Major League Baseball has proposed expanding the postseason field to fourteen teams in collective bargaining discussions with the Players Association, reports Jesse Rogers of ESPN. That’s hardly a surprise, as Commissioner Rob Manfred has publicly advocated for expanding the playoffs (reportedly preferring a 14-team setup) going back to last year, when the league and MLBPA agreed to a 16-team playoff during the shortened 2020 season.
Under the proposed format, the top seed in each league would receive a bye — as is the case with the NFL’s current structure. However, Rogers adds that MLB’s proposal would allow the other two division winners in each league to choose which Wild Card team they’d prefer to face in the first round, which would take the form of a three-game series. The division winner with the second-best record in each league would have its pick of any of the four Wild Card clubs in its league; the final division winner would pick to face one of the other three Wild Card teams; the two Wild Card teams remaining would face one another.
The league has long been expected to prioritize an expanded playoff field in collective bargaining talks. An increased number of postseason games comes with an associated uptick in gate and television revenue, an obvious appeal for ownership groups. The effects for players could be more mixed. While some players could stand to benefit from increased playoff shares, Rogers notes that the MLBPA is concerned that an expanded playoff field could reduce the incentive for teams to aggressively try to bolster their roster.
A broader playoff field increases every team’s odds of getting into the postseason, and front offices may find the greater odds a disincentive to upgrading their roster via free agency or trade. Small-sample postseason series have an inherent high level of randomness. It seems the fear among some on the players’ side is that teams could be satisfied to build a slightly above-average roster (which would stand a much greater chance of making the postseason in a 14-team field than under the current 10-team system) and hope that a hot streak can carry them deep into the playoffs.
MLB, on the other hand, contends that the first-round bye would offer such a significant advantage to the teams with the best record in each league that very good clubs would remain motivated to improve. Meanwhile, the expanded field could offer a greater incentive for teams with mediocre rosters to add short-term impact, since the proposal would significantly increase those teams’ chances of getting to the postseason at all.
Rogers notes that the expanded playoff proposal has been on the table for months, but he reports that MLB recently put forward a new suggestion: a lottery for the top three amateur draft choices. Rather than setting the draft order as the inverse of the league standings — as is the current setup — this proposal would introduce a weighted system that injects more randomness into the process. Teams with the worst records would still have a greater chance of securing higher picks, but any non-playoff team would have a chance at a top three selection.
That offer is in response to players’ concerns that the current system rewards teams that orchestrate long-term rebuilds with perennially high draft choices. Of course, it’s not entirely clear that a weighted lottery would serve as much of a disincentive for tanking, since teams would still have higher probabilities of top picks with worse records.
Rogers’ colleague at ESPN, Jeff Passan, shed some further light on CBA talks this afternoon. Passan reports that the league recently offered a slight raise over the luxury tax thresholds set in the 2016-21 CBA. That’s a turnaround from the league’s earlier efforts to tie a lowered tax threshold to a soft salary floor, an offer the MLBPA rejected. It’s not clear how high the league is willing to set the thresholds, though, and Passan adds that the league’s willingness to raise them might come with associated stiffer penalties for exceeding them. Unsurprisingly, the MLBPA expressed concern that’d counterbalance high-spending teams’ willingness to surpass those thresholds.
Passan further reports that MLB has expressed openness to a “minimal” bump on the league minimum salary, which sat at $570.5K in 2021. MLB’s offer also included the introduction of the designated hitter to the National League, an on-field alteration widely expected to ultimately be put into place. Passan offers an in-depth breakdown of the labor dynamics that is well worth a full read for those interested in the topic.
The current CBA expires on Wednesday at 11:59 pm EST. It’s widely expected that the league will lock out the players if no deal is agreed upon at that point, a move that would come with an accompanying freeze on major league transactions. (Players who were not on a major league roster last season could still sign minor league contracts with clubs, Passan notes). Jon Heyman of the MLB Network tweeted this afternoon that while there’s been “incremental” progress between the two sides of late, there’s “basically no hope” of a deal getting done within the next 48 hours. That reality has been reflected in the flurry of free agent activity we’ve seen in recent days, as many players and teams have been highly motivated to lock in deals before the expected MLB transaction prohibition.
Dumb, if there’s 162 games in a season at least make them mean something
The bye might make the regular season mean more than it does now.
I don’t like playoff expansion in general but if the league is going to expand soon 14 teams might be alright.
I am anti-expansion. With 30 teams, it is already hard enough to envision your team winning the World Series.
I’d rather see some relocation than expansion but I think expansion is inevitable.
Yea, relocation seems better. No more baseball in Florida, Oakland has to relocate.
As a Bay Area guy, granted a Giants fan, I disagree that Oakland has to move. I have many friends who are avid As fans and what the As need more than anything is 1) a new ball park and 2) a new owner. NOT a new town.
Oakland is a modern day version of Fallout 3. Moving to Vegas is a no brainer.
As a semi Oakland fan how would you;
01. Draw people into a city that some areas are quite dangerous and scary even if just be reputation.
02. How you going find a new owner to put money into Oakland when the city fights them on everything and there are not a lot of things to do or safely feel to do in Oakland.
Living in California I have been to every stadium and I feel the least secure in getting and leaving in Oakland than I do anywhere else.
The future of baseball stadiums are putting them in right next to a mall with shopping places to eat etc. that is never going happen on Oakland.
The Athletics could go to Las Vegas have a city that wants partner up with casinos selling their tickets as part of a entertainment package; do something like Atlanta did and put shopping and food around them to make money all year.
A lot of major league players live during off season in Las Vegas that would attract them to live their full time. No players live full time in the city of Oakland.
Lastly; The Athletics would gain major money just by moving and avoiding the high taxes in California. Several players have turned down California teams or request more money do to the high taxes.
For the Athletics to survive they must leave California
My only question with Vegas is what will the tuesday-thursday attendance be like? Probably not too much more than a night in Oakland.
I’m sorry but you’re a moron, for a California native you’re uninformed. All metro cities have issues and unsafe areas. San Francisco has a well known homeless issue. St Louis, Detroit, and Baltimore are 3 of the 4 highest crime rates in the nation. Yes there are places in Oakland I’d avoid but that’s not the issue with attracting fans. The ballpark is totally antiquated and it doesn’t attract the non die hard fans to attend. Also there’s nothing in the surrounding area with restaurants, bars, entertainment. Also the owner is a cheap scumbag. They’re winning in spite of him. Vegas may be the answer if they want less hurdles to deal with and built faster. But if they ever built a ballpark on the bay which would be the equivalent of what giants have going, theyll attract fans. Also the issue is Oakland politicians moving at a snails pace
So your going take your family small children to a Oakland Athletics night game?? Your going stop and eat on the way out of Oakland or go shopping in Oakland?
You can do that in Las Vegas. I live Central Valley nobody wanted to go to a night game in Oakland with me even when I had box seats and free food as they were scared. Oakland is very rough
The weekday attendance would probably be better as Oakland the city has a horrible reputation. Las Vegas is a lot safer and people during summer vacation there every day
Asfrano870; nobody is going put a nice shopping center or Place to eat around Oakland as it won’t draw people
The A’s owner offered to pay off the City’s debt on the stadium, build a new one, and build residential abs retail spaces that would all generate perpetual property and sales tax revenue.
The City decided to bicker and accomplish nothing. As usual. That’s why Oakland is, well, Oakland.
So if the A’s can’t build a sports/retail/residential/park development on the one huge parcel of vacant land in the city, they’ll have to leave and do it elsewhere.
Oakland will lose 3 major sports teams in a span of 5 years yet the site won’t be developed 5 decades from now. They’ll still be bickering.
Do you have a link where players are quoted saying they turned down California teams for the reasons you stated?
It is generally agents, not players. CA taxes affect the take home portion of the deal and are considered in decision making. As they should be. Cost of living is too. We’re talking about 13.3% in state taxes, that’s a big cut.
I doubt it matters much to the top tier but it’s definitely a factor for the lower tier. $2 million here is a lot less than $2 million in Texas.
Any fiduciary has to account that.
