March 22 – On an off-day during spring training, Cleveland Indians pitchers Bob Ojeda, Tim Crews, and Steve Olin are fishing on a rented 18-foot bass boat when the vessel strikes a dock at high speed, killing Olin and Crews. They are the first active major leaguers to die since Thurman Munson in 1979. Ojeda is seriously injured but survives.
April 8 – Against the New York Yankees at Cleveland Stadium, Carlos Baerga of the Cleveland Indians becomes the first player to hit a home run from both sides of the plate in the same inning. In the Indians' nine-run seventh inning, Baerga begins the scoring with a two-run home run against left-hander Steve Howe. He concludes the scoring by homering again, this time against right-hander Steve Farr. The Indians defeat the Yankees, 15-5.
July 20 – At Atlanta–Fulton County Stadium, a fire breaks out in the skybox/press box area, delaying the start of the scheduled game between the Braves and the St. Louis Cardinals. Incidentally, the Braves' trade for Fred McGriff is completed a few days earlier and McGriff arrives at the stadium that night. After an hour delay, the game is played and McGriff pinch-hits a home run late, helping the Braves rally from a 5-0 deficit to win 7-5. The Braves trail the San Francisco Giants in the National League West Division by 91⁄2 games at that point, and this game is seen as the game that sparks their run to the division title.
September 4 – The Philadelphia Phillies lose to the Cincinnati Reds by a score of 6-5. In doing so, they set a new National League record by not being shut out in 151 consecutive games. The major league mark of 308 is held by the Yankees.
September 18 – In yet another twist to the Yankees–Red Sox rivalry, the Red Sox hold a 3-1 lead in the ninth inning. With two outs, the Yankees' Mike Stanley pops out to end the game, however the play is called a no play when home plate umpire Tim Welke is forced to call time when a fan runs out onto the field just as the pitch is delivered. The Yankees then push three runs across the plate to win the game (4-3 final).
September 22 – Pitcher Nolan Ryan of the Texas Rangers faces just six Seattle Mariners batters before hurting his right elbow. Ryan, who announces his retirement at season's end, finishes his career with 324 wins, 5,714 strikeouts and seven no-hitters.
September 22 – The Colorado Rockies play the final home game of their inaugural season and finish with a major league home attendance record of 4,483,350 fans.
September 28 – The Philadelphia Phillies clinch their first National League East championship in a decade with a 10-7 win in Pittsburgh. the win gives the Phillies their sixth division championship, trailing only rival Pirates for most NL East championships during the two-division era.
October 4 – The Chicago Cubs, with an 84-78 win-loss record, gain their first winning-season in a non-title year since 1972. From 1973 through 1992 the Cubs have a non-winning record except for their NL Eastern division title years of 1984 and 1989.
January 21 – Charlie Gehringer, 89, Hall of Fame second baseman who played his entire career for the Detroit Tigers, batting .320 lifetime, scoring 100 runs twelve times, and collecting 200 hits seven times; 1937 MVP had seven 100-RBI seasons, led AL in hits and doubles twice each and in steals and triples once each, retired with 7th most doubles in history and record for career double plays
January 28 – Vern Kennedy, 85, twice All-Star pitcher for seven teams between 1934 and 1945, who threw a no-hitter against the Cleveland Indians in 1935
February 10 – Rip Repulski, 65, All-Star outfielder, mainly with the Cardinals and Phillies
March 6 – George Stumpf, 82, outfielder who played in the early 1930s for the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox
March 22 – Steve Olin, 27, relief pitcher for the Cleveland Indians since 1989 whose 48 saves ranked third in club history
March 23 – Tim Crews, 31, relief pitcher newly acquired by the Indians who had 15 saves in 281 appearances for the Dodgers
April 21 – Hal Schumacher, 82, All-Star pitcher who won 158 games for the New York Giants; pitched 10-inning victory in 1936 World Series
April 22 – Mark Koenig, 88, shortstop who was the last survivor from the 1927 New York Yankees "Murderers' Row" team; batted .319 the next year
June 2 – Johnny Mize, 80, Hall of Fame first baseman, primarily for the Cardinals and New York Giants, who won four NL home run titles and retired with the sixth most HRs in history; MVP runnerup in 1939 and 1940 batted .312 in his career and led NL in RBI and total bases three times each and in runs, doubles and triples once each; hit three home runs in a game six times
June 4 – Bobby Reeves, 93, utility-man who played all positions except catcher for the Washington Senators and Boston Red Sox from 1926 to 1931
June 8 – Roy Henshaw, 81, left-handed pitcher for the Cubs, Dodgers, Cardinals and Tigers from 1933–44
June 26 – Roy Campanella, 71, Hall of Fame catcher for the Brooklyn Dodgers who won three MVP awards (1951-53-55) after several standout years in the Negro Leagues; posted a career .500 slugging percentage, highest of any catcher; in 1953, led NL in RBI and became first catcher to hit 40 home runs; career was ended by an automobile accident that left him paralyzed
July 3 – Don Drysdale, 56, Hall of Fame pitcher for the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers who won 1962 Cy Young Award and set record with 582⁄3 consecutive scoreless innings in 1968; led NL in strikeouts three times and hit batsmen five times
July 4 – Walter Stephenson, 82, backup catcher for the Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies from 1935 to 1938
July 5 – Charlie Bishop, 64, pitcher for the Philadelphia & Kansas City Athletics from 1952 to 1955
July 7 – Ben Chapman, 84, All-Star outfielder who batted .300 six times and led AL in steals four times; as manager of the Phillies, vociferously opposed Jackie Robinson's entry into major leagues
July 7 – Larry Napp, 77, American League umpire from 1951 to 1974 who worked in four World Series and four All-Star Games
July 17 – Harold Greiner, 86, All-American Girls Professional Baseball League manager
July 18 – Ted Sadowski, 57, a relief pitcher for the Washington Senators and Minnesota Twins and one of three major league brothers
August 12 – Quincy Trouppe, 80, Negro League catcher who was a 39-year-old rookie with the Cleveland Indians in 1952; with pitcher "Toothpick Sam" Jones, formed the first black battery in American League history on May 3, 1952
August 21 – Felix Evans, 82, Negro league baseball pitcher from 1934 to 1949
September 12 – Granny Hamner, 66, All-Star shortstop for the Phillies who batted .429 in the World Series with the 1950 "Whiz Kids" team
September 15 – Ethan Allen, 89, center fielder for six teams who batted .300 lifetime and led NL in doubles in 1934; later coached Yale teams with players including future President George H. W. Bush
September 19 – Frank Wurm, 79, pitcher for the 1944 Brooklyn Dodgers
November 6 – Ed Sadowski, 62, a catcher for the original Angels who also played with the Braves and Red Sox
November 8 – Hank Leiber, 82, Cubs and Giants All-Star outfielder who hit .288 with 101 home runs and 518 RBI from 1933–42, including a three-home run game in 1939
November 12 – Bill Dickey, 86, Hall of Fame catcher for the Yankees who batted .313 lifetime, had four 100-RBI seasons, and was the first AL catcher to hit 200 home runs; 11-time All-Star batted .362 in 1936, caught 38 World Series games, and was later a coach