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The National League of Professional Baseball Clubs, known simply as the National League (NL), is the older of two leagues constituting
Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club system. It is played in baseball league, leagu ...
(MLB) in the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country in . It consists of 50 , a , five major , 326 , and some . At , it is the world's . The United States shares significan ...

United States
and
Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its Provinces and territories of Canada, ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic Ocean, Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocea ...

Canada
, and the world's oldest extant professional team sports league. Founded on February 2, 1876, to replace the
National Association of Professional Base Ball Players The National Association of Professional Base Ball Players (NAPBBP), often known simply as the National Association (NA), was the first fully-Professional sports league organization, professional sports league in baseball. The NA was founded in ...
(NAPBBP) of 1871–1875 (often called simply the "National Association"), the NL is sometimes called the Senior Circuit, in contrast to MLB's other league, the
American League The American League of Professional Baseball Clubs, or simply the American League (AL), is one of two leagues that make up Major League Baseball (MLB) in the United States and Canada. It developed from the Western League (original), Western Leagu ...
, which was founded 25 years later and is called the "Junior Circuit". Both leagues currently have 15 teams. After two years of conflict in a "baseball war" of 1901–1902, the two eight-team leagues agreed in a "peace pact" to recognize each other as "major leagues", draft rules regarding player contracts, prohibiting "raiding", regulating relationships with
minor leagues Minor leagues are professional sports leagues which are not regarded as the premier leagues in those sports Sport pertains to any form of competitive physical activity or game with separate sliding drawer, from 1390–1353 BC, m ...
and lower level clubs, and with each establishing a team in the nation's largest metropolis of
New York City New York, often called New York City to distinguish it from , or NYC for short, is the in the United States. With a 2020 population of 8,804,190 distributed over , New York City is also the major city in the United States. Located at the s ...

New York City
, and the league champions of 1903 arranged to compete against each other in the new professional baseball championship tournament with the inaugural "
World Series The World Series is the annual championship series of Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball organization and the oldest major professional sports league in the world. , a total of 30 teams play in Ma ...

World Series
" that Fall of 1903, succeeding earlier similar national series in previous decades since the 1880s. After the 1904 champions failed to reach a similar agreement, the two leagues also formalized the new World Series tournament beginning in 1905 as an arrangement between the leagues themselves. National League teams have won 51 of the 116 World Series championships contested from 1903 to 2021.


History


Foundation

By 1875, the
National Association of Professional Base Ball Players The National Association of Professional Base Ball Players (NAPBBP), often known simply as the National Association (NA), was the first fully-Professional sports league organization, professional sports league in baseball. The NA was founded in ...
(NAPBBP, often referred to as the "National Association"), founded four years earlier, was suffering from a lack of strong authority over clubs, unsupervised scheduling, unstable membership of cities, dominance by one team (the Boston Red Stockings), and an extremely low entry fee ($10) that gave clubs no incentive to abide by league rules when it was inconvenient to them. William A. Hulbert (1832–1882), a
Chicago (''City in a Garden''); I Will , image_map = , map_caption = Interactive map of Chicago , coordinates = , coordinates_footnotes = , subdivision_type = Country , subdivision_name ...

Chicago
businessman and an officer of the
Chicago White StockingsWhite Stockings or "Chicago White Stockings" was an original name of two professional baseball clubs in Chicago, Illinois, mainly the two Major League Baseball clubs in both the older National League (1876) and later American League (1901) that opera ...
of 1870–1889, approached several NA clubs with the plans for a professional league for the sport of base ball with a stronger central authority and exclusive territories in larger cities only. Additionally, Hulbert had a problem: five of his star players were threatened with expulsion from the NAPBBP because Hulbert had signed them to his club using what were considered questionable means. Hulbert had a great vested interest in creating his own league, and after recruiting St. Louis privately, four western clubs met in
Louisville, Kentucky Louisville ( , , ) is the largest city A city is a large human settlement In geography, statistics and archaeology, a settlement, locality or populated place is a community in which people live. The complexity of a settlement can ...
, in January 1876. With Hulbert speaking for the four later in New York City on February 2, 1876, the National League of Professional Base Ball Clubs was established with eight charter members, as follows: * Chicago ("Chicago White Stockings") (according to ''
The Baseball Encyclopedia ''The Baseball Encyclopedia'' is a baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on the fielding ...
''s retroactive naming convention) from the NA (now the Chicago Cubs, not to be confused with the current
Chicago White Sox The Chicago White Sox are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a pla ...

