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Expansion Could Trigger Re-Alignment, Longer Postseason

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40 minutes ago, tiger337 said:

You can penalize wildcards by not having wildcards.  

Let them all be wild'cards.

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1 hour ago, Keepleyland2 said:

Money and tradition are not mutually exclusive. Especially when you consider some of those broken rivalries listed are considered preimum games in attendance. 

I also agree something is going to have to be broken somewhere, hence why we are in the central not in the east. But, that doesn't mean you have to break 19 rivalries. 

And the playoffs are just weird in your set up. Ok so one wild card gets a buy, the other four play each other. It makes plenty of sense after the first round with matchups and I get all that. But, its really weird and I'm not sure fair before the group of 8. 

More than one wild card can get a bye.  I'd rack it up according to winning percentage, not geography.

I think one game play ins are weird unless they are true game 163s.

Colorado finished one game ahead of Milwaukee and got a playoff spot because of it.  Arizona finished one game ahead of Chicago but Arizona has to play in the play-in game to get to the round that Chicago starts in.  Where is the logic in that?

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18 minutes ago, Casimir said:

More than one wild card can get a bye.  I'd rack it up according to winning percentage, not geography.

I think one game play ins are weird unless they are true game 163s.

Colorado finished one game ahead of Milwaukee and got a playoff spot because of it.  Arizona finished one game ahead of Chicago but Arizona has to play in the play-in game to get to the round that Chicago starts in.  Where is the logic in that?

They had different schedules.  It is entirely possible for a team with one extra loss to actually be a better team based on the strength of competition.

Besides, the difference in one extra win 162 games is really small.

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6 minutes ago, Mr. Bigglesworth said:

They had different schedules.  It is entirely possible for a team with one extra loss to actually be a better team based on the strength of competition.

Besides, the difference in one extra win 162 games is really small.

Sure,. I understand the difference in schedules.  Just eyeballing the competition with the division, I would venture to guess Arizona's schedule was tougher, at least from that perspective.

1/162th is a small difference, no doubt.  But if it leads to the difference in playing a 1 game winner take all vs avoiding that, its a bit more magnified.

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49 minutes ago, Casimir said:

I don''t like penalizing wild cards that finish with better records than division winners.

But if they play a different schedule, their record is misleading. Just like it was in the old days with 2 divisions in each league. Many of those years had a weak team barely over .500 from the West Division playing an Eastern powerhouse team. 

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Problem solved:  A Climax Series.

The Japanese playoffs are super unfair

Quote

 

By Craig CalcaterraOct 19, 2017, 2:26 PM EDT

I know a little about Japanese baseball. Not a lot, mind you. Like, I couldn’t hold my own with people who actually watch it or report on it or whatever, but I could explain some of the broad differences and similarities between the NPB and the U.S. majors.  I can say a few things about how the two leagues compare competitively speaking. I can name some stars and (I think) all the clubs. But there’s, quite obviously, a ton I don’t know.

A thing I did not know until today: the NPB playoffs are really messed up.

The NPB is divided into two leagues, the Central and the Pacific, with the winner of each league facing off in the Japan Series. Like the U.S. majors, they have preliminary playoff rounds in each league. Each league has three playoff teams, with the second and third seed teams playing a series first, and the winner of that series playing the top seed — the team with the best record in the league — in what is called the Climax Series.

Here’s the weird part: the higher-seeded team in the Climax Series — the team which won the league in the regular season — gets every single playoff game at home. What’s more, that team begins the Climax Series with an automatic 1-0 advantage. So, yes, it’s a seven-game series on paper, but one of the teams only has to win three games to advance to the Japan Series.

Oh, in Japan, they also have no problems ending a playoff game early if it rains. That’s what happened in the Central League Climax Series last night, where the lower-seeded Yokohama BayStars took on the league champ Hiroshima Carp. Here’s the report from Jason Coskrey of The Japan Times:

The rainy conditions in Hiroshima caused the umpires to stop play for over 30 minutes and ultimately call the game after five innings, minutes after the Carp put three runs on the board. Just like that, it was over. The Carp won 3-0, with Yokohama robbed of the four innings (at least) it would’ve had to try and rally.

Even better: as Coskrey notes, there are five days in between the end of the Climax Series and the beginning of the Japan Series, so there is no reason they could not suspend a game and resume it the next day. They just choose not to. The upshot: the Carp were staked to a 2-0 series lead despite the fact that they had only played five innings of baseball. UPDATE: they played a full game today, the BayStars won, so now it’s 2-1 Hiroshima.

