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The following are the baseball events of the year 1988 throughout the world.
Major League Baseball
- World Series: Los Angeles Dodgers over Oakland Athletics (4-1); Orel Hershiser, MVP
- All-Star Game, July 12 at Riverfront Stadium: American League, 2-1; Terry Steinbach, MVP
- Caribbean World Series: Leones del Escogido (Dominican Republic)
- College World Series: Stanford
- Japan Series: Seibu Lions over Chunichi Dragons (4-1)
- Little League World Series: Tai Ping, Taichung, Taiwan
- Summer Olympic Games at Seoul, South Korea (demonstration sport): United States (1st), Japan (2nd), Puerto Rico (3rd)
Awards and honors
- Most Valuable Player
- Cy Young Award
- Rookie of the Year
- Manager of the Year Award
MLB Statistical Leaders
Major League Baseball final standings
|1st||Boston Red Sox||89||73||.549||--|
|3rd||Toronto Blue Jays||87||75||.537||2.0|
|5th||New York Yankees||85||76||.528||3.5|
|3rd||Kansas City Royals||84||77||.522||19.5|
|5th||Chicago White Sox||71||90||.441||32.5|
|1st||New York Mets||100||60||.625||--|
|5th||St. Louis Cardinals||76||86||.469||25.0|
|1st||Los Angeles Dodgers||94||67||.584||--|
|3rd||San Diego Padres||83||78||.516||11.0|
|4th||San Francisco Giants||83||79||.512||11.5|
- January 12 - Former Pittsburgh Pirates slugger Willie Stargell is the only player elected to the Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers Association of America. Stargell becomes the 17th player to be elected in his first year of eligibility. Pitcher Jim Bunning garners 317 votes (74.2%), and falls four votes shy of the 321 needed for election in his 13th year on the ballot.
- March 1 - For the first time since 1956, the Special Veterans Committee does not elect anyone to the Hall of Fame. Phil Rizzuto, Leo Durocher, Joe Gordon and Gil Hodges are among the candidates passed over.
- July 12 - After being maligned by the press as an unworthy All-Star starter, catcher Terry Steinbach hits a solo home run and a sacrifice fly to lead the American League to a 2–1 victory over the National League at Riverfront Stadium. Steinbach is named the MVP.
- September 17 - Jeff Reardon becomes the first pitcher to save 40 games in both leagues as the Minnesota Twins beat the Chicago White Sox 3-1. Reardon, who saved 42 games for the Montréal Expos in 1985, pitches the ninth inning for his 40th save in 47 opportunities.
- October 20 - Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Orel Hershiser ends his dream season with a 5–2 four-hitter over the Oakland Athletics in Game Five of the 1988 World Series. The win gives the Dodgers their first World Championship since 1981, and makes them the only team to win more than one World Series in the 1980s. Hershiser is selected the Series MVP.
- February 20 - Bob O'Farrell, 91, catcher for four NL teams over 21 seasons who won 1926 MVP award with the Cardinals
- February 23 - Pete Donohue, 87, pitcher who had three 20-win seasons for the Reds and beat the Phillies 20 consecutive times from 1922-25
- February 28 - Harvey Kuenn, 57, 8-time All-Star shortstop and outfielder, most notably with the Tigers, who batted .303 lifetime and led AL in hits four times and doubles three times; 1953 Rookie of the Year and 1959 batting champion, later managed Brewers to their first pennant in 1982
- March 21 - Edd Roush, 94, Hall of Fame center fielder for the Cincinnati Reds who batted .323 lifetime; led NL in batting twice, and in slugging, doubles and triples once each; hit 30 inside-the-park home runs, and ended career with 13th-most triples in history
- March 29 - Ted Kluszewski, 63, All-Star first baseman for the Reds who led NL in homers and RBI in 1954 and batted .300 seven times, known for his sleeveless jersey; later a Reds coach
- June 9 - Newt Allen, 87, All-Star second baseman for the Negro Leagues' Kansas City Monarchs
- July 4 - Lee Weyer, 51, National League umpire since 1963 who worked in four World Series and 5 NL Championship Series
- July 20 - John Galbreath, 90, owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1945 to 1985, during which period the team won three World Series
- September 2 - Jim Bagby, Jr., 71, All-Star pitcher for the Red Sox and Indians, led AL in starts and innings in 1943
- October 14 - Vic Raschi, 69, All-Star pitcher who won 20 games for the Yankees three straight years (1949-51), won World Series clinchers in 1949 and 1951
- November 21 - Carl Hubbell, 85, Hall of Fame pitcher who won 253 games for the New York Giants, second most among NL lefthanders upon retirement; named NL's MVP in 1933 and 1936, he led league in wins and ERA three times each and had 1.79 ERA in six World Series starts; 1677 strikeouts were NL record for lefthanders until 1958, and won 24 straight games in 1936-37
- November 22 - Ray Kelly, 74, sportswriter who covered the Philadelphia Athletics and Phillies since the late 1940s
- November 30 - Wally Berger, 83, All-Star center fielder for the Boston Braves who had four 100-RBI seasons, batted .300 lifetime; led NL in homers and RBI in 1935
- December 12 - Joe Reichler, 73, sportswriter and author who wrote for the Associated Press for 20 years and served as an assistant to the commissioner after 1966; editor of the Macmillan Baseball Encyclopedia since its first edition in 1969
- December 21 - Willie Kamm, 88, third baseman for the White Sox and Indians who led AL in fielding average eight times and in putouts seven times; batted .308 in 1928 and led league in walks in 1925