MLB Playoff Schedule 2015: Start Times, Dates, Live Stream and TV Info

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistOctober 5, 2015

Toronto Blue Jays outfielders, from left, Ben Revere, Jose Bautista and Kevin Pillar celebrate after the Blue Jays defeated the Atlanta Braves 5-0 in a baseball game Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
John Bazemore/Associated Press

The bracket is set and the 10 teams have secured their places in the 2015 MLB playoffs.

This year's field has a great mix of the usual suspects—the New York Yankees, St. Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Dodgers—and some teams making their long-awaited returns to the postseason—the Toronto Blue Jays, New York Mets, Chicago Cubs and Houston Astros.

Then you also have the Pittsburgh Pirates, Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers, all of whom have tasted relative success recently after years out in the cold but were unable to go all the way and collect a ring.

Fans won't be lacking in compelling storylines to follow once the action gets underway.

Playoff Schedule

2015 MLB Wild Card Schedule
DateTime (ET)AwayHomeTV InfoLive Stream
AL Wild Card
Tues., Oct. 68 pm.Houston AstrosNew York YankeesESPNWatch ESPN
NL Wild Card
Wed., Oct. 78 p.m.Chicago CubsPittsburgh PiratesTBSWatch TBS
Source: MLB.com
2015 ALDS Schedule—Kansas City Royals vs. AL Wild Card Winner
GameDateTime (ET)AwayHomeTV InfoLive Stream
1Thurs., Oct. 8TBDWild CardRoyalsFox, FS1, MLBNFox Sports Go
2Fri., Oct. 9TBDWild CardRoyalsFox, FS1, MLBNFox Sports Go
3Sun., Oct. 11TBDRoyalsWild CardFox, FS1, MLBNFox Sports Go
4*Mon., Oct. 12TBDRoyalsWild CardFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
5*Wed., Oct. 14TBDWild CardRoyalsFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
Source: MLB.com
2015 ALDS Schedule—Toronto Blue Jays vs. Texas Rangers
GameDateTime (ET)AwayHomeTV InfoLive Stream
1Thurs., Oct. 8TBDRangersBlue JaysFox, FS1, MLBNFox Sports Go
2Fri., Oct. 9TBDRangersBlue JaysFox, FS1, MLBNFox Sports Go
3Sun., Oct. 11TBDBlue JaysRangersFox, FS1, MLBNFox Sports Go
4*Mon., Oct. 12TBDBlue JaysRangersFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
5*Wed., Oct. 14TBDRangersBlue JaysFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
Source: MLB.com
2015 NLDS Schedule—St. Louis Cardinals vs. NL Wild Card Winner
GameDateTime (ET)AwayHomeTV InfoLive Stream
1Fri., Oct. 9TBDWild CardCardinalsTBSWatch TBS
2Sat., Oct. 10TBDWild CardCardinalsTBSWatch TBS
3Mon., Oct. 12TBDCardinalsWild CardTBSWatch TBS
4*Tues., Oct. 13TBDCardinalsWild CardTBSWatch TBS
5*Thurs., Oct. 15TBDWild CardCardinalsTBSWatch TBS
Source: MLB.com
2015 NLDS Schedule—Los Angeles Dodgers vs. New York Mets
GameDateTime (ET)AwayHomeTV InfoLive Stream
1Fri., Oct. 9TBDMetsDodgersTBSWatch TBS
2Sat., Oct. 10TBDMetsDodgersTBSWatch TBS
3Mon., Oct. 12TBDDodgersMetsTBSWatch TBS
4*Tues., Oct. 13TBDDodgersMetsTBSWatch TBS
5*Thurs., Oct. 15TBDMetsDodgersTBSWatch TBS
Source: MLB.com
2015 ALCS Schedule
GameDateTime (ET)AwayHomeTV InfoLive Stream
1Fri., Oct. 16TBDAL Lower SeedAL Higher SeedFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
2Sat., Oct. 17TBDAL Lower SeedAL Higher SeedFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
3Mon., Oct. 19TBDAL Higher SeedAL Lower SeedFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
4Tues., Oct. 20TBDAL Higher SeedAL Lower SeedFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
5*Wed., Oct. 21TBDAL Higher SeedAL Lower SeedFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
6*Fri., Oct. 23TBDAL Lower SeedAL Higher SeedFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
7*Sat., Oct. 24TBDAL Lower SeedAL Higher SeedFox or FS1Fox Sports Go
Source: MLB.com
2015 NLCS Schedule
GameDateTime (ET)AwayHomeTV InfoLive Stream
1Sat., Oct. 17TBDNL Lower SeedNL Higher SeedTBSWatch TBS
2Sun., Oct. 18TBDNL Lower SeedNL Higher SeedTBSWatch TBS
3Tues., Oct. 20TBDNL Higher SeedNL Lower SeedTBSWatch TBS
4Wed., Oct. 21TBDNL Higher SeedNL Lower SeedTBSWatch TBS
5*Thurs., Oct. 22TBDNL Higher SeedNL Lower SeedTBSWatch TBS
6*Sat., Oct. 24TBDNL Lower SeedNL Higher SeedTBSWatch TBS
7*Sun., Oct. 25TBDNL Lower SeedNL Higher SeedTBSWatch TBS
Source: MLB.com
2015 World Series Schedule
GameDateTime (ET)AwayHomeTV InfoLive Stream
1Tues., Oct. 27TBDNL ChampionAL ChampionFoxFox Sports Go
2Wed., Oct. 28TBDNL ChampionAL ChampionFoxFox Sports Go
3Fri., Oct. 30TBDAL ChampionNL ChampionFoxFox Sports Go
4Sat., Oct. 31TBDAL ChampionNL ChampionFoxFox Sports Go
5*Sun., Nov. 1TBDAL ChampionNL ChampionFoxFox Sports Go
6*Tues., Nov. 3TBDNL ChampionAL ChampionFoxFox Sports Go
7*Wed., Nov. 4TBDNL ChampionAL ChampionFoxFox Sports Go
Source: MLB.com

Storylines to Watch

Can the New York Mets Capitalize on Their Postseason Window?