Imagine if that happened in the NLCS. Imagine if the Dodgers began the series with a 1-0 lead over the Cubs and played all of their games in Los Angeles. Imagine there was a freak L.A. storm and it ended one of the game in the fifth inning, right after Justin Turner hit a homer. I’m pretty sure people would riot.

Kinda makes our complaints about the replay system seem rather quaint, eh?

 

 

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I would argue the significance of being staked to a 1-0 lead in the series means more in Japan than the US in the hypothetical, not because games are called due to inclement weather more frequency, but rather because games can end in ties.

A tie really hurts the lower seeded team's chances, because they now have 6 road games to get to 4 wins.

 

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Definitely not a fan of all this. The post-season doesn't need to be longer or complicated. And honestly, I don't think any of the major American sports should be adding teams (the NBA should probably be contracting teams at this point). I say get rid of divisions entirely. They're hokey. Created in a day when traveling to the next game meant sitting on a bus for hours. It's not necessary anymore. Abolish divisions, and just have a running table. Top 3 make the postseason, #4 and #5 do a one game playoff, etc. Whatever combination you want to do, it would be more interesting then the current set up imo

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On 10/22/2017 at 12:32 AM, FloridaTigers said:

Definitely not a fan of all this. The post-season doesn't need to be longer or complicated. And honestly, I don't think any of the major American sports should be adding teams (the NBA should probably be contracting teams at this point). I say get rid of divisions entirely. They're hokey. Created in a day when traveling to the next game meant sitting on a bus for hours. It's not necessary anymore. Abolish divisions, and just have a running table. Top 3 make the postseason, #4 and #5 do a one game playoff, etc. Whatever combination you want to do, it would be more interesting then the current set up imo

Divisions will never go away because they create the illusion that more teams have a chance to make the playoffs (not really sure that's true most years).  For the players, I think playing in different time zones throws them off, so I still think it's an issue for them.  

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25 minutes ago, tiger337 said:

Divisions will never go away because they create the illusion that more teams have a chance to make the playoffs (not really sure that's true most years).  For the players, I think playing in different time zones throws them off, so I still think it's an issue for them.  

I don’t know if the illusion you refer to actually exists. I suspect than fans who monitor the stuff have looked at the division race as well as the wild card race. And the wild card race is essentially one big division. 

But I agree that there will always be some form of divisions. I don’t think MLB is strongly committed to having three divisions per league, though. I think the likely result of expansion would be to go to two divisions per league. 

They aren’t going to make the postseason smaller. We know that for sure. But expanding it to six teams per league seems possible. They could do a few different things with four wild cards. Having the four wild cards play each other in a wild card round has its problems, but it isn’t all that different than having two wild cards play each other. In either case there is the chance that the second best team in the league is stuck having to win its wild card round. 

So I think I would probably stick with five teams per league. That would create a couple problems, though. In a situation where the 3 seed is in a race against the 2 seed for the division, it doesn’t really matter. They will still end up playing each other in the Division Series. The top seed gets the advantage of playing the 4/5 seed that had the wild card game. That’s fine. But a problem arises if the 3 and 4 seed end up with the same record. You’d have to have a one game playoff, maybe, to determine which team avoids the wildcard game. I suppose you could use a head to head to tiebreaker or other form of tiebreaker to avoid that. That wouldn’t bother me. 

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6 hours ago, tiger337 said:

Divisions will never go away because they create the illusion that more teams have a chance to make the playoffs (not really sure that's true most years).  For the players, I think playing in different time zones throws them off, so I still think it's an issue for them.  

Abolish divisions and half the league is out of contention by Memorial Day.

Thinking back to the 1960s when they first went to divisions, I think Bill Veeck argued in favor of divisions by saying "you can't promote a twelfth-place team."

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1 hour ago, TJ_TJ said:

Abolish divisions and half the league is out of contention by Memorial Day.

Out of contention for what?

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1 minute ago, Shelton said:

Out of contention for what?

Pretty much anything.

Of course most intelligent fans know this is mostly true for all intents and purposes already, but the huge majority of MLB's ticket buyers and teevee viewers are not super-informed fans and not able to differentiate between being in "distant contention for your division title" to being a "serious contender for the world's championship."

 

 

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1 hour ago, TJ_TJ said:

Abolish divisions and half the league is out of contention by Memorial Day.

 

No, they wouldn't.  If you have 5 or 6 teams in each league making the playoffs, pretty much everybody will still be in the race by Memorial day and there will likely be a race going down to the last week of the season.  As Shelton pointed out earlier, the wild card races are really the same as not having divisions.  The only time the divisions create an extra race is win you have a crappy division where nobody is much above .500 and those teams don't deserve to be in a race.  

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