The “snail’s pace” might have everything to do with the A’s asking for two separate special tax districts to fund almost a billion dollars in infrastructure improvements for the building project. These require more than the City of Oakland, but also Alameda County. It’s two governing bodies. Oakland and Alameda County agreed (non-binding term sheet) to the tax district for the actual stadium project site.
One sticking point is the 2nd tax district which they want to tax the area NOT in the baseball site, but the business and entertainment district adjacent to the new site (Jack London Square). AND the A’s want to earn interest on taxpayer money that would reimburse the team.
Also, the longshoreman’s union is concerned that the project will compromise the function of the Port, which employs over 80k people. The Mayor of Oakland says they will include language in any agreement to protect the Port, but that is yet another point of negotiation and potential cost.
The environmental impact report isn’t even completed.
It isn’t so simple to just blame the Cory of Oakland for dragging its feet. The A’s could speed all of this up if they were willing to privately fund the entire project, but they are not.
They dropped the second IFD months ago, and the City is getting a few $100M in federal funding already earmarked for Port-adjacent infrastructure improvements.
The IFD taxpayer money in question is the increase in property tax values caused by the development *and over only the development area* which means the sole taxpayER in question until some of the commercial and residential properties can be sold
(and they can’t start on that until the ballpark is complete)
is the A’s. The land of course will begin to increase in value the moment the project gets approved.
The EIR is due out by the end of the year, due to what seems to be City bureaucratic delays.
The ILWU cannot point to any more than 25 full-time jobs currently at Howard Terminal. The Port is comfortable functions can be moved elsewhere. The AFL-CIO unions and the Alameda County Labor Council are 100% for the ballpark project.
The Port of Oakland made separate unanimous decisions that a) the terminal cannot be viably upgraded to handle current container-shipping traffic, and that b) they really like the concept of being “ground-lease” landlords.
I’m going to disagree with you about Oakland. I did not feel very unsafe when leaving the ballpark. It was a great atmosphere. Tailgating in the parking lot with plenty of nice people and then hanging out with random people in the park during the game. I do think they need a new owner and ballpark, but I don’t feel they need to leave Oakland
Also, I feel like Vegas isn’t much better than Oakland. I have not yet been to a night game at the Coliseum so I can’t speak for the night games, but the day games I feel are very safe. I have seen worse things in Vegas than I have in Oakland
Oakland to San Jose makes the most sense. There are already A’s fans there. San Jose is a big city with lots of corporate money surrounding it. Screw the SF Giants for blocking the A’s ability to be competitive in the Bay Area. Giants are the definition of GREED. San Jose is starving for pro athletics and the Giants are 50 miles from there. It would be like the Dodgers controlling Orange County and locking out the Angels. Bay Area is big enough for two successful clubs. MLB, pull territorial rights to San Jose from the Giants!!!
Dump Tampa, Florida, Oakland and Baltimore. Montreal should definitely be one of the new locations.
Cleveland definitely needs to.
The A’s have been there since the 60’s. I get the Florida teams, they’re newer and don’t have the history…..but to me, any current team in its current local that been there since the 60’s or before should not be allowed to ever move. Figure it out and get a stadium built
We just need that platinum drip
I like Oakland, it has a bad rep like pit bulls, it had a bad history of being “dangerous” but has come around and doing much better. Las Vegas I got mugged walking back to my hotel, 3 minutes off the strip. Las Vegas is a desert, playing there must be hell in the Dog days of summer. Seriously though, Las Vegas is where you go to gamble drink and engage in illicit acts that are illegal most other places. I hope Montreal and Portland or Santa Fe or Brooklyn or North Carolina get the rays, and the A’s stay put.
Yup dump Tampa, Florida, Oakland and Baltimore. Kabul, Yemen, Pyongyang and Moscow should be the new locations.
You can probably get a hooker easier in Vegas but I agree. The owner has ruined that team for the past 17 years. In a market as broad as Oakland, they should have more payroll. And better accommodations for the team and most importantly fans. I remember the old Atlanta-Fulton county stadium and I can’t imagine that the coliseum is any better.
Ditto. Montreal needs a team. Thanks Lauria.
Spot on Fudd. Oakland always seems to put good teams on the field dispite limited dollars and the worst stadium in MLB.
They draft so very well and have a dedicated fansbase (even in Philly stillto this day) and are consistently competitive. They deserve better.
@benjamin Its only scary for people that don’t live in Oakland or that have not actually attended games there and those are not the people coming to games.
The majority of revenue comes from TV and streaming. Local TV contracts, national TV contracts, MLB.tv, and subscription services like MLB Extra Innings. Less than a third of any teams revenue comes from ticket sales. Casinos can buy 100% of the tickets to all 81 home games and ticket sales would not equal the TV money.
The Bay Area is the 6th largest TV market. The A’s would lose big time revenue by moving to the 40th largest TV market in Las Vegas.
While income tax BEFORE deductions is high in California, it is not in the top 10 in tax burden. You have to stop listening to questionable media sources and start doing research. I am in the 1% in terms of annual income and my tax burden annually is under 2%. I looked into moving my company and it would have cost me money to be in most other states because of the tax credits I get in California for capital investments in my company. Not to mention property tax protection here. I have owned my building since 1998 and my property tax is locked in until it is sold. My best friend moved to the Austin area in 2007 and he pays 10 times more in property tax than I do for a similar facility (cost and size) he owns there and its going up every year.
You obviously have not seen the plans for the new stadium in Oakland. Try looking at that before commenting on it.
For the Athletics to survive, they need a new stadium in the Bay Area.
Crime rates in Las Vegas are higher than Oakland. Both violent crimes and property crimes. And its not close. Roughly double the murders, quadruple the sexual assaults, and double the property crimes per capita.
Wrong. See my comment. Las Vegas is MUCH more dangerous place to be. Its not close.
And it’s more expensive to live in Oakland than Las Vegas.
I have taken my daughters to hundreds of night games at the Oakland Coliseum. Never any issues.
You’re, not your. Good luck with your journalism career.
No Dogpatch franchise?
Baseball is one of the few sports that you can argue that a first round bye is actually a negative.
Yeah, maybe, depending on how long the first round is. But you could set up your rotation and avoid an early exit in a short series. There’s no benefit, really, to finishing with the best record in the league right now.
i dunno, it can be useful in setting a pitching staff and getting banged up.players more rest.
Starting pitchers sitting for a week between starts and bats not being in game action could work against a first place team.
Can see it both ways, but not a slam dunk. Momentum and routine are important
A team with the best record uses the regular season to set up their rotation. Byes In baseball are a disadvantage. I would think some teams would lose not to get a Bye
All the bye would do is expose the major unfairness of the unbalanced schedules. This would be such garbage.
Why not a 30 team playoff?
The MLB might as well do that, knowing how they are.
How many more exapnsions do you invision? Relocation seems like the better answer currently with the lack of support some of these teams receive.
Having almost 50% of the league in the playoffs in nothing more than promoting the celbration of mediocrity.
Also, how fair is it to award a single division winner with a bye rather than all 3? At least the NFL gives a second team in each conference the same advantage.
2 more teams.
I am not a fan of expanded playoffs. The owners are because it means a half billion in additional revenue to have 14 teams in the playoffs.
FredMcGriff for the HOF
Manfred is a complete clown. Lockout is definitely coming.
Best Screenname Ever
Yeah, complete clown. Offered the players a performance-based pay system to replace arbitration, wants to replace lousy umps with robots like fans want, wants to expand playoffs like fans want…Complete clown. Hot take and original.
Who are the dumb f—— who want to expand the playoffs?
care to provide a more compelling argument than saying those who disagree are “idiots”?
A) The performance based pay system is really hard to see happening, and on this site was widespread doubt that it was ever meant to be taken seriously in the form suggested.
B) Fans want expanded playoffs? It seems like most comments here are negative. MLBTR readers and commenters might not be exactly representative, but I think that most fans can figure out that having almost half of the teams make the playoffs doesn’t work for baseball.
C) Robot Umpires: I say keep the human umpires. I have come around to support instant replay. But I think that the human element of the umpires is important. If robo umps happen, fans will lose the ability to boo the umpires, and to watch angry players and managers yell at the umpires.
