Jump to content

What if the MLB is like the NFL


The SHOW
 Share

Recommended Posts

Now that's the MLB Postseason is off and running it got me thinking how the MLB Postseason would look under the NFL Playoff format...

AL

Wildcard Series (Best of 3)

(6)Tigers vs (3)Red Sox

(5)Orioles vs (4)Blue Jays

 Division Series

Low Seed vs (1)Rangers

High seed vs (2)Indians

 

NL

Wildcard Series (Best of 3)

(6)Cardinals vs (3)Dodgers

(5)Giants vs (4)Mets

 Division Series 

Low seed vs (1)Cubs

High seed vs (2)Nationals

 

LCS (Best of 5)

World Series (Best of 7) Team with best record host Game 1!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 minutes ago, OnWis97 said:

Many (myself included) stand firm that you cannot have byes for multi-game series.  It probably serves as a disadvantage to the "bye" team.

Especially in a game like baseball that relies more on things like rythm and doesn't really have wear and tear like football. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Theo Epstein has suggested the WC game be a best of 3 over 2 days, the first day being a doubleheader.  I'm not sure I'd want playoff teams completely & utterly burned out on that + quick travel.  

Pitching staffs would be dead by that.

Keep it as it is, it's fine.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, OnWis97 said:

Many (myself included) stand firm that you cannot have byes for multi-game series.  It probably serves as a disadvantage to the "bye" team.

Probably true but on the plus side the pitcher would be well rested

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, 2001mark said:

Theo Epstein has suggested the WC game be a best of 3 over 2 days, the first day being a doubleheader.  I'm not sure I'd want playoff teams completely & utterly burned out on that + quick travel.  

Pitching staffs would be dead by that.

Keep it as it is, it's fine.

I think Doubleheader would be crazy 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, 2001mark said:

Theo Epstein has suggested the WC game be a best of 3 over 2 days, the first day being a doubleheader.  I'm not sure I'd want playoff teams completely & utterly burned out on that + quick travel.  

Pitching staffs would be dead by that.

Keep it as it is, it's fine.

Go win your division, then.

 

I'd go a step further and give the #1 seed four home games in a 5-game series with the #4-seed Wild Card team.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 minutes ago, HedleyLamarr said:

Go win your division, then.

 

I'd go a step further and give the #1 seed four home games in a 5-game series with the #4-seed Wild Card team.

 

I was a big advocate for this instead of the one game playoff and keeping it at only one wildcard team.

 

How would you arrange the games though? 1-4 it really hamstrings the Wildcard team, but 2-1-2 gives them a chance to end the series at home, but makes for weird travel. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, McCarthy said:

 

I was a big advocate for this instead of the one game playoff and keeping it at only one wildcard team.

 

How would you arrange the games though? 1-4 it really hamstrings the Wildcard team, but 2-1-2 gives them a chance to end the series at home, but makes for weird travel. 

True and if the Wildcard was a 3 games series instead of 1-1-1 the 5th seed would open Game 1 and the 4 seed hist 2 & 3

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, McCarthy said:

 

I was a big advocate for this instead of the one game playoff and keeping it at only one wildcard team.

 

How would you arrange the games though? 1-4 it really hamstrings the Wildcard team, but 2-1-2 gives them a chance to end the series at home, but makes for weird travel. 

Those are the advantageous breaks the top seed should get over the team that wasn't good enough to win their division.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's perfect how it is, truly.  WC is now a play-in post season spot.  If a 96 win team loses their division by 3 games, & loses the WC game at home to a 91 win team, tough.  

We're not giving out participation trophies here.  162 games.  We canned the lone WC spot for a reason.

 

This argument always has some sort of recency bias where a home WC team feels shafted somehow by losing.  As if that's bad for the game.

As opposed to nearly every team but 2-3 in each league in playoff/WC contention nearly to the final week of the season.  That's best for the game, when most teams aren't unloading stars for youth to the few every f'n August.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The issue with the one-game playoff is that after 162 games, one game in baseball is just meaningless...you need at least a three-game series to reflect the "full" team.  The Giants, by virtue of having Madison Bumgarner, are built for a one game playoff (assuming they have the luxury of setting their rotation).  The Giants, for a seven-game series would not be the same team as they are for one game...that's true of everyone.  Add to that the idea that the better Wild Card team (say, with a 7-game lead on the second team) may not  have the luxury of setting its rotation after fighting for a division title.  There is too much possibility for the second team to have the advantage due to somewhat random circumstances; it cuts into the integrity of the pennant race.  In this case, the Mets had as much ability to set their rotation as the Giants so I don't have a ton of angst...but this was not the Mets vs. the Giants.  It was a one-game snapshot of each.  Play that out to a best-of-five and you get a better reflection of the full team.