Chicago White Sox
of the
American League The American League of Professional Baseball Clubs, or simply the American League (AL), is one of two leagues that make up Major League Baseball (MLB) in the United States and Canada. It developed from the Western League (original), Western Leagu ...
) * Athletic Club of Philadelphia ("Philadelphia Athletics") from the NA (expelled after the 1876 season) * Boston ("Boston Red Stockings"), the dominant team in the NA (later the Boston Braves, then the
Milwaukee Braves The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club system. It is played in baseball league, leag ...
, now the
Atlanta Braves The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball team based in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The Braves compete in Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is an American professional baseball organization and the oldes ...
, not to be confused with the present-day
Boston Red Sox The Boston Red Sox are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player ...
of the later American League) * Hartford ("Hartford Dark Blues") from the NA (folded after the 1877 season) * Mutual Club of New York ("New York Mutuals") from the NA (expelled after the 1876 season) * St. Louis ("St. Louis Brown Stockings") from the NA (folded after the 1877 season, having committed to Louisville stars for 1878) * Cincinnati ("Cincinnati Reds"), a new franchise (disbanded after the 1879 season) * Louisville ("Louisville Grays"), a new franchise (folded after the 1877 season when four players were banned for gambling) The National League's formation meant the end of the old National Association after only five seasons, as its remaining clubs shut down or reverted to amateur or minor league status. The only strong club from 1875 excluded in 1876 was a second one in Philadelphia, often called the White Stockings or later Phillies. The first game in National League history was played on April 22, 1876, at
Philadelphia Philadelphia (colloquially known simply as Philly) is the largest city in the of in the . It is the in the United States and the city in the state of Pennsylvania, with a 2020 population of 1,603,797. It is also the in the Northeastern U ...
's
Jefferson Street Grounds Jefferson Street Grounds was a baseball field A baseball field, also called a ball field, sandlot or a baseball diamond, is the field upon which the game of baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between t ...
, at 25th & Jefferson Streets, between the Philadelphia Athletics and the Boston baseball club. Boston won the game 6–5. The new league's authority was soon tested after the first season. The Athletic and Mutual clubs fell behind in the standings and refused to make western road trips late in the season, preferring to play games against local non-league competition to recoup some of their financial losses rather than travel extensively incurring more costs. Hulbert reacted to the clubs' defiance by expelling them, an act which not only shocked baseball followers (New York and Philadelphia were the two most populous cities in the league) and the then sports world, but made it clear to clubs that league schedule commitments, a cornerstone of competition integrity, were not to be ignored. The National League operated with only six clubs during 1877 and 1878. Over the next several years, various teams joined and left the struggling league. By 1880, six of the eight charter members had folded. The two remaining original NL franchises,
Boston Boston (, ), officially the City of Boston, is the capital city, capital and List of municipalities in Massachusetts, most populous city of the Commonwealth (U.S. state), Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the United States and 21st List of Unit ...

Boston
and Chicago, remain still in operation today as the
Atlanta Braves The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball team based in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The Braves compete in Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is an American professional baseball organization and the oldes ...
and the
Chicago Cubs The Chicago Cubs are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on ...
. When all eight participants for 1881 returned for 1882—the first off-season without turnover in membership—the "circuit" consisted of a zig-zag line connecting the eight cities:
Chicago (''City in a Garden''); I Will , image_map = , map_caption = Interactive map of Chicago , coordinates = , coordinates_footnotes = , subdivision_type = Country , subdivision_name ...

Chicago
,
Detroit (strait A strait is a naturally formed, narrowing, typically navigable waterway that connects two larger bodies of water. The surface water generally flows at the same elevation on both sides and through the strait in either direction. Mo ...
,
Cleveland Cleveland ( ), officially the City of Cleveland, is a city in the U.S. The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country primarily located in North America North ...
,
Buffalo
Buffalo
,
Troy Troy (Greek language, Greek: Τροία) or Ilium (Greek language, Greek: Ίλιον) was an ancient city located at Hisarlik in present-day Turkey, south-west of Çanakkale. It is known as the setting for the Greek mythology, Greek myth of the ...
(near the state capital of
Albany, New York Albany ( ) is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller low ...
),
Worcester Worcester may refer to: Places United Kingdom * Worcester, England, a city in Worcestershire ** Worcester (UK Parliament constituency) * Worcester Park, London, England * Worcestershire, a county in England United States * Worcester, Massachus ...
(
Massachusetts Massachusetts (, ), officially the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is the most populous state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * ...

Massachusetts
),
Boston Boston (, ), officially the City of Boston, is the capital city, capital and List of municipalities in Massachusetts, most populous city of the Commonwealth (U.S. state), Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the United States and 21st List of Unit ...

Boston
, and
Providence Providence often refers to: * Providentia, the divine personification of foresight in ancient Roman religion * Divine providence, divinely ordained events and outcomes in Christianity * Providence, Rhode Island, the capital of Rhode Island in the ...

Providence
. In 1883, new
New York New York most commonly refers to: * New York City, the most populous city in the United States, located in the state of New York * New York (state), a state in the northeastern United States New York may also refer to: Film and television * New ...
and
Philadelphia Philadelphia (colloquially known simply as Philly) is the largest city in the Commonwealth A commonwealth is a traditional English term for a political community founded for the common good In philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is ...
clubs began National League play. Both teams remain in the NL today, the Phillies in their original city and the New York franchise (later named Giants) now in
San Francisco San Francisco (; Spanish Spanish may refer to: * Items from or related to Spain: **Spaniards, a nation and ethnic group indigenous to Spain **Spanish language **Spanish cuisine Other places * Spanish, Ontario, Canada * Spanish River (dis ...

San Francisco
since 1958.


Competition with other leagues

The NL encountered its first strong rival organization when the
American AssociationAmerican Association may refer to one of the following professional baseball leagues: * American Association (19th century), a major league active from 1882 to 1891 * American Association (20th century), a minor league active from 1902 to 1962 and 1 ...
began play in 1882. The AA played in cities where the NL did not have teams, offered Sunday games and alcoholic beverages in locales where permitted, and sold cheaper tickets everywhere (25 cents versus the NL's standard 50 cents, a hefty sum for many in 1882). The NL struck back by establishing new clubs in 1883 in AA cities Philadelphia (later called "Phillies") and New York (the team that would become the Giants). The National League and the American Association participated in a version of the
World Series The World Series is the annual championship series of Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball organization and the oldest major professional sports league in the world. , a total of 30 teams play in Ma ...