No fans want to expand the playoffs!!! And nobody wants robot umps. It would be bad for the game.
Arbitration is literally a performance=based pay system… the better you play and the longer you play, the more money you make. No fans want the playoffs to expand. Get yo string-bean-lookin’, collard green-eatin’, palefaced self back to Pro Football Rumors
There’s all kinds of intelligent fans who want robot umps. There’s a lot of dumb ones who don’t want a better strikezone than mlb currently has for some dumb and bizarre reason.
It is so obvious that anybody who needs an explanation will never understand.
But the whole point of playing 162 games is to figure out who the best five teams in baseball per league, which is 1/3 of each league already, which itself is too many, and then we’ll be playing until Halloween.
That, dear children, is stupid.
It seems that instead of improving the game so people want to watch in July, we’re just gonna keep it stupid but make lots of teams eligible for the playoffs so people will watch in late October.
Angels,Rangers, Orioles, Pirates, D- Backs
Robots, time clocks and half the league in the playoffs. Sound familiar. Welcome to the nba where teams under 500 make the playoffs.
Don’t know of anyone who wants umps removed, they serve other purposes but I’m not against some sort of digital strike zone for consistency.
Expanded playoffs as long as they do away with this play in game, not actual playoff horses— they do now.
And you’re right, getting the call wrong 20% of the time is better…Clearly you have never had Angel Hernandez ump a game for your team.
Human umpires and relative human error are part of the game. Look how boring baseball has become without arguments with umpires and play stoppages for instant replay. Half the time I don’t agree with the replay decision anyway, so what good does it serve?
Is that the extent of your intellectual capacity?
While the digital strike zone is consistent within a park, it is not inherently accurate. Reliability versus validity problem in science. The measurements needed for the strike zone are dependent on instrument placement. As I understand it, with current instruments, accurate measurements cannot be taken at the proper angles due to obstructions such as the pitcher, catcher, umpire, etc. The strike zones you see on television, a two dimensional representation of a four dimensional space (don’t forget time) are not accurate, but they are consistent. You would get a slightly different strike zone in every ballpark but it would be consistently called unless there is an unanticipated obstruction to the instruments.
New avenue for cheating, hacking the software to call different strike zones for home team and visitors.
I imagine that MLB would employ top men to keep that from happening.
Wrong. The current system cannot be blocked by umpires or player placement. It is accurate to within 1/10 of 1 inch. It is both radar AND 18 cameras and cannot be blocked.
The biggest stumbling block to its implementation is that the players did not like that the original system was accurate in 3D so a pitch could be a ball at the front of the plate and just tick the back of the plate and be a strike to the system, so they changed it to a 2D system that only counts an area that is an area a the front of the plate that is the width of the plate and 2.86″ back from the front edge.
The other one was having the communication system to the umpire at home plate go down. So umpire are still prepared to make the call if they don’t have the signal come in and they can override any obvious miscalls.
The representations you see on TV utilize the same system that is will be used by MLB and is now installed in every MLB park and all but a handful of minor league parks. They have the same accuracy of 1/10th of 1 inch.
You will get exactly the same strike zone in every ballpark and in every game and it will all be 1/10th of 1 inch.
If the players agree to the ABS system in the new CBA, it will be implemented in the majors starting in 2022 or 2023.
If we only had 15 teams playing 14 opponents 12 times at home and 12 away, that would lead us to the best teams and 168 games on the schedule, so we wouldnt need more playoffs. It could be no divisions 1-15 leagues where 1 plays 4 and 2 plays 3 and winner plays the other league in the WS.
Balance the damn schedule, so sick of these fake playoff teams who waste time and wilt like flowers while teams built to win sit out because they didnt get hot enough in September.
Let’s play musical chairs, with 10 teams and 14 chairs hooray everyone wins!!!
Incentivizing teams to be mediocre is even worse than incentivizing teams to tank. This 10-team playoff is already too much when you have middling orgs like STL making it in.
Go back to one wild card, give the multitude of hopeful teams that are still competitive at the end of the summer a more exclusive and meaningful goal to work towards.
We’ve had 18 total WC games (not counting the absolute abomination of a playoff format from 2020.) Only two were genuinely interesting games that weren’t all but decided by the fifth inning, and the presumptive wild card team under the old format won both of those games. The sport can survive without all those “ImPoSsIbLe GaMe 7 MoMeNtS” that Manfred likes to chase
Hey which two did you consider genuinely interesting ?
This year’s NL and 2019’s NL
AL had a nice run from 2014-2016 as well, hard to say those games don’t classify as genuinely interesting
You don’t watch the AL wildcard do you. Been some very close, tense games over the years.
Red Sox fan not including the 16 AL Wildcard. Go figure.
St. Louis is a middling organization?! And exactly how many playoff appearances have the Angels had recently?
STL finished 2nd in the worst division in the league with a payroll $27M more than the next highest team in their division.
Only clowns see my name and think “Angels fan.” True scholars of the game see my name and think “David Fletcher.” (Red Sox fan btw)
Naw, just thought you were a Chevy Chase fan
Angel fan saying the cardinals are a middling organization. Lol dude seriously get some help
I’ll take the cost of living and the Cards here any day.
Are you by chance in a situation where you are unable to leave the state of Missouri? (Imprisonment, nursing home, commitment to a mental institution, etc.)
Are you living in your moms basement and she still does your laundry? What a tool. LOL
Tanking in baseball isn’t a viable strategy at all. They have more 1st rd misses and late rd hits than any other sport, not to mention an international signing system generating a tremendous influx of talent worldwide.
Increasing playoffs, CAN increase interest in the team locally as well as nationally, and CAN generate desperately needed market share among the other sports. More teams means more eyes, more eyes means more revenue, and more revenue means (in theory) a better product.
Yeah let’s get rid of the two best games of the year the wildcard games. More playoff teams is bad for players. They have the absolute perfect setup right now. The playoff format could use a tweak with the number one team deciding who they want to play.
Tell me what you enjoyed about the 2017 WC games. I’ll wait, clown.
It’s the anticipation of the big game feel and every single wildcard game has it clown. You wouldn’t know anything about the playoffs being a angel fan. So your too ignorant on the subject to have a opinion.
Are you old enough to remember the 2000s?
That’s a straw-man.
Agreed. This is worse than stupid…Would be an epic fail for baseball.
Gotta give the Mets a chance though.
Everybody gets a trophy! You get a trophy, and you get a trophy, and you get a trophy and you get a trophy etc. etc.
Expand to 32 teams, 4 division winners in each League, no wild card. Period. End this nonsense.
I can’t believe the number of commenters who don’t understand what’s going on here.
Big picture: the players want things that cost money. MLB doesn’t want to be worse off financially than before, and thus, is looking for things that either reduce costs or raise revenue. It then proposes those brainstorms to the MLBPA as options to add to the game where it can give some what the mlbpa wants while not ending up losing financially.
So what, some of the ideas are dumber than others. We don’t see the mlbpa suggesting anything new to fund their requests, do we? Just demand lists without proposals to raise new revenue to pay for them.
GASOX, MLB had a record revenue in 2021 of over $12 billion in 2021 and that is with the stands pretty empty because of COVID..That revenue will go absolutely up in 2022 and beyond. MLB already has plenty of revenue to pay for increases in player payroll. THAT is the biggest issue.
Players made $4.38 billion in 2021. About 35.6% of total revenue of $12.3 billion. Way too low. Players are looking for more equity in the revenue split.
Expanded playoffs, which will bring in nearly a half billion dollars to the owners, without more pay for the players, which the owners don’t want to give up, is not a possibility. The players union has already said no. Again, MLB already has plenty of revenue to increase player payrolls without effecting profitability
MLB and Manfred keep trying to negotiate in the press by releasing their proposals. That won’t work either because the negotiator for the union is one of the best around. You won’t see any of the proposals in the press that the MLBPA is offering because negotiations are supposed to be between the two parties, not the media.
Excellent point !
@Thesecondjamie – Spot on.
