The 1994 World Series would have been the championship series of Major League Baseball's (MLB) 1994 season, but it was canceled on September 14 of that year due to a strike by the MLB Players Association that started on August 12. It was only the second time in MLB history that a World Series was not played in a given season (the first being in 1904).
This was to have been the first year of a regularly scheduled three-tier playoff system, with the National League and American League divided into three divisions (East, Central, and West) at the start of the 1994 season. (An unscheduled three-tier system was used in 1981 due to the shortening of the season by a mid-season labor dispute.) The new playoff system (involving a wild card team in each league) did not go into effect until the 1995 postseason. Had the postseason taken place based on team records as of August 11, the playoff bracket would have been as follows:
|Division Series||League Championship Series||World Series|
|East||New York Yankees|
|Central||Chicago White Sox|
|West||Los Angeles Dodgers|
Because division champions from 1994 are unofficial, the Atlanta Braves are officially credited with winning 14 consecutive division titles from 1991 to 2005, winning the NL West in the final three years of the two-division system and then winning 11 consecutive NL East titles from 1995 to 2005. At the time of the season's cancellation, however, the Braves were in second place in the NL East at 68-46, six games behind the Montreal Expos. The 11 titles from 1995 to 2005 are an MLB record nonetheless. The Braves had a 2½ game lead over the Houston Astros for the NL wild card at the time the rest of the season was canceled.
Although the season ended abruptly, individual awards were still given, with Frank Thomas and Jeff Bagwell as league MVPs; David Cone and Greg Maddux as league Cy Young Award winners; and Bob Hamelin and Raúl Mondesí as league Rookie of the Year winners, each in the American League and National League, respectively.
The Baseball Writers' Association of America named managers of the year, which went to Buck Showalter of the New York Yankees, and Felipe Alou of the Montreal Expos, whose team's had the best record in each league when the season ended. Alou was additionally selected as manager of the year by the Associated Press, with Showalter finishing second. As All-Star Game managers are, by tradition, the managers of the previous year's league champions, Alou and Showalter were given the honor of managing in the 1995 All-Star Game.
The 1994 World Series was scheduled to air on ABC, in the first year of a six-year-long joint venture with Major League Baseball, ABC, and NBC called "The Baseball Network." Because this Series was cancelled, ABC and NBC shared broadcast rights to the 1995 World Series, after which the joint venture was ended, and Fox started televising MLB games the following season. Fox and NBC would alternate World Series telecasts from 1996 up to 2000, after which Fox held exclusive rights to all subsequent editions.
Dating back to the mid 1930s, home-field advantage in the World Series went to the National League champion in even-numbered years and the American League champion in odd-numbered years. The 1994 World Series was therefore scheduled to open in the NL city, but as the 1994 post-season was cancelled due to a players' union strike, this pattern was interrupted and reversed, with home-field advantage for the 1995 World Series assigned to the NL champion.
The World Series was supposed to start tonight.
Because of the expanded playoffs, including the new wild-card round, the World Series schedule had been flipped this season to open again at the home of the AL champion.