World Series
seven times during their ten-year coexistence. These contests were less organized than the modern Series, lasting as few as three games and as many as fifteen, with two Series (1885 and 1890) ending in disputed ties. The NL won four times and the AA only once, in 1886. Starting with the
Pittsburgh Pirates The Pittsburgh Pirates are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a play ...
in 1887, the National League began to raid the American Association for franchises to replace NL teams that folded. This undercut the stability of the AA. Other new leagues that rose to compete with the National League were the
Union Association The Union Association was a league in Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is an American professional baseball organization and the oldest of the major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada. A total of 30 ...
and the
Players' League The Players' National League of Professional Base Ball Clubs, popularly known as the Players' League (PL), was a short-lived but star-studded professional American baseball league of the 19th century. The PL was formed by the Brotherhood of Profes ...
. The Union Association was established in 1884 and folded after playing only one season, its league champion St. Louis Maroons joining the NL. The Players' League was established in 1890 by the Brotherhood of Professional Base-Ball Players, the sport's first players' union, which had failed to persuade the NL to modify its labor practices, including a
salary cap In professional sports Professional sports, as opposed to amateur sports, are sports in which athletes receive payment for their performance. Professional athleticism has come to the fore through a combination of developments. Mass media and incr ...
and a
reserve clause The reserve clause, in North American professional sports, was part of a player contract which stated the rights to players were retained by the team upon the contract's expiration. Players under these contracts were not free to enter into another c ...
that bound players to their teams indefinitely. The NL suffered many defections of star players to the Players' League, but the P.L. collapsed after one season. The Brooklyn, Chicago, Pittsburgh, and New York franchises of the NL absorbed their Players' League counterparts.


Expansion (1887–1899)

The labor strike of 1890 hastened the downfall of the American Association. After the 1891 season, the AA disbanded and merged with the NL, which became known legally for the next decade as the "National League and American Association". The teams now known as the
Cincinnati Reds The Cincinnati Reds are an American professional baseball team based in Cincinnati. The Reds compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League Central, Central division, and were a charter membe ...

Cincinnati Reds
,
Los Angeles Dodgers The Los Angeles Dodgers are an American professional team based in . The Dodgers compete in (MLB) as a member club of the (NL) division. Established in 1883 in the city of , which later became a borough of , the team joined the NL in 1890 ...
(originally Brooklyn) and
Pittsburgh Pirates The Pittsburgh Pirates are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a play ...
(as well as the now-defunct
Cleveland Spiders The Cleveland Spiders were an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player ...
) had already switched from the AA to the NL prior to 1892. With the merger, the NL absorbed the St. Louis Browns (now known as the
St. Louis Cardinals The St. Louis Cardinals are an American professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club system. It is played in baseball league, ...
), along with three other teams that did not survive into the 20th century (for those three teams, see Partnership with the American League below). While four teams that moved from the AA remain in the NL today (Pittsburgh
887 __NOTOC__ Year 887 ( DCCCLXXXVII) was a common year starting on Sunday A common year starting on Sunday is any non- leap year (i.e. a year with 365 days) that begins on Sunday, 1 January, and ends on Sunday, 31 December. Its dominical lette ...
Cincinnati 890 Los Angeles riginally Brooklyn; 1890 and St. Louis 892, only two original NL franchises (1876) remain in the league: the
Chicago Cubs The Chicago Cubs are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on ...
and the
Atlanta Braves The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball team based in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The Braves compete in Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is an American professional baseball organization and the oldes ...
(originally in Boston, and later Milwaukee). The Cubs are the only charter member to play continuously in the same city. The other two pre-1892 teams still in the league are the Philadelphia Phillies and the San Francisco Giants (originally New York), both of which joined in 1883. The National League became a 12-team circuit with monopoly status for the rest of the decade. The league became embroiled in numerous internal conflicts, not the least of which was a plan supported by some owners (and bitterly opposed by others) to form a "trust", wherein there would be one common ownership of all twelve teams. The NL used its
monopsony In economics, a monopsony is a market structure in which a single buyer substantially controls the market as the major purchaser of goods and services offered by many would-be sellers. The Microeconomics, microeconomic theory of monopsony assumes a ...
power to force a $2,400 limit on annual player wages in 1894. As the 20th century dawned, the NL was in trouble. Conduct among players was poor, and fistfights were a common sight at games. In addition to fighting each other, they fought with the umpires and often filled the air at games with foul language and obscenities. A game between the Orioles and Boston Beaneaters (a precursor to today's Atlanta Braves) in 1894 ended up having tragic consequences when players became engaged in a brawl and several boys in the stands of the
South End Grounds South End Grounds refers to any one of three baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on the ...
started a fire. The blaze quickly got out of hand and swept through downtown Boston, destroying or damaging 100 buildings. Team owners argued with each other and players hated the NL's $2,400 salary cap. Many teams also ran into trouble with city governments that forbade recreational activities on Sunday.
Billy Sunday William Ashley Sunday (November 19, 1862 – November 6, 1935) was an American outfielder An outfielder is a person playing in one of the three defensive positions in baseball or softball, farthest from the batter. These defenders are the left ...

Billy Sunday
, a prominent outfielder in the 1880s, became so disgusted with the behavior of teammates that he quit playing in 1891 to become one of America's most famous evangelical Christian preachers. Most fans appear to have felt the same way, because attendance at games was plummeting by 1900.


