February 10, 2020

NY Post: "MLB Plotting Playoff Expansion — With Reality TV Twist"

MLB takes the next step in its guaranteed-to-fail plan to convince people who have never cared much about baseball to care a lot about baseball. For unknown reasons, those people are most important.

When will MLB realize the obvious - Not everyone cares about baseball! - and stop dreaming up new ways to destroy the game?

Joel Sherman, Post, February 10, 2020:
MLB is seriously weighing a move from five to seven playoff teams in each league beginning in 2022, The Post has learned.

In this concept, the team with the best record in each league would receive a bye to avoid the wild-card round and go directly to the Division Series. The two other division winners and the wild card with the next best record would each host all three games in a best-of-three wild-card round. So the bottom three wild cards would have no first-round home games.

The division winner with the second-best record in a league would then get the first pick of its opponent from those lower three wild cards, then the other division winner would pick, leaving the last two wild cards to play each other.

To use the AL last season as an example, the Astros with the best record would have received the bye. The Yankees, with the second-best record, would have had the choice to pick from among the Rays, [Cleveland] and Red Sox. ... It would create a ton of strategy and interest, and this is what MLB wants to sell. The Twins would then pick next as the other division winner, and then the A's with the best wild-card record would play the team not chosen by the Yankees or Twins.

The plan is to have this all play out on a show on the Sunday night the regular season ends and have representatives picking teams on live TV — think the NCAA selection show, but just with the teams making the selections. ...

There would be six best-of-three series. ... Game 2 would be a clinch scenario for one team and if there were a Game 3, it would be sudden death for both clubs. ... [M]any team officials had complained since the onset of the wild-card sudden death in 2012 that no team should be eliminated in one game. ...

In 2019, attendance was down for a seventh straight year. Many factors have led to the dip, but  ... MLB wants to have as many regular-season games matter as possible. ...
So if this was in place in 2019, both the Twins and the Yankees have their 100+-win seasons riding on a best-of-3 roll of the dice? (A best-of-5 crapshoot is not much better, but what are you gonna do?)

It's official. I miss Bud Selig.

And I despise Bud Selig.

But wait ... I have another idea:
* ALL thirty teams make the playoffs! Amazing!!

* The teams participate in an intricate schedule of 162 games each (beginning in April, with 81 home and 81 road games).

* At the end of that mega-"round" (which would last six months), the top finishers in each division would advance.

* The team with the best record in each league would get a bye.

* The two other division winners in each league would play a best-of-5 LDS (2-2-1, with the team with the better record hosting Games 1-2-5).

* The winners of those series would play the team with the top record in its league in a best-of-7 LCS.

* The two pennant winners would meet in a best-of-7 World Series.


wallythe24 said...

I saw this earlier today on social media. I'm still thinking is it the 1st of April ?

GK said...

Year 2040

Shallow pundit (oh screw it, it is CHB with dentures on ): "MLB is dead because the kids of today have attention deficit and refuse to sit even for an hour long game. The new curse is here! the curse of the Gen A-er" ( Gen-A succeeded the Gen-Z-ers or whatever the shit they called them).

Allan (right here on JoS): screw/fuck you CHB, baseball is dead because for more than 4 decades, owners milked the teet of public subsidies while screwing over cities and getting rich. Minor league owners did the same refusing to pay kids a living wage, except for the select few who got $10+ millions as signing bonus. Every kid who got burnt out in the minor league was a living breathing example to siblings, relatives, friends and neighbors. So fewer and fewer kids signed up to play. The owners knew all along that business of baseball was a legalized Ponzi scheme.They could cash out their stakes at anytime and walk away with no loss. And they did.

Michael said...

no wildcards in your idea, huh? I like the concept but I can't let go of the fact that 2004 doesn't happen without a wild card. Also gives meaning to games second- and third-place teams play in late summer...But I wouldn't go past that.

Kara said...

This is the dumbest fucking thing. It's not a Choose Your Own Adventure book.

allan said...

I know, I know ... but I fucking hate the wild card.
And I hate the DH ... and I hated it as Ortiz was raking as our DH.

allan said...

Allan (right here on JoS)

I'm not sure what to make of the fact that you have me posting at JoS when I'm 77 years old.

GK said...

I'm not sure what to make of the fact that you have me posting at JoS when I'm 77 years old.

Yes, I know. I have been on this site daily and faithfully since 2003. So hope springs eternal.

allan said...

I have been on this site daily and faithfully since 2003

Seriously? Wow. ... I should send you a prize.

GK said...

No prize needed,A My prize is all the good stuff I get to read. For the past several years I get to keep up on the Sox only with your game recaps and highlights on MLB and occasional radio broadcast, no TV.

allan said...

Joe Posnanski, JoeBlogs email list, Feburary 11:

I’ll save most of my thoughts on this for later, but you have probably seen MLB float the idea of a new postseason plan. ...

I don’t want to get too deep into this now but it’s fair to say that I absolutely hate every single part of this. I know that this could get me tabbed as an old man shouting at clouds, but considering it’s the idea of an old man shouting at clouds I’m willing to take the chance.

I’m all for change. I’m all for DRASTIC change. I think baseball could use some vibrant new ideas, even uncomfortable ones.

But nothing in this plan interests me. Nothing.

Four more playoff teams? Yuck. I loathe it on every level. It rewards mediocrity. It makes the regular season less meaningful. It guarantees that, within a short period of time, a team with a losing record will not only make the playoffs but will probably get hot and win the World Series.

And what GOOD will it do? I suppose the goal is to make more teams compete, a worthy cause, but you know what? It won’t. You think teams are going to work harder to compete for the chance to play three games at a better team’s ballpark? Nah. Do you think the Chicago White Sox or Anaheim Angels would have been big spenders down the stretch in an effort to catch the 78-84 Rangers for the honor getting to go to Yankee Stadium for three games? Give me a break.

Here’s the deal: If you really want to do this, to add playoff teams, then you need to go all in. It makes absolutely no sense to play 162 games to eliminate about half the teams in baseball. If you’re going to do this, cut the season down to 120 games. Or 100 games. Or 81 games. Play a big postseason tournament with seven-game series all the way. Turn MLB into the NBA. I don’t think that’s a winner of a plan, but at least that would be a plan. This is nothing.

The second part, the choosing of your opponent, is simply the stupidest idea I’ve heard floated from MLB in a long time. It’s not stupid because it’s edgy or new. I wish it WAS edgy and new. No, it’s stupid because it will be absurdly predictable — unless there’s some odd circumstance, teams will ALWAYS just choose the team with the worst record — and it’s stupid because we’re talking about whether the second-best team in the league wants to play the fifth, sixth or seventh best team. WHO CARES?

There are so many cool, interesting, fresh, challenging ideas out there to make baseball more appealing to new fans. This idea will accomplish nothing good for the game. And, I totally expect MLB to do it.


For the record, I do not support Joe's non-winning idea to reduce the regular season.