If they wanted to do the playoffs right, IMO, then all three division winners should recieve the bye. Make the wild card round between the two WC teams a best of 3 games with the higher ranking WC team getting games 2 and 3 at home as thie advantage with a day off before and after game 1 and a day off after game 3 before the NLDS starts.
This would give the division teams 5 days off for their “BYE” Enough time to rest, not too much time to get rusty.
Oh, doorknobs no. Expanding to 14-team playoffs? I would reluctantly accept 12, not 14. And this gimmicky “choose your opponent”? Lordy. An NL DH will kill most remaining embers of my enthusiasm
Hey, Mike Trout might make the playoffs after all!
That’s really the point of expanded playoffs… to get casual fans to watch good players in the playoffs. Nevermind that the team Trout plays on is undeserving of a playoff spot, but let’s give them a shot anyway in the postseason!
The NBA has 30 teams and 16 teams make the playoffs. The NFL has 32 teams and 14 teams make the playoffs. I don’t think the MLB proposal is that out of line. Brings more money and more viewers to the game. Long term would likely have a positive financial trickle down effect to salaries.
The NBA sucks, and 12 out of those 16 playoff teams have zero chance to win anything but a participation trophy
I agree with you on the chances of most NBA playoff teams having any sort of a realistic chance. I knew my team (the Mavs) had a low probability of advancing past the first round. Yet my wife and I went to a NBA playoff game & had an absolute blast. To me, it’s a fun atmosphere.
I also went to Rangers playoffs games back in the 90’s when they were playing a loaded Yankees team. My dad, brothers, and I had a blast at those even though we knew the Yankees were going to kick our tails (which they did).
I can’t get enough playoff atmosphere. Can see why some people think more teams is a joke, but the stadiums are always packed and electric. Brings the game more money to help fund higher salaries and also gives some fans a reason to stay engaged longer throughout the year.
My original point is NFL, the NBA, & hockey all have much more teams in the playoffs every year. MLB is a laggard when it comes to playoff opportunities. The current gap is pretty substantial compared to other professional sports.
No. It wouldn’t. The owners want all the money from expanded playoffs to go in their pockets. That is why the players union already said NO!
And in a CBA situation there is no trickle down. Its either agreed to or it doesn’t happen.
So…how about no.
I guess 2021 was my last season following baseball, thanks manfred!
I’m guessing you said that when they changed the intentional walk rule too.
Baseball will miss you. This message board will miss you. You’ve given so much, and asked so little. I’d say please don’t go, but you are a strong person who is passionate about his principles, clearly, so why fight it. Go, be free, and Godspeed.
Well considering staying the same has caused baseball’s numbers to plummet over the past 15 years, doing something different might replace you with more people. I think they can live with that.
You’re not going anywhere & you know it
The Saber-toothed Superfife
What a load….half.teams.in the playoffs, really?
Almost every other sport operates this way
What other sport has 162 games?
It’s amazing to mean these simpletons go to is but every other sport.
The season is too long. If they had a proposal where they shortened the season to 144 games or something, i could maybe entertain expanded playoffs. But thats an impossibility. So thumbs down to more playoffs.
And your point ?
The NHL should probably shift away from pucks to balls because almost every other sport operates this way.
This is totally not worth it
You can have a subpar team go to the World Series
Like the Braves.
The Braves beat three teams that won at least 95 games and they have won four straight division titles. They were only “subpar” because of the ridiculous number of injuries they had to deal with. They played .667 baseball for the final two months of the season.
@baseballpun I know you’re a butt-hurt Nats fan who hates the Braves, but sub par teams don’t win the World Series. They would’ve gotten stomped if that were the case. You look like a dolt every time you post.
I like the bye proposal. I don’t think the division winners get enough of a reward for winning out over 162, and this would help that a bit. LAD and or SF get a first round bye this year? (I’m no fan of either, so this isn’t homer talk..). I think they deserved it. The season they had, they should get a bye. This makes the lesser teams work harder to get to the finish line, thus slightly diminishing the “random hot team wins WS” probability.
The bye doesn’t really matter though, cause all it does it let them skip straight to the 2nd round…. which would just be the division series, which is right back where we started. The byes just mean the two best teams don’t have to play in the new, extra round they are adding into the whole setup, so they’re not really gaining all that much. If anything, the 3rd division winner is losing out the most here, cause they go from a guaranteed spot in the DS to having to play a 3-game wildcard spot. No playoff team really benefits from this setup.
It’s worth it in terms of $$$ though.
Cash is king
if a “bad” team beats a “good” team then was the “bad” team really worse than the “good” team? sometimes that can happen, but if you win the WS that’s a lot of times to get lucky.
Let’s be honest, Manfred just wants the Yankees to sweep the Twins every single year.
happened in the division era (73 mets, 87 twins, for example).
happened in the wild card era too (06 cards, for one).
Ok thoughts on this one? I think it’s more balanced for both sides. Maybe make it a 12 team playoff bracket (idk how though) and work along those lines, add the DH raise the lux tax and raise the minimum player salary slightly? That’s my two cents
Two teams from each league would get byes. There’s your 12 teams
Yeah, 6 teams, bye for best two division winners. Division winner with worst record and three wild cards seeded 1 to 4, three game series. Two winners play on road against two bye teams five game series. NLCS stays seven games. That is forty percent of teams in playoffs, more detracts from post-season.
Stupid, stop ruining the game.
take it as long as upper threshold is $240 million or higher and lower one higher than $90 mil.
another step in manfred’s quest to turn baseball into hockey
I don’t like the Idea for MLB, but the NHL playoffs are the best show in pro sports.
They are a blast to watch. For reference, 16 teams make the NHL playoffs. 32 teams total.
Baseball has the lowest percentage of major league sports teams make the playoffs. I love the atmosphere of playoff baseball.
So corny and unnecessary, balance the schedule is 168 games, then just have 1 play 4 and 2 play 3.
We literally just saw how these playoffs became last man standing type events, worst quality of playoffs in a long time. Absolute greed and scumbaggery by Manfred and nothing else.
I like inter league games. Could have 15 teams play eleven games against all 14 other teams, or 154 games. Then have four games against each of two teams in other league. So 162 total. Two divisions would work well if they ever have 16 teams in each league, but probably not in the next few years.
Players don’t want a balanced schedule because it makes the travel even worse. The unbalanced schedule is more a quality of life concession to players than anything.
Not a fan.
Expanded playoffs into November is factoring in projected global climate warming I suppose. But the 1 game winner- advance WC game needs to go and the 162 game season needs to mean something.
i mean cmon now, this isnt about physical climate. its fiscal climate. M. O. N. E. Y. money.
I don’t see it helping anything. People will start saying “Its just the playoffs” Why would they want to devalue baseball. STUPID!!!
It would be better if they got rid of the wild card.
You need one wild card if you keep three divisions. You could have three division winners and the non-division winner with the best second half record to keep it interesting.
Ask for 14 and maybe agree on 12 which sounds like a good compromise. The 2 division winners with best records get a bye, the other division winner plays the WC team with the worst record and the other 2 WC teams play each other? Just thinking aloud…
Agree but no one game series, three should be minimum so you cannot have edge having one good starter plus trash.
That completely waters down the product but picking an opponent is kind of fun.
Even picking an opponent would be kinda lame. Teams are just going to say we picked them cause we think they are best and we want to beat the best.
Eff this. The league deserves a lockout if this is the kind of drivel they’re proposing. Midwits will say “but don’t you want to watch more baseball???” We shouldn’t reward ‘just ok’ teams with a playoff berth. Go back to one wild card.
Knowing how stupid Tony Clark is, he’ll take this deal in a heartbeat and call himself the hero that saved the season.
Until he leaves some gaping loophole in a different area that owners exploit; and then he will complain about it for the duration of the contract because he wasn’t paying attention.
Clark: “Wait, what do you mean there was a clause that allows for teams to pay players in scratch-off tickets?”
Players: “Paragraph 1, Line 1, sir.”
Manfred thinks he’s running the NBA. What’s the point of playing 162 if you’re going to let about half of them into the playoffs? I will never watch baseball again if some stupid sub-.500 team who has no business of even getting a whiff of the playoffs ends up winning it all because Manfred wants the playoffs to be, “Anything can happen”.
