• Baseball Expanding Playoffs In 2012

    Posted by on April 22nd, 2011 · Comments (13)

    Here’s the details via Newswire -

    Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig expects the playoffs to expand from eight teams to 10 for the 2012 season.

    Selig went public last fall with his support for expanded playoffs, and the matter is subject to collective bargaining with the players’ association.

    “I would say we’re moving to expanding the playoffs, but there’s a myriad of details to work out,” Selig said Thursday in New York at his annual meeting with the Associated Press Sports Editors. “Ten is a fair number.”

    Selig said scheduling is the major issue of discussion, including how many games the new wild-card round would be. The two wild-card teams in each league would meet, and the winners would advance to the following round against division winners.

    “The more we’ve talked about it, I think we’re moving inexorably to that,” he said.

    At first blush, I’m not a fan of this move. I am all in favor of making the road to advancement in the post-season for the wildcard team tougher. I’ve been saying that for years. But, adding another team to the mix is not the answer. Any time you provide the potential of a third-place team with 83 wins a chance to named “World Champions” you’re taking away from the integrity of the title and making the post-season more like a situation where you’re crowning the winner of an invitational tournament.

    Comments on Baseball Expanding Playoffs In 2012

    1. Raf
      April 22nd, 2011 | 7:00 am

      It’s a terrible idea, but then again, how terrible could it be if it makes money?

    2. MJ Recanati
      April 22nd, 2011 | 8:16 am

      Raf wrote:

      It’s a terrible idea, but then again, how terrible could it be if it makes money?

      It’s a terrible idea for baseball and the integrity of the season and the results for posterity but it’s a great move for owners and players who now get an extra bundle of cash to divvy up.

      Bud Selig is a total douche but it’s not surprising that his fellow owners keep on re-electing him as commissioner. Even though he’s horribly corrput and plays favorites, he’s still making people money.

    3. Jim TreshFan
      April 22nd, 2011 | 8:49 am

      Here’s an interesting scenerio: The Yankees play the last game of the 2012 regular season at Boston vs the Red Sox. They lead the BoSox by one game in the standings 101-60 to 100-61, but the season series is even. The Yankees throw CC Sabathia, their ace, and he works 7 innings on 120+ pitches, leaving the game with the score tied. After a few relivers work the 8th Rivera enters with the score still tied to pitch the 9th—and the 10th and the 11th. But the score remains tied until the 12th inning when the Beaneaters push across a run to win the game—and the division—from the Yankees.

      Now as a 101-61 Wild Card team the Bombers must face off in a one game playoff against the 84-78 Oakland A’s who have rested up their best starter and relievers for the contest. But with both Sabathia and Rivera unavailable the Yankees will put their season on the arms of Phil Hughes & company .

    4. MJ Recanati
      April 22nd, 2011 | 8:59 am

      @ Jim TreshFan:
      Baseball is implicitly saying that they’re willing to sacrifice the quality of a World Series just to prolong the playoffs a little bit and make more money in quantity (number of games) instead of quality (potentially the best team from each league).

    5. Jim TreshFan
      April 22nd, 2011 | 10:42 am

      @ MJ Recanati:
      Yes, even if the 2012 World Series features the 84-78 Oakland A’s vs. the 83-79 Milwaukee Brewers with dismal ratings Selig would still pronounce the new system a “success.” But my point is: would you like to see your team’s chances come down to one game with your third or fourth best starter on the mound although you finished the season tied for the best record in MLB?

    6. April 22nd, 2011 | 11:07 am

      At this rate, they might as well get rid of the DIVs, just have one league, and take the top 5 teams in each league and do the playoffs from there. Worst two records among those 5 match up. Winner advances to play against the other remaining three teams.

    7. MJ Recanati
      April 22nd, 2011 | 11:18 am

      Jim TreshFan wrote:

      But my point is: would you like to see your team’s chances come down to one game with your third or fourth best starter on the mound although you finished the season tied for the best record in MLB?

      Would I like to see that? No, of course not. It would be horrible.

    8. Raf
      April 22nd, 2011 | 1:09 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      At this rate, they might as well get rid of the DIVs, just have one league, and take the top 5 teams in each league and do the playoffs from there. Worst two records among those 5 match up. Winner advances to play against the other remaining three teams.

      That won’t work, they need divisional races to sell, along with the wild card races. In fact, I can see MLB adding another division before they get rid of them.

    9. Scout
      April 22nd, 2011 | 3:14 pm

      I see this as just another Selig move to try to make it easier for small market teams to compete successfully. The effect will be for a team with 87 or 88 wins (possibly fewer) to sneak into the play-offs each year. Since a one-game or even three-game series neutralizes most of the advantages of a high-payroll team, there is every likelihood that one of Bud’s small market cronies will find himself deep in the play-offs each year. I also expect such a change to further magnify the value of top starting pitching, still the best bet in a single game or a short series.

    10. Evan3457
      April 22nd, 2011 | 6:09 pm

      Scout wrote:

      I see this as just another Selig move to try to make it easier for small market teams to compete successfully. The effect will be for a team with 87 or 88 wins (possibly fewer) to sneak into the play-offs each year. Since a one-game or even three-game series neutralizes most of the advantages of a high-payroll team, there is every likelihood that one of Bud’s small market cronies will find himself deep in the play-offs each year. I also expect such a change to further magnify the value of top starting pitching, still the best bet in a single game or a short series.

      Another effect will be that as long as they insist on maintaining the 6-division structure, or even increase the number of divisions to 8 if and when they expend to 32 teams, the first team with a losing record will follow in short order.

    11. Evan3457
      April 22nd, 2011 | 6:10 pm

      It nearly happened when the Cards won it all in 2006 with a record of 83-78. It’ll happen sooner or later in a very weak division when they expand to 10, and then twelve playoff teams.

    12. 77yankees
      April 22nd, 2011 | 7:23 pm

      Scout wrote:

      I see this as just another Selig move to try to make it easier for small market teams to compete successfully.

      Not necessarily – the Red Sox would have been the extra wild card last year and the Yankees would have qualified back in 2008.

      Although granted, yes, some of the small market teams may not be as quick to throw in the towel on the season as they have in the past.

    13. April 22nd, 2011 | 7:55 pm

      In the words of J.R. Ewing “once you give up your integrity, the rest is a piece of cake”. Let’s just hurry up and get where we’re going, get rid of divisions all together and have the top eight teams in each league make the playoffs. At some point the regular season starts becoming a farce.

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