 

If the NBA wanted to have the 8 and 9 teams play a one-game "first round," well that would be stupid but at least the one game is a truer reflection of both teams.  I don't think that would detract from the integrity of the NBA playoff race as much as MLB's scheme has the potential to do.

 

The benefit I saw to the four-team per league structure was that the #2 team in the league did not get beaten out by two weaker division winners.  Sure that could happen to the #3 team, but to me putting in that one extra team works.  Then get on with it. It worked great.  The only thing that needed to change was a balanced schedule.  Playing the Twins 19 times is too advantageous in a Wild Card race.  Unfortunately, they'll never balance the schedule because Yankees/Red Sox.

 

You could point out that this year the O's and Jays woulda played that game anyway.  That's OK...when you play 162 and tie, you just extend the season...that's not the same thing as letting a team a few games behind come in with its HOFer for one game.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, HedleyLamarr said:

Those are the advantageous breaks the top seed should get over the team that wasn't good enough to win their division.

 

I mostly agree. Similarly, I don't think a team should be eligible for the college football playoff if they didn't win their conference, but that's for another thread. 

 

Where in the series order would you stick the one home game for the wildcard though? I guess first is the only place that makes sense. This eliminates a travel day too. 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't feel a great need to "punish" the Wild Card winner, to be honest. Making them face the #1 seed, without home field advantage, is enough in my book. Keep in mind, the Wild Card winner is usually better than at least one of the division winners in their league, record-wise. It's pretty rare for all three division winners in a league to have a better record than the best second place team. This was a somewhat strange year in that all 6 division winners across baseball had better records than any of the Wild Card teams.

 

So essentially, when the WC winner has a better record than at least one division winner, the Wild Card team was a.) likely in a better division than at least one of the division winners, and b.) played to a better record than said division winner. And even if they don't have as good a record as any of the division winners, I really don't feel a need to punish the WC winner - just have them be the low seed, and be done with it.

 

We don't go through this charade of "punishing the Wild Card winner(s)" in any other sport - why is it a necessity in baseball?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

34 minutes ago, OnWis97 said:

The issue with the one-game playoff is that after 162 games, one game in baseball is just meaningless...you need at least a three-game series to reflect the "full" team.  The Giants, by virtue of having Madison Bumgarner, are built for a one game playoff (assuming they have the luxury of setting their rotation).  The Giants, for a seven-game series would not be the same team as they are for one game...that's true of everyone.  Add to that the idea that the better Wild Card team (say, with a 7-game lead on the second team) may not  have the luxury of setting its rotation after fighting for a division title.  There is too much possibility for the second team to have the advantage due to somewhat random circumstances; it cuts into the integrity of the pennant race.  In this case, the Mets had as much ability to set their rotation as the Giants so I don't have a ton of angst...but this was not the Mets vs. the Giants.  It was a one-game snapshot of each.  Play that out to a best-of-five and you get a better reflection of the full team.

 

You could point out that this year the O's and Jays woulda played that game anyway.  That's OK...when you play 162 and tie, you just extend the season...that's not the same thing as letting a team a few games behind come in with its HOFer for one game.

 

The Mets and Giants were tied at the end of the season, and would have been playing a game 163 anyway, but your point still stands.

 

3 minutes ago, kroywen said:

We don't go through this charade of "punishing the Wild Card winner(s)" in any other sport - why is it a necessity in baseball?

 

For nearly 70 years, the only teams to play in the World Series were the teams with the best record in their respective leagues. Once divisions arrived in 1969, the field only grew to four playoff teams, which lasted for 24 years. The Wild Card is a relatively new phenomenon in baseball, and the second Wild Card gets people nervous about "unworthy" teams finding their way into the playoffs. Hence why we have a greater reactionary desire to "punish" the Wild Card winner. It didn't help that the first NL Wild Card game involved a lower-seeded team eeking out a lucky break due to stupidity on behalf of several people (and Chipper Jones' errors, something lost in the 2012 NL Wild Card narrative).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Two reasons that I can determine: history and the nature of the regular season. 

 

For most of baseball history the "wild card" team's punishment was they weren't allowed in the postseason tournament. See: 93 Giants. Now that they're allowed to compete for the whole championship there's this feeling that it shouldn't get the same shot as the team that beat them out to "earn" their place in the playoffs the old fashioned way and not the "cheap" second place way. I agree with that.