This idiot may be a great businessman, but baseball isnt just a business and he’s destroying it little by little with his dumbassery.
It’s just a business, though. The owners will lockout or the players will strike, and neither will care one bit about your passion for the actual sport… because it’s a business.
Every other major professional sports has roughly half the teams making the playoffs…
@CursedRangers – You said “Every other major professional sports has roughly half the teams making the playoffs:”;
Maybe this will put it into perspective.
Number of games in a regular season:
MLS 34 (placed here solely for comic effect)
The repeated argument that “Every other professional sports team has roughly half the teams make the playoffs so MLB should do the same” is bad “logic” because those other leagues have MUCH less games in which they may display their competitive competence, or lack thereof. If MLB is going to expand the playoffs, they should correspondingly reduce the number of regular season games because the expansion of the playoffs theoretically greatly reduces the importance of the regular season. And I, as a long-time baseball fan, do not like a scenario where there is less baseball. I recognize using that logic means I should embrace a post-season which includes more teams. Again, the expansion of the playoffs greatly reduces the need for and a competitive value of a 162-game season.
MLB should understand that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” and leave the playoffs alone. Their tinkering is ruining what made MLB so great.
MLB is broke though. It’s losing fans and doing little to attract new fans. I get that baseball was/is a brilliant game that took off in the 1800’s. If all of society used your short sighted, can’t think outside of the box, approach of ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ we’d all still be riding horses. I know it’s hard for stubborn people to accept change, but change is good. But I do appreciate you letting me know how many games baseball plays every year. That was a really valuable insight.
@CursedRangers – There’s a big difference between the development of technology and the rules of a game. You extrapolated my approach to the management of the postseason into a silly and exaggerated direction it was never intended.
You might also be well served to know sarcasm is a weapon of the weak, and apparently the insecure as well.
This proposal is to the benefit of owners, not players. It’s additional TV revenue for clubs. Meanwhile, the “slight” increase in the luxury tax will amount to a cut based on inflation, meaning the two items taken together will further increase the clubs’ share of revenue while decreasing the players.
In other words, they’re not making any progress.
It benefits both the players and the owners. Look at how the owners are spending money. They make money, and then pay bigger salaries to the players so they can make even more money. This is the strongest MLB has ever been, yet fans want to say Manfred is ruining the sport. That makes no sense.
It makes perfect sense if the argument can be made based on facts.
The same way a really good commissioner wouldn’t be able to make the CFL bigger than the NFL is the way a bad commissioner wouldn’t be able to ruin the MLB, doesn’t mean he’s doing a good job or that fans can’t criticize him.
The league itself has its own trajectory and momentum that no one single man, not even the commissioner can impact.
Are you suggesting David Stern didn’t impact the NBA? He took the sports overseas, which MLB will need to do to stay afloat. Interest in spectator sports is way down among young Americans. Generally speaking, most Americans don’t follow sports at all. That means MLB and the other sports will have to come up with creative ways to expand their audience. The NBA created a blueprint that MLB will soon follow. David Stern’s influence. A sports league commissioner.
As for facts, the financial aspect of MLB is on the rise. The sport is not being ruined by anyone.
Not suggesting that at all, merely suggesting that the sport, the players, society, economy etc are all bigger factors than the commissioner.
Michael Jordan did more for the game than David Stern could ever dream of. My point is simply that because baseball is financially healthy right now that is not a direct correlation to job performance from Manfred. The game has never had younger, more exciting super stars playing within the same generation.
I tend to give more credit to Ohtani and Verlanders of the league for growing the game vs any suit. Manfred is the guy at the Ferrari dealership picking out colours and options, there’s only so much he can improve and only so much he can ruin it, regardless it’s still going to be a Ferrari
Fair enough. But since the game is on an upward trajectory, it’s foolish for anyone to suggest Manfred is ruining it. Who is he ruining it for, a bunch of cranky old fans who want to live in the past? News flash to those fans: The game of baseball will be around long after you’re gone. You are not irreplaceable.
Yeah what a sin it is to make money if you are a business owner. Shame on you owners!
I don’t mind 14 teams. If anything I think it makes teams on the bubble want to push vs give up. If you know your team can’t make it then it’s easier to sell and align for next year.
Plus, more fans engaged in baseball in September is a good thing, no? I don’t care is a mediocre team makes the playoffs, I want to be invested in my team after labor day. More butts in seats equals more money for everyone.
Expanding the playoff field will be great for the game’s growth. More teams having a chance at the post-season will lead to fewer lengthy rebuilds that screw fans. It will also mean fewer empty seats in the second half of the season when teams are hopelessly out of contention. These days, competition for our entertainment dollar is greater than ever. In order for the game to continue growing, both sides need to be receptive to change. Otherwise, baseball will fall behind due to inaction.
If they go down this route they have to reduce the number of games, so the regular season becomes less important.
That being said I hate the sound of that and don’t like the idea of expanded playoffs
A compromise could be a more dynamic schedule, have a balanced schedule majority of the year then maybe the last month of the season schedule teams to play eachother with playoff implications on the line. This way you still get 162 games but teams that don’t make the playoffs play a couple exciting, playoff type games down the stretch.
Teams with the bottom 10 records with 30 games to go play for the #1 pick etc. best record from that bunch gets #1, second best #2 and so on. Like a draft playoff. Make those teams games mean something and eliminate tanking!
Great idea. That fits in nicely
14 would be a disaster. Why not aim to win 85 every year and hope you get hot like the Braves. This isn’t the NBA – playoffs are a crapshoot.
I think 12 would be fine – would much rather stick w/ 10 — where the first round is best of 3 and divison series move to best of 7. That’s a lot more playoff games and keeps the regular season meaning something.
because if you aim for 85 and dont get hot it doesn’t matter, or you aim for 85 and then end up below that because of injuries. people say the current setup is too much yet there is meaningful baseball played every September for almost every playoff spot.
No. It works fine now. Heck it worked fine with four teams. Two were too few.
A third of the teams is more than enough. Almost half? Give me a break!!!
I don’t like 14 but just to spitball. Why not make the 4-7 teams basically an nba style play-in?
7-6 (one game)
7/6-5 (one game)
7/6/5 – (have to beat #4 team 2x)
The upside is yes, more teams technically make it but it would be 4 wins in 4 days for a 7 seed and 3 wins in 3 for the 6, etc. Nobody is going to want to be these teams and their odds of advancing are very low. Big incentive to at least be #4 as well.
i would imagine logistics are a consideration, and, again, the almighty dollar.
This is stupid. Why do they even consider such incredibly stupid ideas. You play 162 games, and then almost half of major league baseball players another bunch of games?
That is stupid, children. Stupid.
Further expanding playoffs is absolute trash and yet another ploy by the owners to avoid paying high salaries to superstars. Next thing you know every team will be in the playoffs, NHL style.
Avoid paying high salaries to superstars? Have you been paying attention these past few days? Owners are investing a boatload of money in players, so of whom aren’t even all-stars. The more money the owners make, the more money players will be paid in the future.
The best way to get the players their $ is to give everybody on the 40 man roster a 10% pay increase if they make the playoffs.
The way they’re doing it is working better. Why should a player’s earning power be hindered by the performance of his teammates? No good player would ever want to sign with a bad team.
Just another money making scheme from owners and players of MLB.
Agree. And who would do the choosing when playing the wild card teams? The owners? The managers? If the owners do it, possible collusion and corruption opportunities. Let the numbers decide, not greedy owners.
This is full indication that we’re getting a lockout. The way the playoff picture is perfect. Don’t fix it if it ain’t broke. Just get rid of the man on 2nd in extra and 7 inning double headers. Personally I’d love to the nl to never get a DH. It was only a matter of time before that happened though unfortunately
If they want a 14 team playoff structure, give all 3 division winners byes. The 4 wild card teams can play the standard, 1 game, winner take all series. There would just be 2 of them.
