Phoenix - When talk of major realignment in MLB was floated out there a few weeks ago – a case of 15 teams in the AL and NL with no Divisions – it raised more than a few eyebrows. After all , talk of adding a set of additional Wild Card teams had already been discussed.
As Commissioner Selig addressed the media today here before the All-Star Game, the reality of expanded playoffs came more into focus. The reality is, the “radical realignment” is either completely off the radar, or won’t come into being until 2013. On the latter, it’s due to Katy Feeney having the 2012 season scheduled out, and is, for the most part, going through the approval process with the clubs and players’ union.
With the need to have interleague interspersed throughout the entire season, the need for more time is needed, and more than that, there’s this: interleague has been an attendance home run for the past few seasons due to solid scheduling. Having interleague all season long will remove that novelty.
Here’s what’s gaining a lot more traction of becoming a reality for next season after the new CBA is agreed upon: the addition of two more Wild Card teams in each league. That’s not news, but what is is the idea of a one-game play-in, as opposed to a three game series is gaining more momentum.
So, while it’s possible that major realignment could still happen, it’s becoming more remote. Look for the additional Wild Card teams to be added in 2012, and the likelihood of the one-game play-in, as opposed to a three game series.
Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey, and is a contributor to Forbes SportsMoney blog.. He is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network (select his name in the dropdown provided).
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