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New Playoff Model for MLB?

Jason LempertCorrespondent IMarch 20, 2009

I had a thought the other day—what if the MLB arranged its Playoff schedule like the NBA or the NHL? That is, have the division winners as the top three seeds in their league, and then fill out the postseason with the five next-best teams from the NL and AL?

To illustrate, this is how the 2008 National League standings would have looked under this system (teams followed by their win/loss and winning percentage):

Chicago Cubs: 97-64, .602

Philadelphia Phillies: 92-70, .568

Los Angeles Dodgers: 84-78. .519

Milwaukee Brewers: 90-72, .556

New York Mets: 89-73, .549

Houston Astros: 86-75, .534

St. Louis Cardinals: 86-76, .531

Florida Marlins: 84-77, .522


Arizona Diamondbacks: 82-80, .506

Cincinnati Reds: 74-88, .457

Colorado Rockies: 74-88, .457

Atlanta Braves: 72-90, .444

San Francisco Giants: 72-90, .444

Pittsburgh Pirates: 67-95, .414

San Diego Padres: 63-99, .389

Washington Nationals: 59-102, .366


The Playoff schedule would then have looked something like this:

Marlins @ Cubs

Cardinals @ Phillies

Astros @ Dodgers

Mets @ Brewers


Of course, this would work best if MLB did some slight realignment and put 15 teams in each league, so as to even things out.

I am in no way saying this is how the MLB should setup their fall, but it's a neat way to see what teams really deserve to be in the postseason while simultaneously putting a new spin on the Playoffs.

For kicks, here is how the American League would have shaped up:

Los Angeles Angles: 100-62, .617

Tampa Bay Rays: 97-65, .599

Boston Red Sox: 95-67, .586

Chicago White Sox: 89-74, 546

New York Yankees: 89-73, .549

Minnesota Twins: 88-75, .540

Toronto Blue Jays: 86-76, .531

Cleveland Indians: 81-81, .500


Texas Rangers: 79-83, .488

Oakland A's: 75-86, .466

Kansas City Royals: 75-87, .463

Detroit Tigers: 74-88, .457

Baltimore Orioles: 68-93, .422

Seattle Mariners: 61-101, .377


With their side of the Playoffs featuring:

Indians @ Angels

Blue Jays @ Rays

Twins @ Red Sox

Yankees @ White Sox

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