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The 7 - Baseball - Realignment
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BigDaddyLoco
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#1 Posted on 12.6.11 1040.49
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1044.33
This doesn't sound like it is anywhere close to happening, but it is a pretty radical idea even by realignment standards Click Here (sports.espn.go.com).

15 teams in both the AL and NL in two giant divisions vying for five playoff spots each. I don't think it's the worst idea out there, but the one thing I do not like is there will always be one interleague series being played. I'd like to see a more balanced schedule, but I still haven't seen a way to do that without getting rid of interleague play, which isn't going to happen.

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#2 Posted on 12.6.11 1121.06
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1122.40
ESPN is already saying its going to happen. I think it would be awesome if they took the Yankees or Red Sox to the NL. Just so the NL gets some love. The real problem for Baseball is not the leagues its how long the schedule is. They need to start in April and end in August or September. This won't happen due to the amount of money these teams get for TV and live attendance. I would love a 100 game season with no inter-league play.
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#3 Posted on 12.6.11 1130.15
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1132.15
ESPN also said that a 96 team NCAA Tournament was going to happen.

If they want to really be radical then this is definitely the perfect time to ditch interleague play. If you want to keep the few match ups people care about (New York/New York, Chicago/Chicago, etc) then just realign them into the same leagues.
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#4 Posted on 12.6.11 1228.28
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1229.01
Why were the Brewers moved over to the NL?
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#5 Posted on 12.6.11 1449.08
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1449.56

It's a similar model to the rumored 3-division schedule the NHL is considered after the next CBA.
edoug
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#6 Posted on 12.6.11 1457.23
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1458.24
The last time MLB expanded one team went to the AL, Tampa Bay and Arizona to the NL. That would have been 15 teams in each league. They didn't want to have Interleague games just about everyday so Milwaukee went to the NL. If they do realign the way they're saying, it just means Boston, New York and Tampa will all make it to the playoffs every year insteas of 2 of the 3. Unless tampa goes to the NL.
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#7 Posted on 12.6.11 1547.41
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1547.42
I don't particularly care about balancing the leagues, though if you forced me to pick a position of course I'd say it's a good thing. But I LOVE times a million the idea of getting rid of the divisions. I REALLY hope this happens.

Though, if anything and everything were on the table, I'd say the better solution is to add or drop two teams to balance the leagues that way and do away with interleague play all together.

(edited by TheBucsFan on 12.6.11 2254)
PeterStork
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#8 Posted on 12.6.11 1719.28
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1720.24
    Originally posted by Oliver
    Why were the Brewers moved over to the NL?


To avoid having interleague play every day of the season after MLB put both expansion teams in different leagues rather than the same like it was done when the leagues, then legally separate bodies, expanded in each previous round.

    Originally posted by edoug
    If they do realign the way they're saying, it just means Boston, New York and Tampa will all make it to the playoffs every year insteas of 2 of the 3. Unless tampa goes to the NL.


This is assuming Tampa can keep this up. Not to knock the franchise, which I have no ill will against, but under current conditions they won't be able to keep up long term success like their mates have when you can't keep/attract big moneymakers like BOS and NYY. Having every single pick in the first six rounds of the 2011 MLB Draft helps matters, but those kiddies have to develop, and if they do they have to get paid eventually. Cincinnati and perhaps Kansas City and maybe even Pittsburgh will eventually face the same issue.

On the overall plan, I'm not sure of the whole interleague play every day portion of the plan, but given MLB spent the better part of seven decades with no divisions within leagues I'm not entirely opposed to the realignment. The history doesn't mean it would work, or just because we revere the olden days that we should aim to relive them, but it would be a fair way to choose the four or five teams that make it to October and then rank them for home field advantage (which is already done that way.) All you do is eliminate a weak division champion from getting a bid just because of geographic luck, and as a card-carrying fan of the NL Central I can speak for the logic in this. Balanced schedules make sense, whether or not you stay with divisions, and there would certainly be balance to this plan. More playoff teams is the only thing I would be wary of.
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#9 Posted on 12.6.11 1827.35
Reposted on: 12.6.18 1827.45
    Originally posted by PeterStork
      Originally posted by Oliver
      Why were the Brewers moved over to the NL?


    To avoid having interleague play every day of the season after MLB put both expansion teams in different leagues rather than the same like it was done when the leagues, then legally separate bodies, expanded in each previous round.

