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Old 10-04-2018, 01:08 PM   #1
drksd4848
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Playoff format that MLB should implement (but they won't)

After being dumb-founded by the fact that MLB has to have a tie-breaker game just for playoff POSITIONING. Not to see who actually MAKES the playoffs (i.e. that game between the Brewers and the Cubs on Monday was stupid)

- Go back to the pre-69 format. Eliminate the divisions, because divisions don't matter. Regional rivalries will always exist no matter what.

- The team with the best record wins the Pennant. They are the league champions.

- Four other teams make the playoffs. (any seasonal tie-breakers would be determined by head to head play.

- 2nd Seed plays the 5th seed, 3rd seed plays 4th seed (one game winner take all)

- The team left standing plays the League champion in a best of 7. Winner onto the World Series.

- The new play-in games happen on consecutive days. (Tuesday, Wednesday) League Championship on Thursday to maximize the advantage of the Pennant winner.

Baseball needs to understand that less is more. 162 games, then a POSITIONING game, then play-in games, then 5 game series, then a 7 game series, then another 7 game series is TOTAL BASEBALL FATIGUE. By the time we get to the World Series, no one cares anymore.

Major League baseball's hubris will be it's downfall. And they would deserve it.

Also:
- Give baseball coverage back to NBC
- Eliminate the backstop ads and outfield fence ads.
- Starting Pitchers should be conditioned to pitch deeper into games.
- Lose the DH.
- Contract two to four teams.

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Old 10-04-2018, 01:15 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drksd4848 View Post
Go back to the pre-69 format. Eliminate the divisions, because divisions don't matter. Regional rivalries will always exist no matter what.
I'd be concerned about travel time and fatigue if I had to fly across the continent as often as balanced scheduling would require.
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Old 10-04-2018, 01:21 PM   #3
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I'd be concerned about travel time and fatigue if I had to fly across the continent as often as balanced scheduling would require.

Yeah, fair point. My rub with the unbalanced schedule is it skews the wildcard winners/division winners. If the Indians played a balanced schedule, would they have as good a record? But, yes. Travel fatigue would be a concern.

But a solution to that could be to split the teams into regional leagues. That could also be sacrilege to purists.

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Old 10-04-2018, 06:20 PM   #4
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Title of the thread should be "Playoff format you'd like MLB to implement". "Should" is an overly, self-important premise.
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Old 10-04-2018, 11:59 PM   #5
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I would rather they play a tie breaker even if it is just for position. I would rather have the team beat the other team than win on some weird tie breaking rule. Makes it more games that a wild card has to win which i can agree with. Though i prefer baseball end in october i can argue against it.
I dont think fans lose interest. I think its the opposite. More teams in and you have more fans interested. However it needs to be balanced. I dont think i would like an nba or nhl type playoff.
Personally i kinda like it when it was just the East and West in the leagues.
Though Atlanta in the NL west was a little strange.
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Old 10-05-2018, 12:04 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drksd4848 View Post
After being dumb-founded by the fact that MLB has to have a tie-breaker game just for playoff POSITIONING.
It wasn't just for positioning. It was also for the right to get a bye through the Wild Card Game round. So something was at stake.

Had the pre-2012 playoff format been in place, i.e. only one wild card qualifier per league, then only the Dodgers and Rockies would have played a tie-breaking game, with the winner getting the division title and post-season berth and the loser eliminated. No game would have been played between the Brewers and Cubs, as both were in the post-season regardless. The Cubs would have been the division winner based on head-to-head record, and the Brewers the wild card.

The Division Series would have had these match-ups:

Indians vs. Red Sox
Yankees vs. Astros
Dodgers vs. Cubs
Brewers vs. Braves
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Old 10-05-2018, 02:22 AM   #7
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Add Montreal, Vancouver, Portland, Austin, Mexico City, and Nashville as expansion teams. Increase playoff field from 10 to 16. Introduce a 1 vs. 8, 2 vs 7 3 vs 6, 5 vs 4 playoff format with 5 game 1st round, 5 game 2nd round 7 game 3rd round and 7 game world series. Decrease spring training from one month to 2 weeks. Decrease regular season from 162 games to 154 games.
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Old 10-05-2018, 11:45 AM   #8
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I liked it when there were 4 divisions and the winners made it to the playoffs. It made just making the playoffs something to celebrate. IMO only the best teams in the league based on regular season should be allowed to compete.

In basketball and hockey it's a joke. The mindset there is only the worst teams in the league can't compete. If you like that, fine. But making the playoffs is ho hum at best.

Football is half a joke. Too many small divisions.
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Old 10-05-2018, 12:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drksd4848 View Post
Yeah, fair point. My rub with the unbalanced schedule is it skews the wildcard winners/division winners. If the Indians played a balanced schedule, would they have as good a record? But, yes. Travel fatigue would be a concern.
I think there are pluses and minuses. Unbalanced schedules are more fair for picking the division winners, but less fair for picking the wild cards.

Think about college football. Your conference division champion is determined by conference record only. Non-conference games don't count.

But bowl eligibility (as well as the polls and the CFB) look at all your games. It's more analog to a wild card. And the unbalanced football schedules there cause a lot of controversy.
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Old 10-05-2018, 02:33 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by monkeyman576 View Post
Add Montreal, Vancouver, Portland, Austin, Mexico City, and Nashville as expansion teams. Increase playoff field from 10 to 16. Introduce a 1 vs. 8, 2 vs 7 3 vs 6, 5 vs 4 playoff format with 5 game 1st round, 5 game 2nd round 7 game 3rd round and 7 game world series. Decrease spring training from one month to 2 weeks. Decrease regular season from 162 games to 154 games.
Disagree with all of that.


