1989 January

5th  Three weeks after signing a record 4-year, $1.1 billion network television contract with CBS, major league baseball signs a $400 million contract with ESPN that will put 175 games per year on cable television beginning in 1990.

9th  Johnny Bench and Carl Yastrzemski are elected to the Hall of Fame by the BBWAA in their first year of eligibility. Bench was named on 96.4 percent of the ballots, the 3rd-highest figure in history behind Ty Cobb and Hank Aaron.

17th  Free-agent Claudell Washington leaves the Yankees to sign a 3-year contract with the Angels.

26th  Last season’s tougher balk rules are rescinded, and the rule is returned to its pre-1988 form.

29th  The game-winning RBI is dropped as an official statistic after 9 years of use. The Mets Keith Hernandez is the all-time leader with 129.