      Originally posted by edoug
      If they do realign the way they're saying, it just means Boston, New York and Tampa will all make it to the playoffs every year insteas of 2 of the 3. Unless tampa goes to the NL.


    This is assuming Tampa can keep this up. Not to knock the franchise, which I have no ill will against, but under current conditions they won't be able to keep up long term success like their mates have when you can't keep/attract big moneymakers like BOS and NYY. Having every single pick in the first six rounds of the 2011 MLB Draft helps matters, but those kiddies have to develop, and if they do they have to get paid eventually. Cincinnati and perhaps Kansas City and maybe even Pittsburgh will eventually face the same issue.

    On the overall plan, I'm not sure of the whole interleague play every day portion of the plan, but given MLB spent the better part of seven decades with no divisions within leagues I'm not entirely opposed to the realignment. The history doesn't mean it would work, or just because we revere the olden days that we should aim to relive them, but it would be a fair way to choose the four or five teams that make it to October and then rank them for home field advantage (which is already done that way.) All you do is eliminate a weak division champion from getting a bid just because of geographic luck, and as a card-carrying fan of the NL Central I can speak for the logic in this. Balanced schedules make sense, whether or not you stay with divisions, and there would certainly be balance to this plan. More playoff teams is the only thing I would be wary of.

I think The Rays should be good for a while.I think they're a lot like the Royals were in the Mid-Seventies.

I don't think it's a bad idea to reinvent yourself every half century or so. Yes I know division play started in '69 but still the point is pretty much the same. As a Red Sox fan, I'm not excited of the extra West Coast and other later time zone games.
redsoxnation
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#10 Posted on 12.6.11 2103.41
Reposted on: 12.6.18 2104.05
Difference between this non-divisional format and pre-1969 format is that pre-'69 it was 1 team, now it would be 5. Also, weak divisions keep extra teams in the race and potentially increases ticket sales. If the Pirates were hovering around .500 the last week of the season but only a game out of the division, would they bang out the ballpark?
Mr. Boffo
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#11 Posted on 12.6.11 2222.56
Reposted on: 12.6.18 2223.06
I spent the day getting caught up on the Poscast with Joe Posnanski. On one of the episodes from a month ago, he talked with Bob Costas about the idea of a second wildcard (which must have been when the news of that idea first came out). Costas pointed out that adding a second wildcard potentially fixes one problem (teams not caring about winning their division), but potentially adds another (if the second wildcard had no chance of winning their division, so they are better positioned for the playoff than the first wildcard, who was fighting hard to win their division but failed).

Now instead we're talking about 5 teams per league, but no divisions. Frankly, if you're going to not have any divisions, why do you need a 5th playoff team? Why does the 3rd team (which is no longer a division champion) get to play the winner of the 4/5 matchup? EDIT: Yeah, that was stupid of me. Never mind that part. Why not just have 4 teams per league like they already do? The only difference between that and the current system is that you've replace a bad conference champion with a better second wildcard team, basically.

Or you could make it 6 like the NFL does, and have the bottom 4 teams each play a 3 game series, and each of the winners play one of those top two teams who had buys. I get the feeling that they are working backwards from the 5 playoff teams per league idea (and the extra playoff revenue that would entail, naturally), then trying to figure out the best way to make it work. And that doesn't fill me with confidence.

(edited by Mr. Boffo on 12.6.11 2310)
PeterStork
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#12 Posted on 12.6.11 2243.26
Reposted on: 12.6.18 2243.39
    Originally posted by Mr. Boffo
    Why does the 3rd team (which is no longer a division champion) get to play the winner of the 4/5 matchup? Why not just have 4 teams per league like they already do? The only difference between that and the current system is that you've replace a bad conference champion with a better second wildcard team, basically.


To be fair, they wouldn't. 1 would play 4/5, giving the outright league leader the advantage of playing a team that just had to win a series (or hopefully for the sake of everyone's sanity just one game) and is probably not as prepared as the top seed. Meanwhile 2 and 3 beat up on each other.

They can do just four, but a play-in between 4 and 5...or even 3 vs 6 and 4 vs 5...would work fine, giving an extra advantage to the top two.
thecubsfan
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#13 Posted on 12.6.11 2322.42
Reposted on: 12.6.18 2323.16
(deleted by CRZ on 13.6.11 0055)
thecubsfan
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#14 Posted on 12.6.11 2322.42
Reposted on: 12.6.18 2323.17
    Originally posted by PeterStork
      Originally posted by Oliver
      Why were the Brewers moved over to the NL?