Partnership with the American League

After eight seasons as a 12-team league, the NL contracted back to eight teams for the 1900 season, eliminating its teams in
Baltimore Baltimore ( , locally: ) is the most populous city The United Nations uses three definitions for what constitutes a city, as not all cities in all jurisdictions are classified using the same criteria. Cities may be defined as the city prop ...
,
Cleveland Cleveland ( ), officially the City of Cleveland, is a city in the U.S. The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country primarily located in North America North ...
,
Louisville Louisville (, , ) is the largest city A city is a large human settlement In geography, statistics and archaeology, a settlement, locality or populated place is a community in which people live. The complexity of a settlement can ra ...
(which has never had another major league team since), and
Washington Washington commonly refers to: * Washington (state), United States * Washington, D.C., the capital of the United States ** Federal government of the United States (metonym) ** Washington metropolitan area, the metropolitan area centered on Washingt ...
. This provided an opportunity for competition. Three of those cities received franchises in the newly christened American League (AL) when the minor Western League changed its name to the AL in 1900, with the approval of the NL, which regarded the AL as a lesser league since they were a party to the National Agreement. The AL declined to renew its National Agreement membership when it expired the next year, and on January 28, 1901, the AL officially declared itself a second major league in competition with the NL. By 1903, the upstart AL had placed new teams in the National League cities of
Boston Boston (, ), officially the City of Boston, is the capital city, capital and List of municipalities in Massachusetts, most populous city of the Commonwealth (U.S. state), Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the United States and 21st List of Unit ...

Boston
, Chicago, New York,
Philadelphia Philadelphia (colloquially known simply as Philly) is the largest city in the Commonwealth A commonwealth is a traditional English term for a political community founded for the common good In philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is ...

Philadelphia
, and
St. Louis St. Louis () is the second-largest city in Missouri Missouri is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State ( ...

St. Louis
, as well as the "abandoned" NL cities Cleveland and Washington (and, temporarily, Baltimore). Only the Cincinnati Reds and Pittsburgh Pirates had no AL team in their markets. The AL among other things enforced a strict conduct policy among its players. The National League at first refused to recognize the new league, but reality set in as talent and money was split between the two leagues, diluting the league and decreasing financial success. After two years of bitter contention, a new version of the National Agreement was signed in 1903. This meant formal acceptance of each league by the other as an equal partner in major-league baseball, mutual respect of player contracts, and an agreement to play a postseason championship—the
World Series The World Series is the annual championship series of Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball organization and the oldest major professional sports league in the world. , a total of 30 teams play in Ma ...

World Series
. Major League Baseball narrowly averted radical reorganization in November 1920. Dissatisfied with
American League The American League of Professional Baseball Clubs, or simply the American League (AL), is one of two leagues that make up Major League Baseball (MLB) in the United States and Canada. It developed from the Western League (original), Western Leagu ...
President and National Commission head
Ban Johnson Byron Bancroft "Ban" Johnson (January 5, 1864 – March 28, 1931) was an American executive in professional baseball who served as the founder and first president of the American League (AL). Johnson developed the AL—a descendant of th ...

Ban Johnson
, NL owners dissolved the league on November 8 during heated talks on MLB reorganization in the wake of the
Black Sox Scandal The Black Sox Scandal was a Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball organization and the oldest major professional sports league in the world. , a total of 30 teams play in Major League Baseball—15 ...
. Simultaneously, three AL teams also hostile to Johnson (
Boston Red Sox The Boston Red Sox are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player ...
,
Chicago White Sox The Chicago White Sox are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a pla ...

Chicago White Sox
, and
New York Yankees The New York Yankees are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a pl ...
) withdrew from the AL and joined the eight NL teams in forming a new National League; the 12th team would be whichever of the remaining five AL teams loyal to Johnson first chose to join; if none did so an expansion team would have been placed in
Detroit (strait A strait is a naturally formed, narrowing, typically navigable waterway that connects two larger bodies of water. The surface water generally flows at the same elevation on both sides and through the strait in either direction. Mo ...

Detroit
, by far the largest one-team city at that time. Four days later, on November 12, both sides met (without Johnson) and agreed to restore the two leagues and replace the ineffective National Commission with a one-man Commissioner in the person of federal Judge
Kenesaw Mountain Landis Kenesaw Mountain Landis (; November 20, 1866 – November 25, 1944) was an American jurist A jurist is a person with expert knowledge of law; someone who analyses and comments on law. This person is usually a specialist legal scholarnot nec ...

Kenesaw Mountain Landis
. The National League circuit remained unchanged from 1900 through 1952. In 1953 the
Braves The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball team based in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The Braves compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League East, East division. The team pl ...
moved from Boston to
Milwaukee Milwaukee ( ) is the largest city in the U.S. state In the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country Contiguous United States, primarily located in ...

Milwaukee
; in 1966 they moved again, to
Atlanta Atlanta () is the capital city, capital and List of municipalities in Georgia (U.S. state), most populous city of the U.S. state of Georgia (U.S. state), Georgia. With an estimated 2019 population of 506,811, it is also the List of United ...

Atlanta
. In 1958 the
Brooklyn Dodgers The Brooklyn Dodgers were founded a Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specif ...
and the
New York Giants The New York Giants are a professional American football team based in the New York metropolitan area. The Giants compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league's National Football Conference (NFC) NFC East, East ...
moved to Los Angeles and San Francisco, respectively, bringing major league baseball to the West Coast of the U.S. for the first time.