If the goal is to have more playoff games on tv, make the Division Series a 7 game series instead of a 5 game series. I’m not a fan of a 3 game series for Round 1 at all. How would the travel work? It would probably have to be played all in the same park, so the team with the worst record wouldn’t see any home park revenue. They can’t make it a 1-1-1 series, as that would stretch it to a 5 day series due to travel. Bad idea.
I would like if they just left the playoff teams as is, and made the wildcard game a best of 3. Like you said play all 3 games in the home ballpark. No travel.
Team with better record gets the first two games at home as reward for having the better record. Team with worse record has to earn their home game by winning on the road but gets the deciding game of the series at home. Or flip it. Doesn’t have to be alternating home games for a series.
The Dodgers won 106 of 162 games and their entire season came down to a 1 game WC game. I hate that. No more 1 game series.
That’s never happened before. And they can change that by eliminating divisions and just having the 4 top teams make it, which is what they should do.
A three-game series at the ballpark of the team with the better record would be incredibly exciting. TV audiences would be glued to the screen and new rivalries would emerge. It would be like the first few days of the NCAA Basketball Tournament. Wall-to-wall baseball but better because teams wouldn’t be eliminated after one loss. Fans would plan their vacation days around something like that. The whole thing would last four days and make the sport a ton of money while generating enormous interest in the game. Why would a baseball fan not want that?
Or make it like NCAA. Four wild cards go to city with best wild card record. First day wild card one plays wc4, one game. WV2 plays WV3 one game. Winners play each other and then you’ve have five game division series with three division winners and the one wild card team.
The owners are back baby!
I like it. more teams playing meaningful games later into the year is generally better for business. if they don’t belong they lose early. if they don’t lose early than did they really not belong? yes, the regular season does matter if you want to have a favorable road to the WS and homefield advantage. teams want that, plain and simple. dont like it, dont watch the low seed play. id rather have the choice, personally.
In a small sample size any team can beat a good team. The long season removes any small sample size out, which minus a few exceptions, ensures bad teams are not playing in the playoffs
Yuck. No thanks.
Seems like we all hate it. Wonder if the players will hate it ?
The players will hate it unless it allows them to make more money…then they’ll love it!
Then the NFL and MLB would both play on Thanksgiving.
Or, MLB can mirror the NFL’s schedule and play 17 games a year! Yay stupidity!
Or, the owners, who I usually side with, can stop using this as a force tactic they know won’t be approved to leverage a lockout.
Just leave the game ALONE
Why? There is untapped money out there for the sport to make. Why shouldn’t they go after it?
Traditional baseball fans are weird. The sport is finding ways to thrive like never before and they want to put a stop to it. Weird.
Additionally, the owners aren’t putting the money back into the sport at near the same rate at which they’re making it, and that’s just clean profit, not including interest on that money which is a multiplier.
Bottom line: this has a ripple effect on all future MLB players and fans. But what will happen is that fans will lose even more interest as MLB attempts to mirror other sports, and they won’t be drawing interest because youth will still be drawn more to ….you guessed it – other sports.
Are the owners Manfred works for paying their players more money than ever before? Yes or no.
In a lockout do players get paid?
So this is why the Mets and Rangers spent so much.
“Middling orgs.” The Cards finished with a better record than the Braves. smh
They also went 1-6 against ATL this year. Georgia gang rise up!
I like the 14 team playoff structure. It should help incentivize winning. So many more teams will be with a shot. Having said that, I wouldn’t want to expand the playoffs at the expense of the length of the regular season which is where this may be headed.
Kind of defeats the purpose of a 162 game season. Plus aside from from the team getting the bye the other 6 teams there very little difference other than an additional home game between winning the division and the wild card. There should be more incentive to winning the division which is one of the reasons why the wildcard game was added. Manfred always trying to change the game and make something it is not.
Hate this idea.
How does allowing a team to choose it’s opponent in the playoffs do anything positive for either competitive or labor relation purposes? Let’s be honest, the concept had to be based around the idea of letting high payroll, large market teams that typically end up with better regular season records because they can afford depth pieces equivalent to small market teams’ regulars the option to avoid playing a team like the Rays have been the past two years. Thereby enhancing the chances that large market teams make deeper playoff run to guarantee a higher floor of prospective TV viewers for the playoffs to make the league and owners more money off of TV deals. Expanding the playoff field is also a means to have more leverage in negotiating TV contracts for the leagues playoff games as well. I don’t think that maximizing potential profits during the playoffs is a bad thing in and of itself but expanding the pool of teams waters down the competition a bit and allowing teams to pick opponents makes a mockery of competition.
A lottery for the draft and a three game wild card series are both pretty good ideas though so I feel like this is a step in the right direction and gives me more hope that the season will start as scheduled in the spring after the seemingly inevitable lockout.
Mets might finally make the playoffs.
Expand from 30 to 32 teams and then have four 8-team leagues. That would allow a change back to a 154-game regular season. From there, they should be able to figure out post-season play to make up for the lost games and still make things shorter than than it currently is.
We are heading toward expansion, although MLB doesn’t seem ready for it. They likely first want to get a new CBA in place. Existing teams also don’t want to share TV revenue with the new teams and also don’t want to expand until the situations in Tampa and Oakland are fixed. Can’t expand to new cities if those two teams go there. That’s why I think MLB will first increase the postseason to 12 teams, and then they’ll increase it to 14 teams when they expand to two new teams. I don’t like it, but it’s coming.
I do hope they go away from the unbalanced schedule. As a fan of an AL East team, I’m tired of playing the same teams 19 times each.
FredMcGriff for the HOF
@rob. Just what baseball needs more teams to dilute the MLB talent. Almost every club has a few to half a dozen or more players who should be in AAA instead of active roster spot on a MLB team. What MLB needs is contraction of a couple teams to increase the competitiveness.
Diluting the playoff field doesn’t make teams more competitive. Just look at the NBA.
The NBA has experienced enormous growth in recent years. The proof is in the money players now make. Next up for MLB will be more games played in foreign cities a la the London Series. There’s a lot of money to be made in introducing MLB to a global audience that will include global TV money. In a few years, Americans will go on European vacations and see the locals wearing Soto and Tatis jerseys. That will be great for the game, just as it’s been great for the NBA.
Yeah, culture of mediocrity. Baseball is trying its hardest not to be the best sport despite efforts to keep it that way.
Then how do you explain the game making money like never before in its history? The old days were not better…in anything.
@CeyHey- “Then how do you explain the game making money like never before in its history? The old days were not better…in anything.”.
Really? Money is not the only indicator of how good a business is operated. Values are important too. 40 years ago teams didn’t have an annual special day at their ballpark to pridefully and publicly celebrate the most popular perversion of the day. In that regard the “old days” are way better than the current “we’ll openly and proudly support any deranged behavior in exchange for the greedy “more money” attitude. Some things are worth much more than the money you seem to value so much.
Making more money because there are more people, prices are higher and they have enormous television contracts. It’s not apples to apples, and I’m not arguing the old days were better, but there’s no good reason to water the sport down.
The argument referencing other sports is fallible because they aren’t better by any measure. If your only measure is money, than that’s a poor perspective.
More playoff teams will generate interest in more markets. That’s not a bad thing. Like any other professional sport, Major League Baseball is a business. That makes money the proper perspective. What would be a better way to measure it?
This will only lead to more innings limits, rest days, and abbreviated starting pitching outings.
Literally no point in wasting your guys in April and May when almost half the league makes the postseason.
Or in September if you’re not competing for best record and have a playoff spot locked up.
Remove interleague play except for the obvoius exceptions aka Mets vs Yankees or Whitesox vs Cubs. Decrease games to 150 and increase the number of playoff teams to 12. 3 division winners in each league get a 5 day bi. Top 3 next best records are wild card teams with the two lowest records do bo1, then winner plays the highest in a bo3
Or just don’t change it at all.
Yes no change at all I agree. Expanding makes the 162 worthless. If they want to expand, maybe just turn the wildcard game into a best of 3 playing three days straight. But leave the playoff teams at 10.
Such an objectively horrible idea.
Oh yeah pick your opponent. How cool. While we’re at it, How about the 2 wild card teams hold a draft and take the 25 best players between them and make a super wild card team to compete.
