There are talks about the MLB wanting to expand their postseason from 10 to 16 teams, and to put it simply: it’s controversial.
MLB has been known for it’s smaller playoffs, as compared to other major professional sports. With only 10 teams out of the 30, MLB only allows 30% of their teams into the postseason, the lowest percentage out of the major sports, including the NBA, NFL, and NHL. This could change, with Jon Heyman reporting that the MLB and the union are in talks about a 16 team playoff, meaning 53% of the MLB would get into the playoffs. The question most people have is: WHY?
Cheapening the Playoffs
If there were expanded playoffs, the AL would’ve had the Texas Rangers make the postseason at 78-84, which would not go over well with fans. Do I think this is bad for the sport? Yes for the allure of the playoffs, but not a complete whiff.
Let’s start with the bad first. MLB having their playoffs increase by three teams in each league isn’t great for the competitive side. MLB postseason has the allure of being difficult to get into the playoffs; they’re not something you can coast into. Last year the 93 win Indians MISSED the playoffs, this was because of the 96-win Rays and 97-win A’s. Getting an expansion to the playoffs that’s this big cheapens the allure of making it.
Expand the MLB Postseason To Bring In Cash
The best part of this for the MLB is the ratings and extra money, which I think is best for the sport. Yes, it feels like a cheap way to do it, but MLB can expand the season – and if they do – they can possibly have fans in the stands for some playoff games. This is an economic-minded move, but it’s not greedy. It’s logical and doesn’t cut any games. Yes, the season could be better. We would love 162 games and 10- team playoffs, but COVID made it very difficult.
I’m a fan of small playoffs, but I am willing to waive that for the betterment of the league and its players. We need to pay the minor leaguers better and ensure salaries for employees. That is a much easier goal to attain with expanded playoffs for now. I don’t think it’s a permanent change, so I can deal with it (for now).
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