Divisional reorganization

The NL remained an eight-team league for over 60 years. (For the eight teams, see Expansion (1887–1899) above, and "Classic Eight" below.) In 1962—facing competition from the proposed
Continental League The Continental League of Professional Baseball Clubs (known as the Continental League or CL) was a proposed third major league for baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who ta ...
and confronted by the
American League The American League of Professional Baseball Clubs, or simply the American League (AL), is one of two leagues that make up Major League Baseball (MLB) in the United States and Canada. It developed from the Western League (original), Western Leagu ...
's unilateral expansion in 1961—the NL expanded by adding the
New York Mets The New York Mets are an American professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club system. It is played in baseball league, lea ...
and the Houston Colt .45s. The "Colts" were renamed the
Houston Astros The Houston Astros are an American professional baseball team based in Houston. The Astros compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the American League (AL) American League West, West division, having moved to the division i ...
three years later. In 1969, the league added the
San Diego Padres The San Diego Padres are an American professional baseball team based in San Diego. The Padres compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League West, West division. Founded in 1969 San Diego P ...
and the
Montreal Expos The Montreal Expos (french: link=no, Les Expos de Montréal) were a Canadian professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club s ...
(now the
Washington Nationals The Washington Nationals are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams, typically of nine players each, that take turns batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a playe ...
), becoming a 12-team league for the first time since 1899. In 1969, as a result of its expansion to 12 teams, the National League—which for its first 93 years had competed equally in a single grouping—was reorganized into two
divisions Division or divider may refer to: Mathematics *Division (mathematics) Division is one of the four basic operations of arithmetic, the ways that numbers are combined to make new numbers. The other operations are addition, subtraction, and multi ...
of six teams (respectively named the
National League East The National League East is one of Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball organization and the oldest major professional sports league in the world. , a total of 30 teams play in Major League Baseball& ...
and
West West or Occident is one of the four cardinal directions or points of the compass The points of the compass are an evenly spaced set of horizontal directions (or azimuth An azimuth (; from Arabic اَلسُّمُوت ''as-sumūt'', 'the di ...
, although geographically it was more like North and South), with the division champions meeting in the
National League Championship Series The National League Championship Series (NLCS) is a best-of-seven playoff and one of two League Championship Series The League Championship Series (LCS) is the semifinal round of Major League Baseball postseason, postseason play in Major Lea ...
(an additional round of postseason competition) for the right to advance to the World Series. In 1993 the league expanded to 14 teams, adding the
Colorado Rockies The Colorado Rockies are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player ...

Colorado Rockies
and the
Florida Marlins The Miami Marlins are an American professional baseball team based in Miami Miami (), officially the City of Miami, is a Coast, coastal metropolis located in southeastern Florida in the United States. It is the third most populous metropolit ...
(which became the Miami Marlins shortly after the end of the 2011 season). In 1998, the
Arizona Diamondbacks The Arizona Diamondbacks, often shortened as the D-backs, are an American team based in . The Diamondbacks compete in (MLB) as a member club of the (NL) division. The team plays its home games at , formerly known as Bank One Ballpark. Throu ...
became the league's fifteenth franchise, and the
Milwaukee Brewers The Milwaukee Brewers are an American professional baseball team based in Milwaukee. They compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League Central, Central division. The Brewers are named for t ...
moved from the AL to the NL, giving the NL 16 teams for the next 15 seasons. In 1994, the league was again reorganized, into three geographical divisions (East, West and
Central Central is an adjective usually referring to being in the center (disambiguation), center of some place or (mathematical) object. Central may also refer to: Directions and generalised locations * Central Africa, a region in the centre of Africa ...
, all currently with five teams; from 1994 to 1997 the West had one less team, and from 1998 to 2012, the Central had one more team). A third postseason round was added at the same time: the three division champions plus a wild card team (the team with the best record among those finishing in second place) now advance to the preliminary
National League Division Series In Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is an American professional baseball organization and the oldest of the major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada. A total of 30 teams play in Major League Baseba ...
. Due to a players' strike, however, the postseason was not actually held in 1994. Before the 1998 season, the American League and the National League each added a fifteenth team. Because of the odd number of teams, only seven games could possibly be scheduled in each league on any given day. Thus, one team in each league would have to be idle on any given day. This would have made it difficult for scheduling, in terms of travel days and the need to end the season before October. In order for MLB officials to continue primarily intraleague play, both leagues would need to carry an even number of teams, so the decision was made to move one club from the AL Central to the NL Central. Eventually, Milwaukee agreed (after Kansas City declined) to change leagues; the National League now had 16 teams, the American League 14 with the switch.


Designated hitter rule

Often characterized as being a more "traditional" or "pure" league, the National League did not adopt the
designated hitter In baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams, typically of nine players each, that take turns batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on the fielding team, called the pitcher play ...
rule until the shortened 2020 season. Only the American League previously adopted the rule in 1973. In theory, this meant that the role of the
manager Management (or managing) is the administration of an organization, whether it is a business, a not-for-profit, non-profit organization, or a government body. It is the art and science of managing resources. Management includes the activities ...
was greater in the National League than in the American League, because the NL manager must take offense into account when making pitching substitutions and vice versa. However, this was disputed by some, such as former Detroit Tigers manager
Jim Leyland James Richard Leyland (born December 15, 1944) is an American former professional baseball player, coach Coach may refer to: Guidance/instruction * Coach (sport), a director of athletes' training and activities ** Coach (basketball) * Coaching, ...

Jim Leyland
, who claimed that the American League is more difficult because AL managers are required to know exactly when to pull a pitcher, whereas an NL manager merely pulls his pitcher when that spot comes up in the batting order. Overall, there were fewer
home run In baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on the fielding team (baseball), fielding t ...
s and runs scored in the National League than in the American, due to the presence of the
pitcher In baseball, the pitcher is the player who pitches the Baseball (ball), baseball from the pitcher's mound toward the catcher to begin each play, with the goal of out (baseball), retiring a batter (baseball), batter, who attempts to either make ...

pitcher
in the NL batting order. As the
collective bargaining agreement A collective agreement, collective labour agreement (CLA) or collective bargaining agreement (CBA) is a written contract negotiated through collective bargaining Collective bargaining is a process of negotiation between employers and a group of e ...
came closer to expiring after the 2021 season, owners expressed their intentions to use the designated hitter in all games starting in 2022. In response to the
COVID-19 pandemic The COVID-19 pandemic is an ongoing global pandemic A pandemic (from , , "all" and , , "local people" the 'crowd') is an of an that has spread across a large region, for instance multiple or worldwide, affecting a substantial numbe ...
in 2020, rule changes were instituted in both leagues for the 2020 season, which included an abbreviated 60-game schedule, the use of the designated hitter in all games, and expanded rosters.