Id watch that. The ultimate small market revenge series.
Like the first round of the NCAA hoops tournament.
MLB Playoffs are all about who gets hot at the right time. Expanding the playoff picture only makes the regular season worthless. All teams would need to do is hover at .500 and hope. Why spend an extra $50-$75Million to improve a few wins if you can back into the post season and ride the tornado?
You made the exact point why the players (heavily influenced by Boras) oppose the proposal. People need to just relax and let it play out
Exactly. And I think this also means less trades at the deadline since more teams would be hovering around that 500. I hate the expanded playoffs idea, as you said really makes the 162 worthless.
Here’s my proposal…
– 12 teams in the postseason
– Go back to two divisions per league
– Give the two division winners in each league a first round bye and have four wild cards per league
– Have the four wild cards in each league play a best-of-three wild card round with the winners advancing to play the division winners in the Division Series
You need an even number of teams in each division for it to be fair, it works with 32 teams but that is a decade or more away.
It’s really not that unfair with that many wild cards. One division would have seven and the other would have eight but the next four best records in each league would all get in.
I’m not sure what MLB wants in total out of these negotiations. I’m sure the status quo is at the top of the list as MLB’s share of the revenue pie has increased and players’ decreased while revenues have exploded, but there are two other items they seem to be shooting for here: Expanded playoffs for the additional gate and TV revenue and the establishment of an international draft. Both are about money through increased revenue and controlling costs. On the latter, MLBPA has shown time and time again they will sell away the rights of their future members, so I can see them giving that one up. Hopefully they hold out for something worthwhile, something they haven’t done in the past. The expanded postseason is a big one, so they should be able to get a few choice concessions if they hold their ground.
For the most part, the MLBPA is not going to change everything in one agreement. They need to do what the owners did, which is to slowly chip away and redirect things over the course of a few CBAs. Get the ship pointed in a new direction.
It does seem the owners came forward with some legitimate ideas this time. Increasing the luxury tax threshold and having a lottery on the first three draft picks. Directionally it”s good, but it’s pretty weak too. Not unexpected. Start low and negotiate from there. For whatever reason, the players have never tried to index the luxury tax thresholds to growth in player salaries. Great for the owners; bad for the players. A lottery for the top three picks is too little. Have a lottery for the top ten picks. The players need to get to free agency sooner and increase the minimum significantly. I don’t believe they’ll accomplish all of this, but they need to begin to change the framework. Let’s see where this goes next.
At the minimum, at least the owners have come forward with something the MLBPA can begin to react to and provide counterproposals.
Great post RobM
Kelly Wunsch & Co.
162 should mean something. I’d honestly prefer it if they just had division winners in the playoffs (maybe 1 wild card team). Then play a round robin format to see who wins the pennant in their respective leagues. Everyone has to play everyone. 1 game at home, one game away. Every playoff team is guaranteed the same amount of home games as everyone else (minus the World Series). World Series would be a traditional best of 7 series.
I hate all of this. It’s all garbage. It all stinks. They need to just leave the game alone because with Robbie in charge they can only mess it up.
A week off in the NFL is a godsend for teams and players to regroup and get healthy. A week off in Baseball means the odds of the teams with the best records in each league going home after one round increase exponentially.
Baseball is not the NBA/NHL. It doesn’t need half of the teams in each league to make the playoffs. The Baseball season is already six months long, add another month and a half for playoffs and by the time the World Series ends it’ll be time for spring training.
Manfred does not like baseball, he wants to turn it into one of the other sports. always trying to reinvent the game. They want to speed things up then add a pitch clock.
Nope. Playoffs are already watered down with the extra wild cards.
No word on all DH yet?
I read they had made progress on non-critical issues, including the DH. The word progress indicates a change, meaning the Universal DH will happen.
I think the universal DH will ( and should) happen
But that could simply mean they agree one way or another and check it off and no longer need to talk about it.
But you are likely right
Here is an idea that I have never seen. Food for thought.
1- Go back to 2 divisions per league.
2- Division winners get a bye
3- 4x wild cards play in a pool, 1 game against each other. Tie decided by run differential.
4-Remainder of playoffs per normal.
1- Removes some of the schedule imbalance and a good team in a bad division getting in over an even better team missing the post season.
2- Incentive to win the division
3-The pool play would get a ton of eyeballs. Pool play in the 2 best wild card cities. More regular season incentive.
Intelligent discourse welcome.
With the field of dreams pop up baseball event as successful as it was, they should have a traveling team where they play in 26 cities across the US. Would a team like the Pirates get more than 10,000 people coming to a game if they were to play in Charlotte or Fargo?
Expanded playoffs are happening. League expansion is happening. Period.
It’s all about money. And there is plenty to go around.
But the NFL and NBA have overtaken MLB over the past couple of decades. Changes must happen before MLB all but disappears like pro boxing or horse racing ( as far as national popularity)
1) add playoffs but shorten the season so MLB is only going head to head with NBA and NFL during playoffs.
2) expand so number of additional playoff teams are somewhat offset by more teams.
3) completely change leagues and divisions by geography to encourage more local/regional rivalries and reduce travel. Same rules for all teams.
4) balance the schedule.
5) make the first level of “wildcard games” an NCAA tournament style round Robin played as an event at a neutral site. (spread the wealth and experience to new/different fans)
6) include playoff stats as “official stats” to limit the impact of reduced games to the historical record books.
7) make umpires full time employees and accountable for performance. Use technology for balls/strikes but leave all other calls alone.
8) have one single process for gaining amateur talent. No more U.S. draft vs international signings vs foreign league postings.
9) have salary floor and whatever ceiling device that can be agreed upon as a counter.
10) incentivize players to stay with teams rather than leave when free agency is earned.
Well, that’s a lot to process. Hopefully myself and others can expound on these ideas. Not that anything will come of it.
2 team expansion to Charlotte and Las Vegas.
Relocate Tampa Bay to Montreal and Oakland to San Jose or maybe Riverside area.
Las Vegas team
Each team plays every other team 5 times – 155 game season.
Interesting. I like the idea. I had one very similar:
If the DH indeed goes away, MLB might as well do away with the AL/NL format and split the leagues up using the Mississippi River as the general dividing liine to create a Wetern and Eastern Conference.
That way you can keep existing rivalries like Red Sox/Yankees, Cubs/Cards, etc.
Make North and South disvisions for each conference. Each Conference plays within itself. Rather than an interleague play, each disvision plays a couonterpart disivion in the opposing conference and it is alternated every year, similar to what the NFL is doing.
4 divsion winners, 2 WC teams for each conference. WC Teams have best of 3, then Conference Championship and WS are best of 7.
Single season records matter in baseball. If Soto hits 398 in 150 games would he have reached 400 in 162? Or careers…if Tatis hits 705 HRs playing 12 less games a year how does he compare to others? I don’t think it’s petty to care as much or more for the consistency of the game than it is for its optimal financial marketing. Obviously from the FA signings we’re seeing, the owners and players are going just fine.
You’re presenting a logical argument to illogical non-baseball fans.
I think 12 would be perfect- still puts emphasis on the regular season, top 2 teams get byes, just like the old NFL format
Should be at least 14 teams in playoffs. It gives fans more to cheer about in September and still less than half the teams. This idea that the playoffs are somehow sacred is so old fashioned, kind of like thinking the shift is evil and watching pitchers bat is fun and strategic.
Then why play a gruelling schedule just to have crappy WC teams “earn” a postseason spot. Pathetic.
I completely agree. Out of curiosity I glanced at 2021 standings. Under 14 team playoff format Seattle and Toronto get in AL, Cincy and Philly NL. The worst record is from the Phillies at 82-80.
What’s the point of 162 then Manfred? Get back to the drawing board, because I’m ok with a lockout if you’re bringing this type of deal forward
On one hand I do like the idea of it being more likely for my team to make the playoffs, and I’m sure that matchup-picking event would be a lot of fun. But man, months and months of games just to eliminate 16 teams feels wrong.