 

As for the regular season, baseball has the largest sample size of any and if after 162 games you're not the best team in your division I think it's been determined who the better team is and it's not you. I know the league expanded the playoffs so more fanbases are interested and they can earn more money so we're never going back to the 4 team postseason, but still. In the NFL with only 16 games that's such a small number than a huge variety of factors can determine who wins the division and why. It's only fair to give teams a cushion or a safety and provide another means of gettting into the tournament. Baseball is different though. If you couldn't be the best team in your division over 162 games you should have to face some sort of handicap. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, McCarthy said:

Two reasons that I can determine: history and the nature of the regular season. 

 

For most of baseball history the "wild card" team's punishment was they weren't allowed in the postseason tournament. See: 93 Giants. Now that they're allowed to compete for the whole championship there's this feeling that it shouldn't get the same shot as the team that beat them out to "earn" their place in the playoffs the old fashioned way and not the "cheap" second place way. I agree with that.

 

As for the regular season, baseball has the largest sample size of any and if after 162 games you're not the best team in your division I think it's been determined who the better team is and it's not you. I know the league expanded the playoffs so more fanbases are interested and they can earn more money so we're never going back to the 4 team postseason, but still. In the NFL with only 16 games that's such a small number than a huge variety of factors can determine who wins the division and why. It's only fair to give teams a cushion or a safety and provide another means of gettting into the tournament. Baseball is different though. If you couldn't be the best team in your division over 162 games you should have to face some sort of handicap. 

In principle, I would agree that the full regular season is much, much better at determining who the better team is. FWIW, I'd say that for the NBA and NHL as well. In an ideal world, I'd love to go back to the days where the World Series features the teams with the best records in their respective leagues. I'd even prefer the old 2-round format that existed prior to 1994. But that's obviously never going to happen again.

 

But under the 3-round system, I don't feel a need to "punish" the wild card winner precisely because the regular season is more indicative of the better team. My preference would be to take the best 4 records in the league, regardless of geography, and put them in the playoffs. You'd potentially have end-of-season pennant races for the last spot in the playoffs, as well as for home field advantage in the first round (the 1 and 2 seeds). 

 

The Wild Card winner often will have a better record than at least one division winner in their league. So if the regular season is more indicative of the best team, wouldn't that situation generally indicate that the Wild Card winner is in fact better than said division winner? So in that case, the Wild Card winner is being punished just because of where they're located geographically.

 

If you want to reward superior play in the regular season, then simply seed the teams based on their record, allowing the best team to face the weakest in the first round, and giving the best team home field advantage throughout the playoffs. I think that's far more fair to all involved than the existing Wild Card system.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, SFGiants58 said:

 

The Mets and Giants were tied at the end of the season, and would have been playing a game 163 anyway, but your point still stands.

 

D'oh.  I knew that of the AL's bird teams, but for some reason thought the Mets finished ahead.  So yeah, in this case it makes total sense.  But in theory...

 

---

 

I think the big number "162" sticks out in MLB.  But I do agree that "82" in the NBA and NHL is probably enough to warrant fewer playoff teams.  

 

It's a balance between "integrity of the playoff race" vs. "entertainment."  From a pure integrity standpoint, MLB, pre-1969 is the way to go.  After a 162-game season an 85-win team (see 1987 Twins and 2006 Cardinals at 83) probably does not "deserve" to be in the World Series over a 95-win team.  On the other hand, seeing the majority of teams out of it by August every year would probably have a negative impact nowadays with more sports options; in 1968, MLB still may have been right there with the NFL; now it's way behind and in September, it's valuable to have more than say, five of 30 teams alive.  My preference is the four-per-league format, which gives hope to most teams hovering around .500 well into the second half of the season, offsets some of the "weak division" issue by at least rewarding the #2 team, and still leaves MLB as that one team sport in which "making the playoffs" is special.  I think for integrity it is (at least sometimes) better than the old four-division format, which, when on division was particularly weak, could allow an inferior team in ahead of a 100-win team.  Integrity is best with no divisions, but even a traditionalist like myself does not think that is viable in today's world.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, OnWis97 said:

You could point out that this year the O's and Jays woulda played that game anyway.  That's OK...when you play 162 and tie, you just extend the season...that's not the same thing as letting a team a few games behind come in with its HOFer for one game.

 

Interestingly, this has been the scenario in both years that the Orioles have qualified as a wild card  They finished tied with the No. 1 wild card and played on the road . . . just like a play-in game in the 1995-2011 setup.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.