Permanent interleague play

For the first 96 years of its coexistence with the American League, National League teams faced their AL counterparts only in exhibition games or in the World Series. Beginning in 1997, however, interleague games have been played during the regular season and count in the standings. As part of the agreement instituting interleague play, the American League's designated-hitter rule is used only in games where the American League team is the home team. In 1999, the offices of American League and National League presidents were discontinued and all authority was vested in the Commissioner's office. The leagues subsequently appointed "honorary" presidents to carry out ceremonial roles such as the awarding of league championship trophies. Additionally, the distinction between AL and NL umpires was erased, and instead all umpires were unified under MLB control. Following these actions, as well as the institution of interleague play, little remains to differentiate between the two leagues. By 2011, MLB had changed its policy on interleague play, deciding to schedule interleague games throughout the season rather than only during specially designated periods. This policy would allow each league to have 15 teams, with one team in each league playing an interleague game on any given day. As a condition of the sale of the Astros to
Jim Crane James Robert Crane (born January 17, 1954) is an American businessman from Houston Houston ( ) is the most populous city in the U.S. state of Texas, fourth-most populous city in the United States, most populous city in the Southern United ...
in November 2011, the team agreed to move to the American League effective with the 2013 season.


Champions

As of the end of the 2021 season, the Dodgers have won the most NL pennants, with 24. Representing the National League against the American, the Cardinals have won the most World Series (11) followed by the Giants (8), Dodgers (7), Pirates (5), and Reds (5). St. Louis also holds the distinction of being the only AA club to defeat an NL club in the 19th-century version of the World Series, having done so against their now-division rival Cubs.


Teams

''Note: Team names are given here according to the convention used by
The Baseball Encyclopedia ''The Baseball Encyclopedia'' is a baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on the fielding ...
, which regularized them into the familiar form of modern team names. However, most teams in the early period had no name, aside from that of the club (as in "Hartford Base Ball Club" or "Athletic Base Ball Club of Philadelphia"), and nicknames like "Beaneaters," "Perfectos" and the many allusions to uniform colors were inventions by the florid sportswriters of the day.''


Charter franchises (1876)

The eight charter teams were the following: * Athletic Club of Philadelphia from National Association, expelled after 1876 season * Boston "Red Stockings" or "Red Caps") from National Association (exist today as the Atlanta Braves) * Chicago "White Stockings" from National Association (exist today as the Chicago Cubs) * Cincinnati "Red Stockings" new franchise, expelled after 1879 season * Hartford Dark Blues, Hartford "Dark Blues" (later the Brooklyn Hartfords) from National Association, folded after 1877 season * Louisville Grays, Louisville "Colonels" or "Grays" new franchise, folded after 1877 season * New York Mutuals, Mutual Club of New York or "Green Stockings" from National Association, expelled after 1876 season * St. Louis Brown Stockings, St Louis "Brown Stockings" from National Association, folded after 1877 season


Other franchises, 1878–1892

Joined in 1878 * Indianapolis Blues, folded after 1878 * Milwaukee Grays, folded after 1878 * Providence Grays, folded after 1885 Joined in 1879 * Buffalo Bisons (NL), Buffalo Bisons, dropped out of the league after 1885 * Cleveland Blues (NL), Forest City of Cleveland, folded after 1884 * Syracuse Stars (National League), Syracuse Stars, folded after 1879 * Troy Trojans (MLB team), Troy Trojans, folded after 1882 Joined in 1880 * Cincinnati Stars, dropped from the National League after the season for refusing to sign a pledge to end beer sales in their park. * Worcester Worcesters, Worcester Ruby Legs, folded after 1882 Joined in 1881 * Detroit Wolverines, folded after 1888 Joined in 1883 * History of the New York Giants (baseball), New York Gothams (exist today as the San Francisco Giants) * History of the Philadelphia Phillies, Philadelphia Quakers (exist today as the Philadelphia Phillies) Joined in 1885 * St. Louis Maroons, joined from U.A. Relocated to Indianapolis for 1887 season as the Indianapolis Hoosiers, folded after 1889 Joined in 1886 * Kansas City Cowboys (National League), Kansas City Cowboys, folded after 1886 * Washington Nationals (1886–1889), Washington Nationals, folded after 1889 Joined in 1887 * History of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Pittsburgh Alleghenys (exist today as the Pittsburgh Pirates), joined from AA Joined in 1889 *
Cleveland Spiders The Cleveland Spiders were an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player ...
, joined from AA, folded after 1899 Joined in 1890 *
Cincinnati Reds The Cincinnati Reds are an American professional baseball team based in Cincinnati. The Reds compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League Central, Central division, and were a charter membe ...