    To avoid having interleague play every day of the season after MLB put both expansion teams in different leagues rather than the same like it was done when the leagues, then legally separate bodies, expanded in each previous round.


That, and the Brewers were smart enough to realize they could sell a lot of tickets to Cubs fans who would make the 90 minute trip for away Cubs games (in much greater numbers than White Sox fans.)

The Royals were offered the NL move first, and I believe the Diamondbacks could've come in as an AL team but requested to be in as a NL team (which required the move the other way.)

I agree with the initial post - this sounds like a trial balloon being sent out to get reaction, and not a final theory. It does seem like something's going to be done to add another playoff spot (and to "fix" AL East) - it's probably not the final idea, and there will be more of these to come. Whatever happens, it'll probably be settled at the same time as the labor agreement.

(edited by thecubsfan on 12.6.11 2324)
thecubsfan
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#15 Posted on 12.6.11 2322.42
Reposted on: 12.6.18 2323.17
    Originally posted by PeterStork
      Originally posted by Oliver
      Why were the Brewers moved over to the NL?


    To avoid having interleague play every day of the season after MLB put both expansion teams in different leagues rather than the same like it was done when the leagues, then legally separate bodies, expanded in each previous round.


That, and the Brewers were smart enough to realize they could sell a lot of tickets to Cubs fans who would make the 90 minute trip for away Cubs games (in much greater numbers than White Sox fans.)

The Royals were offered the NL move first, and I believe the Diamondbacks could've come in as an AL team but requested to be in as a NL team (which required the move the other way.)

I agree with the initial post - this sounds like a trial balloon being sent out to get reaction, and not a final theory. It does seem like something's going to be done to add another playoff spot (and to "fix" AL East) - it's probably not the final idea, and there will be more of these to come. Whatever happens, it'll probably be settled at the same time as the labor agreement.

(edited by thecubsfan on 12.6.11 2324)
Peter The Hegemon
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#16 Posted on 12.6.11 2350.11
Reposted on: 12.6.18 2350.22
I know I'm a traditionalist, so this is no surprise, but my first reaction is that this is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad idea. It practically guarantees that the "haves" such as the Yankees and Red Sox will always make the playoffs, while eliminating the one advantage that the Central (especially AL Central) teams have, which is that they are in weaker divisions. It almost certainly reduces the number of meaningful games, as in any given year there are likely to be at least one or two teams who nail down playoff spots pretty early, often more, but teams who are out of the race don't get any closer. It tears away at the traditional separation of the leagues, and by eliminating divisions it fosters fewer rivalries and makes the late-season games with out-of-contention teams even more irrelevant (at least now, for my Mets there will be late season games against our traditional rivals, and the hope that we might be able to spoil something for them). Oh, and it turns interleague play from a midseason boost of interest into a routine.

Yuck.
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#17 Posted on 13.6.11 0006.12
Reposted on: 13.6.18 0007.28
I'm totally in favour of this idea. For all the talk about tradition, rivalries and history, this new method would be, above all, FAIR. Shouldn't be that simplest goal of any pro sports league, to provide each team and fanbase with at least an even playing field to start the year? Just to the naked eye, looking at the divisions and noticing that the NL Central teams have to beat five opponents to win their title while AL West teams have to beat just three others is blatantly unfair.

Every team can play their 14 other league rivals four-home and four-away (or maybe five-home and five-away) and then the rest of the games can be interleague. I'm not sure how the math works to get it to 162 or how many extra interleague games will be needed, but as long as the schedule is balanced within the leagues themselves, that's just fine by me.

Does such a format more or less guarantee a Yankees and Red Sox playoff spot every year? Yeah, but one of both of those teams make it pretty much every year anyway, so what's the difference? And, if

    Originally posted by thecubsfan
      Originally posted by PeterStork
        Originally posted by Oliver
        Why were the Brewers moved over to the NL?


      To avoid having interleague play every day of the season after MLB put both expansion teams in different leagues rather than the same like it was done when the leagues, then legally separate bodies, expanded in each previous round.


