25 Facts About MLB


MLB is composed of 30 total teams, divided equally between the National League and the American League (AL), with 29 in the United States and 1 in Canada.

FactSnippet No. 465,339

MLB has the highest total season attendance of any sports league in the world with more than 69.

FactSnippet No. 465,340

MLB oversees Minor League Baseball, which comprises lower-tier teams affiliated with the major league clubs.

FactSnippet No. 465,341

MLB is the second-wealthiest professional sport league by revenue after the National Football League.

FactSnippet No. 465,342

MLB maintains a unique, controlling relationship over the sport, including most aspects of Minor League Baseball.

FactSnippet No. 465,343

Multimedia branch of MLB is MLB Advanced Media, which is based in New York City.

FactSnippet No. 465,344

MLB Productions is a similarly structured wing of the league, focusing on video and traditional broadcast media.

FactSnippet No. 465,345

MLB owns 67 percent of MLB Network, with the other 33 percent split between several cable operators and satellite provider DirecTV.

FactSnippet No. 465,346

In early 1997, MLB decided to assign one new team to each league: Tampa Bay joined the AL and Arizona joined the NL.

FactSnippet No. 465,347

In 2000, the AL and NL were dissolved as legal entities, and MLB became a single, overall league de jure, similar to the National Football League, National Basketball Association (NBA) and National Hockey League (NHL)—albeit with two components called "leagues" instead of "conferences".

FactSnippet No. 465,348

For professional baseball's founding year, MLB uses the year 1869—when the first professional team, the Cincinnati Red Stockings, was established.

FactSnippet No. 465,349

However, MLB rosters did not include any black players through the end of the war.

FactSnippet No. 465,350

MLB selected Jackie Robinson from a list of promising Negro league players.

FactSnippet No. 465,351

MLB banned the signing of women to contracts in 1952, but that ban was lifted in 1992.

FactSnippet No. 465,352

Several MLB teams had been considered for elimination in early talks about contraction, but the Montreal Expos and the Minnesota Twins were the two teams that came closest to folding under the plan.

FactSnippet No. 465,353

Plans for MLB contraction were halted when the Twins landlord was awarded a court injunction that required the team to play its 2002 home games at their stadium.

FactSnippet No. 465,354

MLB owners agreed to hold off on reducing the league's size until at least 2006.

FactSnippet No. 465,355

In June 2021, MLB announced a long-term deal with cryptocurrency exchange FTX, which includes the FTX logo appearing on umpire uniforms during all matches.

FactSnippet No. 465,356

Since 1986 an All-Star team from MLB is sent to a biennial end-of-the-season tour of Japan, dubbed as MLB Japan All-Star Series, playing exhibition games in a best-of format against the All-Stars from Nippon Professional Baseball or recently as of 2014 their national team Samurai Japan.

FactSnippet No. 465,357

In 2008, MLB played the MLB China Series in the People's Republic of China.

FactSnippet No. 465,358

MLB played the MLB Taiwan All-Star Series in Taiwan in November 2011.

FactSnippet No. 465,359

In October 2013, Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune wrote that MLB was considering postseason all-star tours in Taiwan and Korea; baseball is increasing in popularity in both countries.

FactSnippet No. 465,360

In January 2009, MLB launched the MLB Network, featuring news and coverage from around the league, and airing 26 live games in the 2009 season.

FactSnippet No. 465,361

In 2022, MLB made a deal with Apple Inc to launch Friday Night Baseball on its Apple TV+ streaming service, and NBC Sports to broadcast MLB Sunday Leadoff, a package of early Sunday afternoon games on Peacock.

FactSnippet No. 465,362

MLB's streaming internet video service is subject to the same blackout rules.

FactSnippet No. 465,363