Cincinnati Reds
, joined from AA (exist today) * History of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Brooklyn Grays (exist today as the Los Angeles Dodgers), joined from AA Joined in 1892 * Baltimore Orioles (1882–1899), Baltimore Orioles, joined from AA, contracted after 1899 * Louisville Colonels, joined from AA, contracted after 1899 * St. Louis Cardinals, St. Louis Browns (exist today as the St. Louis Cardinals), joined from AA * Washington Senators (1891–1899), Washington Senators, joined from AA, contracted after 1899


"Classic Eight"

The eight-team lineup established in 1900 remained unchanged through 1952. All franchises are still in the league, with five remaining in the same city. * Boston (nicknamed at various times the "Red Stockings,""Red Caps," "Beaneaters" and "Doves," in 1912 named the Boston Braves, then Milwaukee Braves, now the
Atlanta Braves The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball team based in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The Braves compete in Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is an American professional baseball organization and the oldes ...
) * Brooklyn (variously labeled the "Bridegrooms," "Grooms," "Superbas," "Robins," "Trolley Dodgers," and "Bums," later called the Brooklyn Dodgers, now the
Los Angeles Dodgers The Los Angeles Dodgers are an American professional team based in . The Dodgers compete in (MLB) as a member club of the (NL) division. Established in 1883 in the city of , which later became a borough of , the team joined the NL in 1890 ...
) * Chicago (at first called by reporters the "White Stockings," then "Infants," "Colts," "Orphans," "Remnants" and by 1906 the
Chicago Cubs The Chicago Cubs are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on ...
) *
Cincinnati Reds The Cincinnati Reds are an American professional baseball team based in Cincinnati. The Reds compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League Central, Central division, and were a charter membe ...

Cincinnati Reds
(shortened from early "Red Stockings") * New York Giants (sometimes "Gothams" and occasionally "Maroons," now the San Francisco Giants. "Giants" was in general press usage as early as the 1885 season and is probably the oldest consistent nickname in baseball, depending on how one categorizes "Phillies") * Philadelphia Phillies (variously "Quakers", "Nationals" and "Pearls." Their ultimate name was just a shortening of the conventional plural-form "Philadelphias.") * Pittsburgh Pirates, Pittsburgh (founded in Allegheny, a Pittsburgh suburb, then claimed Pittsburgh as their home city but continued to be referred to as before as "Alleghenys." After "pirating" a player from the Athletics in the Players League collapse in 1890 were tagged "Pirates" in the press.) * St. Louis Cardinals, St. Louis (at various times "Brown Stockings," "Browns," "Red Stockings" and "Reds," and today officially the Cardinals and unofficially "Redbirds")


Expansion, relocation, and renaming, 1953–present

* 1953: History of the Boston Braves, Boston Braves move to Milwaukee * 1958: History of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Brooklyn Dodgers move to Los Angeles and History of the New York Giants (baseball), New York Giants move to San Francisco * 1962: Houston Astros#1962–1964: The Colt Es, Houston Colt .45s and
New York Mets The New York Mets are an American professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club system. It is played in baseball league, lea ...
enfranchised * 1965: Houston Astros, Houston Colt .45s renamed Astros * 1966: History of the Atlanta Braves#Milwaukee, Milwaukee Braves move to Atlanta * 1969:
Montreal Expos The Montreal Expos (french: link=no, Les Expos de Montréal) were a Canadian professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club s ...
and
San Diego Padres The San Diego Padres are an American professional baseball team based in San Diego. The Padres compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League West, West division. Founded in 1969 San Diego P ...
enfranchised * 1993:
Colorado Rockies The Colorado Rockies are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player ...

Colorado Rockies
and
Florida Marlins The Miami Marlins are an American professional baseball team based in Miami Miami (), officially the City of Miami, is a Coast, coastal metropolis located in southeastern Florida in the United States. It is the third most populous metropolit ...
enfranchised * 1998:
Arizona Diamondbacks The Arizona Diamondbacks, often shortened as the D-backs, are an American team based in . The Diamondbacks compete in (MLB) as a member club of the (NL) division. The team plays its home games at , formerly known as Bank One Ballpark. Throu ...
enfranchised * 1998:
Milwaukee Brewers The Milwaukee Brewers are an American professional baseball team based in Milwaukee. They compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League Central, Central division. The Brewers are named for t ...
transfer from the
American League The American League of Professional Baseball Clubs, or simply the American League (AL), is one of two leagues that make up Major League Baseball (MLB) in the United States and Canada. It developed from the Western League (original), Western Leagu ...
. (Before the 1998 season, the American League and the National League each added a fifteenth team. Because of the odd number of teams, only seven games could possibly be scheduled in each league on any given day. Thus, one team in each league would have to be idle on any given day, or there would have to be at least one interleague game almost every day. This would have made it difficult for scheduling. To avoid this problem, Milwaukee agreed to change leagues; this gave the National League 16 teams, the American League 14.) * 2005:
Montreal Expos The Montreal Expos (french: link=no, Les Expos de Montréal) were a Canadian professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club s ...
moved by MLB to Washington, D.C., renamed the
Washington Nationals The Washington Nationals are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams, typically of nine players each, that take turns batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a playe ...
* 2012: Florida Marlins renamed the Miami Marlins * 2013:
Houston Astros The Houston Astros are an American professional baseball team based in Houston. The Astros compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the American League (AL) American League West, West division, having moved to the division i ...
moved to the American League West (Interleague play is expanded to occur throughout the season to accommodate each league; both leagues now have fifteen teams each.)


