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W and Nolan on Opening Day 2011. Opening Day 2012 won't be delayed.
The expanded playoffs will no doubt water down the playoffs and, in some ways, cheapen the playoffs. A team who was deep and fought hard all season could play one bad game against a lesser-known pitcher who no one in the lineup has seen and be out. It does, however, provide another avenue to make the playoffs and if Texas is that second wild-card team, I'll be singing a different tune. Win the division, own October and it won't matter.
The Astros are going to be fun. It'll be nice to have at least one away division series in the same time zone. They're clearly in a rebuilding mode but new ownership should make the games meaningful and fire up the fans.
The new CBA is going to change the way teams build. Drafting and international player caps will hurt teams like the Rangers who have put together a stellar scouting team and worked tirelessly to develop international players.
It's not a CBA that should make their front office happy but it could be worse. This CBA is crippling to the smaller-market teams. The Rangers will find a way to continue to be successful. Jon Daniels continues to put this team in a position to compete year after year.
Baseball has a CBA though. We've seen the NBA and NFL drag fans through months of not knowing if there will be seasons. Pitchers and catchers will report in late February. We won't have to miss baseball any longer than we normally have to.