As the post all-star game stretch of the MLB moves closer towards the playoffs, there is a myriad of proposals out there for realigning the playoff set-up. Suggestions include splitting up divisions, lessening the number of divisions, and even getting rid of divisions. But I think each of these is too brash of a shake-up.
Playoffs need to be a privilege but still be attainable. Having only a single wild-card team puts way too much pressure on teams to win their division (just think of how the Rays and Jays feel about always playing second fiddle to the Yankees and Red Sox). So, I believe the best way to adjust the playoffs is to add an extra wild-card playoff team to each league. Then, there would be a wild-card round that is a best-of-3 in the AL and NL.
This plan would add just the right amount of teams to the playoffs, and by making it a best-of-3, it wouldn’t stretch the pitchers too thin or push the playoffs into cold weather. From a market perspective, this would definitely be a positive because more cities would become involved in the sport, and more Cinderella runs would be possible which is always intriguing. After the wild-card round, simply keep the rest of playoff allignment the same.
Bud Selig has in fact mentioned adding more teams to the playoffs in the near future. Hopefully, Commisioner Selig’s idea will soon become reality.
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