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MLB Announces Expanded Playoffs For 2012

FRIDAY, 1:15pm: MLB has officially announced the expanded format. For 2012 only the Division Series will open with two home games for lower ranked teams, and continue with three home games for top ranked teams. This will cut down on travel time and make the Wild Card play-in game possible.

THURSDAY, 6:19 pm: The new playoff system will not be announced today, reports ESPN's Jayson Stark (on Twitter). MLB.com's Barry M. Bloom says talks are still ongoing, with the biggest logistical problem being the time between the end of the regular season and the start of the LDS round. At the moment they only have two days for potential tie-breakers, travel, weather delays, and the Wild Card play-in games. 

WEDNESDAY, 3:32pm: MLBPA executive director Michael Weiner told Bob Nightengale of USA Today that "we'll have an answer in the next couple of days." Nightengale confirms that players and owners have agreed to expand the postseason for 2012.

1:26pm: The agreement isn't final but will happen, adds Rosenthal.  He says the announcement for tomorrow isn't certain, but is possible.  Rosenthal's full story is here.

1:13pm: The MLB playoffs will expand from eight to ten teams for 2012, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, with an announcement coming tomorrow.

The non-division winners in each league with the two best records will be the wild card teams, meaning it is now possible for a third-place team to reach the postseason.  Each's league's wild card pair will face off in a one-game playoff.


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