    That, and the Brewers were smart enough to realize they could sell a lot of tickets to Cubs fans who would make the 90 minute trip for away Cubs games (in much greater numbers than White Sox fans.)

    The Royals were offered the NL move first, and I believe the Diamondbacks could've come in as an AL team but requested to be in as a NL team (which required the move the other way.)

    I agree with the initial post - this sounds like a trial balloon being sent out to get reaction, and not a final theory. It does seem like something's going to be done to add another playoff spot (and to "fix" AL East) - it's probably not the final idea, and there will be more of these to come. Whatever happens, it'll probably be settled at the same time as the labor agreement.

    (edited by thecubsfan on 12.6.11 2324)


The version I heard of this was that the Blue Jays were offered a spot in the AL Central but turned it down since they wanted the extra gate from facing the Red Sox and Yankees so many times per season. Of course, you know what else sells tickets? MAKING THE PLAYOFFS, which the Jays would've certainly done a few times had they been in the Central all this time.
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#18 Posted on 13.6.11 0414.24
Reposted on: 13.6.18 0416.28
    Originally posted by thecubsfan
      Originally posted by PeterStork
        Originally posted by Oliver
        Why were the Brewers moved over to the NL?


      To avoid having interleague play every day of the season after MLB put both expansion teams in different leagues rather than the same like it was done when the leagues, then legally separate bodies, expanded in each previous round.


    That, and the Brewers were smart enough to realize they could sell a lot of tickets to Cubs fans who would make the 90 minute trip for away Cubs games (in much greater numbers than White Sox fans.)

    The Royals were offered the NL move first, and I believe the Diamondbacks could've come in as an AL team but requested to be in as a NL team (which required the move the other way.)

    I agree with the initial post - this sounds like a trial balloon being sent out to get reaction, and not a final theory. It does seem like something's going to be done to add another playoff spot (and to "fix" AL East) - it's probably not the final idea, and there will be more of these to come. Whatever happens, it'll probably be settled at the same time as the labor agreement.

    (edited by thecubsfan on 12.6.11 2324)


And the Brewers were Bud's team, he wanted to do it, and he was in charge.
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#19 Posted on 13.6.11 0633.33
Reposted on: 13.6.18 0634.24
I like the idea of doing away with divisions, but I wish they would go even further and do away with the separate leagues and have just a 30 team single table league.

Each team would play three home and three away against every other team and play 174 games total. Top six make the playoffs with top two teams receiving 1st round bye. Series record would be 1st tie-breaker, record as away team would be 2nd, runs scored as away team 3rd. A 1-game playoff would be 4th tiebreaker for the last playoff spot.

Home team's ground rules would designate DH/no-DH.

Yeah, it would never happen but I can always dream.
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#20 Posted on 13.6.11 1434.00
Reposted on: 13.6.18 1434.11
    Originally posted by Eddie Famous
      Originally posted by thecubsfan
        Originally posted by PeterStork
          Originally posted by Oliver
          Why were the Brewers moved over to the NL?


        To avoid having interleague play every day of the season after MLB put both expansion teams in different leagues rather than the same like it was done when the leagues, then legally separate bodies, expanded in each previous round.


      That, and the Brewers were smart enough to realize they could sell a lot of tickets to Cubs fans who would make the 90 minute trip for away Cubs games (in much greater numbers than White Sox fans.)

      The Royals were offered the NL move first, and I believe the Diamondbacks could've come in as an AL team but requested to be in as a NL team (which required the move the other way.)

      I agree with the initial post - this sounds like a trial balloon being sent out to get reaction, and not a final theory. It does seem like something's going to be done to add another playoff spot (and to "fix" AL East) - it's probably not the final idea, and there will be more of these to come. Whatever happens, it'll probably be settled at the same time as the labor agreement.

      (edited by thecubsfan on 12.6.11 2324)


    And the Brewers were Bud's team, he wanted to do it, and he was in charge.


Plus Milwaukee's NL history with the Braves. Bud was making the final push to get Miller Park built, and he hoped to get back older baseball fans in Milwaukee who remembered the Braves days, but never really latched onto American League ball in Brewtown.

Fresh marketing opportunity to help get his new ballpark built, really. Most of us up here thought it was a good idea, at the time...even us Gen X'ers who grew up on Brewers AL matchups.

(Oh, and the Crew just swept StL for 1st place in the NL Central. Vengeance for 1982...kinda.)
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