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In basketball and hockey it's a joke.
The NHL for many years took in 16 of its 21 teams into the post-season—76.2% of the league. The ECHL, in its 2013-14 season, had an imbalanced structure: 13 teams in the Eastern Conference and 8 teams in the Western Conference. It used a conference-based playoff format, with 8 teams from each conference qualifying for the playoffs. So 8 of the 13 teams in the Eastern Conference qualified, and 8 out of 8 in the Western Conference.

Yes, the entire Western Conference qualified for the playoffs.

(The ECHL is a fun league to look at in terms of playoff formats, because it's had quite a few weird ones.)
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Old 10-05-2018, 04:05 PM   #11
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I personally feel 4 teams is too little. But 8 too many. I actually believe baseball is one of the few leagues that gets the amount of postseason teams right. There is enough feeling of accomplishment when you qualify. But it "penalizes" you for not winning the division. And it keeps the fans of the individual teams engaged longer because they aren't out of it too early. This year was the exception with the AL so top heavy. But most of the time 2/3's of the league is still a red hot September away from making it interesting the last week of the season. And that is more important in baseball since it is so regionalized.
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Old 10-05-2018, 06:05 PM   #12
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I personally feel 4 teams is too little. But 8 too many. I actually believe baseball is one of the few leagues that gets the amount of postseason teams right. There is enough feeling of accomplishment when you qualify. But it "penalizes" you for not winning the division.
It could penalize the wild card more. For example, instead of a 2-3-2 format for the best-of-seven series, when involving a wild card change it to 2-2-3, giving the division winner five out of seven games at home instead of four.
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Old 10-05-2018, 09:11 PM   #13
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I'm pretty good with the current playoff setup and oppose expansion, but the one thing I really dislike is the highly unbalanced divisional schedule. It really drives down the records of teams in the most competitive divisions and inflates the records of teams in the least competitive divisions. Plus, it's boring as a fan to see your team play the same teams so many times.
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Old 10-05-2018, 11:12 PM   #14
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It could penalize the wild card more. For example, instead of a 2-3-2 format for the best-of-seven series, when involving a wild card change it to 2-2-3, giving the division winner five out of seven games at home instead of four.
Not sure I agree with that. Look @ what would have happened w/the Cubs. They not only tied for the division, but it was also a tie for the best record in the National. I'm not sure it should go that far just because they had the misfortune to have another team just as good as they are in the same division. The one & done format is sufficient to me.
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Old 10-05-2018, 11:41 PM   #15
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I'm pretty good with the current playoff setup and oppose expansion, but the one thing I really dislike is the highly unbalanced divisional schedule. It really drives down the records of teams in the most competitive divisions and inflates the records of teams in the least competitive divisions. Plus, it's boring as a fan to see your team play the same teams so many times.
Unfortunately, with the three-division setup, there is no good answer to this due to the high ratio of non-division to division teams. Balancing intradivision and interdivision game totals is much easier with a two-division alignment.
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Old 10-06-2018, 11:07 AM   #16
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Unfortunately, with the three-division setup, there is no good answer to this due to the high ratio of non-division to division teams. Balancing intradivision and interdivision game totals is much easier with a two-division alignment.
I'm not saying there needs to be perfect balance. With interleague games, it seems to me there are some degrees of freedom to play with. For instance:

* 13 games against each division opponent (52 games)
* 8 games against each interdivision opponent (80 games)
* 2 games against each interleague opponent (30 games)
Total: 162 games

Then you also get a balanced interleague schedule, which, if we're going to have interleague, is better than the current setup. There won't be perfect balance home and away either interleague or intradivision, but there isn't now either. And there would be a lot of 4-game series.
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Old 10-06-2018, 11:30 AM   #17
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* 13 games against each division opponent (52 games)
* 8 games against each interdivision opponent (80 games)
* 2 games against each interleague opponent (30 games)
Total: 162 games
It will be impossible to create a schedule with these parameters. You need lots and lots of 3-game series, which this will not give you.
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Old 10-06-2018, 11:57 AM   #18
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It could penalize the wild card more. For example, instead of a 2-3-2 format for the best-of-seven series, when involving a wild card change it to 2-2-3, giving the division winner five out of seven games at home instead of four.
Agreed but 3-2-2 for the division winner.
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Old 10-06-2018, 12:14 PM   #19
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The NHL for many years took in 16 of its 21 teams into the post-season—76.2% of the league.
I remember this. The first 4 teams in every division made the playoffs. The Minnesota Northstars went to the Stanley Cup finals with a 27-39-14 record.
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Old 10-06-2018, 03:55 PM   #20
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I'm not saying there needs to be perfect balance.
I wasn't suggesting perfect balance, just that trying to find a good compromise between number of games against individual division and non-division clubs and total number of division and non-division games is harder with three divisions versus two.

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With interleague games, it seems to me there are some degrees of freedom to play with. For instance:

* 13 games against each division opponent (52 games)
* 8 games against each interdivision opponent (80 games)
* 2 games against each interleague opponent (30 games)
Total: 162 games
Wouldn't work for an MLB schedule, as it doesn't like two-game series, and your format would call for a lot of those. Its schedules aim for 52 or 54 series in total played by each club. So any breakdown has to fit within that framework.


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I remember this. The first 4 teams in every division made the playoffs. The Minnesota Northstars went to the Stanley Cup finals with a 27-39-14 record.
It started in 1979-80 after the absorption of four teams from the expiring WHA. The NHL grew to 21 teams, and expanded its playoff field from 12 to 16. It's been at 16 playoff teams ever since, though the manner in which those 16 teams qualify has changed several times over the years.
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