I don’t see how having a bye is an advantage for teams that play a precision sport? The 1996 Yankees come to mind as a team that won the ALCS very quickly, and had a week to sit around, and wait. Ultimately they won the World Series, but they looked terrible in the first two games, and not every team is going to be able to recover like that. It will make for boring, uncompetitive baseball in the long run.
That would be a good idea, the players just have to ask for a floor, 100M,120M?
Can everyone agree that Manfred needs to go, resolve that piece and then start negotiating. This guy is a cancer in the game.
I think the only thing that people can agree on, both baseball and non-baseball fans, is that baseball needs major changes in order to survive.
I would HATE to see changes made to the on-field product (like robo umps), but there are major opportunities for procedural and structural changes. Some things I personally would love to see:
1- the draft completely restructured with global eligibility and reduced rounds (I.e. NBA structure).
NBA 2 rounds and 5 starters on court
NHL 7 rounds and 6 players on ice
NFL 7 rounds and 11 players on field
MLB 40 rounds and 9 players on field
This brings me to
2- reduce affiliate teams in MiLB
MLB teams often have 5 affiliate clubs (DSL, A, A+, AA, AAA) while every other major sport has max 2 (NHL – ECHL and AHL). It is a known fact that MiLB players are treated poorly and one way to improve conditions is to unfortunately remove some affiliates and consolidate budget. Having 2 teams I think would be best. On the surface, this may not look the best for the MLB to remove affiliates, but players will still have the opportunity to be scouted and signed in other leagues that would inherently become more talented. Reducing affiliates will improve conditions for the remaining affiliates and increase the level of competition/importance of internal player development.
3- Make draft picks eligible to be traded
The MLB is the only major sport where you cannot trade draft picks. How many future 1st rounders do you think someone would pay to acquire Betts or Scherzer at the deadline? Then fans can follow the college level more closely to see which players they think their team should take.
4- This going to be unpopular but reduce the schedule to 120 games
Losing out on revenue for 42 games will sting, but this will make each game more meaningful and increase urgency/competition within those games. Plus, I’m sure the players won’t complain about receiving more off days where they have only about 4 each month, which are mainly used for rest/travel. They will have more time in-season for family, recovery (mentally and physically), and autonomy. This would reduce the need for a 5 man rotation and would create more marquis matchups between aces. No more games of the Red Sox fifth starter vs Orioles 5th starter. The issue with this would be that some players will lose their job and the price for high end talent will continue to increase where I already think players are overpaid (again, another unpopular opinion). I do think it’s awesome for players to get their 10 year, $325million contracts (congrats Seager), but there are maybe 10 players in the entire league that have even a $200million contract and this – believe it or not – leaves teams strapped for cash to sign additional talent and if that one player gets hurt they’re retaining 0 value and have no depth to sustain success. Sorry Yankees fans, but this is why you haven’t won much this millennium. The best team I can think off that pays fair value for FAs and prioritizes internal development and has sustained success: anybody, anybody, Buehler, anybody?
Which leads me to 5:
5- I personally think the MLB should adopt a hard salary cap but the players would never go for it so instead they should increase the ramifications for exceeding the luxury tax threshold… which would essentially be the same thing as creating a hard cap without actually creating one
Back to my previous example of the Seager signing… Seager is making over $30mil/season. The Dodgers had a salary level of ~$200mil last season. The $30mil level represents 15% of the highest paid team’s salary allocated to one player on a 25 man MLB roster. If everyone were paid evenly, a player should receive 4% on the 25-man roster but this doesn’t even include teams that have deferred payments (Bobby Bonilla day), retained salary (Sox paying the Dodgers $16mil next year for David Price), or minor league salary, so these numbers are even more skewed to the extreme than what I show. It’s no secret that deals over $200mil generally turn out bad. In fact, to me only the Joey Votto contract looks to have worked out while the remaining $200mil contracts have mostly been signed in the past 5 years and are still too soon to judge but I assume teams would love to take back major contracts to Pujols, Stanton, David Price, Greinke, and more just to cherry pick a few (not very good that we can all think of more bad contracts than good contracts at this price level).
The point I’m making is that having this level of budget allocated to a single player is EXTREMELY risky. If that player gets hurt, the team retains 0 value for each game that player doesn’t play and is left with the players making ~2% of their budget which are mostly pre-arb players and low-tier/minor league signings. Removing these contracts by increasing the consequences for signing them would be better for the game overall by promoting a more balanced pay structure for all teams and would allow teams to become more flexible with making improvements to their team.
I’ve got more but I also have a day job to get back to but let me know what y’all think.
Well, for starters, MLB does NOT need “major changes in order to survive”, just a few minor ones to reflect the basics of the game itself: eliminate the DH, go back to 154 game season, 2 or 4 divisions in each league with NO “wild card”, scrap interleague play and FIRE Manfred.
Beavis was the Smart One
It seems like they could give the league what they want by expanding the playoffs, and the players get what they want by restructuring contracts so young players get paid what they are worth.
I’m not going to pretend like I know how these things work, so I guess this is more of a pipedream
14 teams make it? Good bye major rivalries. Good bye division titles meaning much. Devalue the long grind of the regular season. The most exciting games down the stretch will be exclusively between mediocre teams. Terrible.
Picking your opponent is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This is ridiculous; half the league making the playoffs? I don’t think that this will help prevent tanking (see NBA/NHL) or encourage owners to spend on free agents. I don’t see how this is of any help except to line the league’s/owners pockets with revenue and give fans worse playoffs that will be even LONGER than they already are.
Like I always said, just put all the teams in one division and whoever wins the division is the champion
Fourteen teams playoff. Ah, the relentless drive in contemporary America to reward mediocracy. Why strive to be the best in your league, when being just above average gets you a shot at the WS? Heck, with inter-league play, you might not even have to be an above 500 ball team. Is this a great country or what? Wait, do we have to change that phrase to “is this a mediocre country or what?”
Can’t wait for the counter proposal from the players association asking for participation trophies.
You really are an idiot. You are making the regular season meaningless. Wild Card MUST be 1 GAME. And, ban astro-turf and the DH. At this point, I only have HOCKEY left, which as already proven time and again the regular season is meaningless… There is HOPE the new mutation will take out EVERYONE under 50 and the world, and MLB, will be saved. AMERICA VOTE WITH YOUR FEET, STOP GOING TO REGULAR SEASON GAMES, they will listen …
They could propose a 29 team playoff and the Pirates would still miss them.
Why bother with a season? Just have all the teams in a mud-slinging three month playoff. Then take your bats and balls and go home.
Go down to 150 games
The best way to deal with tanking is to have a reverse draft order between the six worst teams. That would usually, but not always be the cellar dweller of the respective division. So the team with the best record among the six worst teams gets the first pick.
This has several beneficial goals:
1) it incentivizes winning, so teams no longer have a reason to tank
2) It increases the value of cheap and almost washed up free agents, because teams need to try and get that extra win or two.
3) It creates enthusiasm among the fan bases, because they are rooting for their team to win rather than lose, and there’s a source of pride in being the best of the worst, even if you’re one of the worst. It eliminates that schadenfreude of “hey we’re a laughingstock! But we got the first pick!”
4) It makes it harder on the teams who are looking forward to pummeling a fellow division team 19 times a season, and would help balance out the unbalanced strengths between the divisions.
5) Because those bottoms six teams would now be trying to win instead of lose, it would make more watchable baseball all around.
Finally, the seventh and eighth worst teams are probably good enough that there would be no benefit to them to tank so as to get into that group of six, so the benefit of the tanking process would be minimized overall.
Stop talking about yourself.
Seriously, what do you think is wrong with it and what do you suggest instead, or do you prefer the status quo?
There are proposals offered in any negotiation that tend to fall in three categories: Plausable, Improbable and JUST…PLAIN…STUPID.
If you need help regarding the latter category, you obviously don’t follow baseball. You’ve just motivated me to finally avail myself of the “”Mute” button.
Whatever happens during the CBA negotiations, I hope Baltimore gets a Major League Team.
Get rid of interleague games. Need to get back to playing more in your own league. These AL/NL games in the last month of the season are just stupid.
Endless buffoonery from this clown