Kathy Willens/Associated Press

The New York Mets have made just four playoff appearances since winning the World Series in 1986. While the franchise is building around a talented core of young stars, the fanbase knows this year's postseason run can't be taken for granted.

Give credit to ownership for actually recognizing this window of opportunity and approving the deadline deals that energized a previously anemic offense. Juan Uribe and Kelly Johnson helped fill some holes in the lineup, and Yoenis Cespedes was the proverbial missing piece of the puzzle.

Since arriving in the Big Apple, Cespedes is hitting .286 with 17 home runs, 44 runs batted in and a .604 slugging percentage. Fox Sports' JP Morosi went so far as to call the 29-year-old an MVP candidate:

I happen to think Cespedes shouldn't be penalized for opening 2015 in the AL. If, by the end of the season, he's judged to be the most valuable among those players who finished the year in the NL, then he should win the award — especially because he performed so brilliantly for the Mets during the defining stretch of their season.

[...]

One could argue that — despite spending only two regular-season months with the Mets — Cespedes is the player most responsible for flipping the NL East race between early August and now.

No matter what he does beyond this season and no matter if he stays in New York, Mets fans will forever remember Cespedes for his contributions this year.

As much as the offensive improvement helped the Mets seal a playoff spot, their pitching staff is what will determine their World Series hopes. According to FanGraphs, New York ranks fourth in starter ERA (3.45), sixth in starter FIP (3.51) and fourth in starter xFIP (3.51).

But as good as Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey, Noah Syndergaard and Jon Niese have been, they're all untested in the postseason. None of the four are unfamiliar to tense situations—they helped the Mets win a division. But playoff baseball is a different animal, and every mistake is magnified.

Even Clayton Kershaw can't escape the criticism he wilts in the Los Angeles Dodgers' most important games in October.

You want to believe the Mets are built to contend for years down the road, but the same was thought of the 1986 Mets with Dwight Gooden, Darryl Strawberry, Kevin Mitchell, Ron Darling and Lenny Dykstra leading the way.

Instead, New York made one more postseason appearance in 1988 before everything fell apart.

Maybe this year's Mets can at least bring home a World Series ring, thus giving the fans something to enjoy should their fortunes unravel in the coming years.

Does the Toronto Blue Jays' Gambit Pay off in the End?

Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press

Teams making a big trade in pursuit of a World Series title isn't a new trend. But rarely do you see the Toronto Blue Jays' level of commitment to winning now.

They bet the farm on David Price and Troy Tulowitzki in a bid to get back to the Fall Classic. The Jays also traded for Josh Donaldson in the offseason and spent big money to sign Russell Martin, so the strategy started well before the arrivals of Price and Tulowitzki.

Speaking to the Toronto Sun's Mike Rutsey following the Price trade, Toronto manager John Gibbons admitted he saw that move as the sign general manager Alex Anthopoulos was going "all in" on a ring in 2015.

"Yeah I think so, we need to do something now no question about that," Gibbons said. "You look at the two trades he's made, they're impact guys, they're at the top of MLB. It's not like he went out and grabbed some guys you're hoping can do something. They're guys that have been productive their whole careers. So we dove in head first."

The Blue Jays continue to be the best offensive team in baseball despite Troy Tulowitzki having been out of the lineup since Sept. 12. As Sports Illustrated's Emma Span noted, the All-Star shortstop wasn't necessarily hitting the ball well in Toronto even before his injury, yet his presence has still helped the team:

Tulo returned to the lineup in last Friday's 8-4 win over the Tampa Bay Rays, which was a great sign for the Jays. Having him get just that little bit of work in was pivotal as the postseason approaches.

As much things are looking great for Toronto now, it wouldn't take much for the franchise to slink back into being good, not great. Like the Mets, you wonder whether this year is a sign of things to come for the Blue Jays or the franchise's one real shot to win a championship.

Mark Shapiro will join the Jays as team president next year, which should ideally secure the team's future for the long term with respect to remaining a contender. But Shapiro will have a few issues to help sort out as soon as he arrives.

Price is a free agent at the end of the season, and there's no guarantee he'll re-sign with the team. Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion are 34 and 32, respectively, while the team is also relying on ageless wonders Mark Buehrle and R.A. Dickey, the former of whom is almost assuredly walking away from the game after this year.

In Marcus Stroman and Dalton Pompey, the Jays have building blocks for the future, but they're still relying heavily on a number of veterans who are on the downward trajectory of their careers—or somewhat injury prone in the case of Tulowitzki.

If Toronto can't put it all together in 2015, then it may look back on the season with regret. The Washington Nationals are all the evidence necessary to show future success is never a guarantee in MLB.

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