bases by swiping his 106th. Snead has a batting average of .242 and a .338 on base percentage. It's the 10th time in the last 20 years that a minor-leaguer has stolen 100 or more bases in a season. According to Howe Sports data, the eight players who stole 100 or more bases in the minors were:
September 10 – Randy Johnson of the Arizona Diamondbacks becomes the 12th pitcher to reach the 3,000-strikeout plateau, fanning a season-high 14 in seven innings as the Diamondbacks lose to the Florida Marlins 4–3 in 12 innings. Johnson's 3,000 strikeout victim is Mike Lowell, who fans to end the 4th inning. In the first inning, Johnson also records his 300th strikeout for the third consecutive season and the fourth time overall. Nolan Ryan is the only other pitcher to accomplish the feat, and is the only pitcher who has reached 300 strikeouts more times with six (1972–74, 1976–77 and 1989).
September 26 – Longtime broadcast partner NBC declines to renew its rights. NBC had televised baseball since 1947, with the exception of 1990–93, and had been the exclusive home of the World Series for 26years.
September 27 – In an Oakland 9–7 victory over the Angels, Anaheim's Darin Erstad hits a home run in the 2nd inning for his 99th RBI of the year from the leadoff spot to set a new record. Nomar Garciaparra drove home 98 in 1997 for the previous mark.
Season Note – First time in MLB history that no team finished with a winning percentage below .400 and above .600