Current teams


National League East

*
Atlanta Braves The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball team based in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The Braves compete in Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is an American professional baseball organization and the oldes ...
, the oldest continually operating team in North American sports. Known as "Beaneaters" and other nicknames, as original nickname faded and became re-associated with Cincinnati (and later with the
Boston Red Sox The Boston Red Sox are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player ...
). Adopted name "Braves" in 1912. Moved to Milwaukee (1953) and to Atlanta (1966). Prior to the 1994 realignment, the Braves competed in the West division. * Miami Marlins, enfranchised 1993 as the Florida Marlins, changed name to Miami Marlins (2012). *
New York Mets The New York Mets are an American professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club system. It is played in baseball league, lea ...
, enfranchised 1962. * Philadelphia Phillies, enfranchised 1883 and adopted the Phillies name officially in 1884. The team is the oldest continuous, one-name, one-city franchise in American professional sports history, although the Cubs (who adopted their name after the Phillies' establishment) are older, as are the Braves, who have moved twice. *
Washington Nationals The Washington Nationals are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams, typically of nine players each, that take turns batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a playe ...
, enfranchised 1969 as the
Montreal Expos The Montreal Expos (french: link=no, Les Expos de Montréal) were a Canadian professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club s ...
. Moved to Washington, D.C. (2005).


National League Central

*
Chicago Cubs The Chicago Cubs are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on ...
enfranchised 1870 as an independent professional team, chartered into the National Association in 1871, but suspended operations for 1872 and 1873 following the Great Chicago Fire. The team has been continuously active since 1874, making it the oldest continuously active team in its original city in Major League Baseball. It joined the National League as a charter member (1876). Originally called the "Chicago White Stockings" and later the "Chicago Colts" and several other names, the team was first called "Cubs" in 1902. *
Cincinnati Reds The Cincinnati Reds are an American professional baseball team based in Cincinnati. The Reds compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League Central, Central division, and were a charter membe ...

Cincinnati Reds
enfranchised 1882 in American Association, at first tagged "Red Stockings," joined National League (1890). *
Milwaukee Brewers The Milwaukee Brewers are an American professional baseball team based in Milwaukee. They compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League Central, Central division. The Brewers are named for t ...
enfranchised 1969 as the Seattle Pilots in American League, moved to Milwaukee (1970), transferred to National League (1998). *
Pittsburgh Pirates The Pittsburgh Pirates are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a play ...
enfranchised 1882 in American Association, joined National League (1887), dubbed "Pirates" for signing Lou Bierbauer away from the Athletics in 1891. *
St. Louis Cardinals The St. Louis Cardinals are an American professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club system. It is played in baseball league, ...
enfranchised 1882 in American Association, labeled "Brown Stockings" or just "Browns," joined National League (1892), later "Perfectos," eventually "Cardinals" for their red trim, now often "Redbirds."


National League West

*
Arizona Diamondbacks The Arizona Diamondbacks, often shortened as the D-backs, are an American team based in . The Diamondbacks compete in (MLB) as a member club of the (NL) division. The team plays its home games at , formerly known as Bank One Ballpark. Throu ...
enfranchised 1998 *
Colorado Rockies The Colorado Rockies are an American professional baseball Baseball is a bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting (baseball), batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player ...

Colorado Rockies
enfranchised 1993 *
Los Angeles Dodgers The Los Angeles Dodgers are an American professional team based in . The Dodgers compete in (MLB) as a member club of the (NL) division. Established in 1883 in the city of , which later became a borough of , the team joined the NL in 1890 ...
enfranchised 1883 as a minor league team, entered into the American Association as the Brooklyn Atlantics in 1884, soon acquired nickname "Dodgers" (from "trolley dodgers"), joined National League (1890). Also dubbed "Bridegrooms", "Superbas", "Robins" and "Bums" at various times, in addition to "Dodgers". Moved to Los Angeles (1958) *
San Diego Padres The San Diego Padres are an American professional baseball team based in San Diego. The Padres compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) National League West, West division. Founded in 1969 San Diego P ...
enfranchised 1969, sometimes called "Friars" or "Dads." * San Francisco Giants enfranchised in New York City 1883, nearly half of its original players were members of then just disbanded Troy Trojans (MLB team), Troy club, nickname "Giants" in widespread use by 1886, moved to San Francisco (1958)


Presidents


Honorary president

Following the 1999 season, the American and National Leagues were merged with Major League Baseball, and the leagues ceased to exist as business entities. The role of the league president was eliminated. In 2001, Bill Giles (baseball), Bill Giles, son of Warren Giles, was named honorary president of the NL.


See also

* List of American League presidents


See also

* 19th-century National League teams * List of National League pennant winners *
National League Championship Series The National League Championship Series (NLCS) is a best-of-seven playoff and one of two League Championship Series The League Championship Series (LCS) is the semifinal round of Major League Baseball postseason, postseason play in Major Lea ...
(NLCS) *
National League Division Series In Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is an American professional baseball organization and the oldest of the major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada. A total of 30 teams play in Major League Baseba ...
(NLDS) * List of National League Wild Card winners *
Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball Professional baseball is organized baseball in which players are selected for their talents and are paid to play for a specific team or club system. It is played in baseball league, leagu ...
*
American League The American League of Professional Baseball Clubs, or simply the American League (AL), is one of two leagues that make up Major League Baseball (MLB) in the United States and Canada. It developed from the Western League (original), Western Leagu ...
*
World Series The World Series is the annual championship series of Major League Baseball Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball organization and the oldest major professional sports league in the world. , a total of 30 teams play in Ma ...

World Series
* United Baseball League (proposed)


Footnotes


References

* ''The National League Story'', Lee Allen, Putnam, 1961. * ''The American League Story'', Lee Allen, Putnam, 1962. * ''The Baseball Encyclopedia'', published by MacMillan, 1968 and later. {{Authority control National League, Major League Baseball, * Baseball leagues in the United States, * Sports leagues established in 1876 1876 establishments in the United States Professional sports leagues in the United States