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Spring Training Game Thread: Twins @ Rays 2/26/202020ad

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 03:53 PM
It was the best of times, it was the blurst of times. And TD had yet to jinx the Twins... Oh right. I need to find a line up...
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Astros Consequences Thread

Other Baseball Today, 03:50 PM
It’s time to transition away from the reports of everything they did. We all had a feeling that players were going to take matters into...
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Severino shut down with forearm soreness

Other Baseball Today, 03:50 PM
According to mlb.com, Severino is being shut down and his opening day status is in question. That means NY may begin the season without b...
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2019/2020 Twins Minor League Signings

Twins Minor League Talk Today, 03:49 PM
This is a forum to update Twins minor league signings (and can be where we post Twins minor league free agents that signed elsewhere)....
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What Makes a Shortstop a Great Defender?

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 02:56 PM
When Statcast came out with infield defensive ratingsat the end of 2019, Jorge Polanco appeared at the bottom of the SS list. Using actua...
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Recent Blogs


Opinion: Manfred Proposes a Playoff Restructure

On February 10th, Joel Sherman of the New York Post released an exclusive article laying out Rob Manfred’s proposal for a new playoff structure. The news sure had the Twitterverse, including current and former players, like Trevor Bauer and Trevor Plouffe, stirring, ready to share their reaction.
Image courtesy of © Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
This piece will summarize the proposal and then include some subjective commentary on how it could impact baseball. After reading, I look forward to hearing what you think and what ideas, if any, you have on a possible restructure.

So let's start with a quick bullet point summary of the proposal:
  • Increase playoff teams from five to seven in each league, which introduces two additional Wild Card teams.
  • The team with the best record in each league will receive a bye to the Division Series.
  • The Wild Card Series would be a three-game series where all games take place at the home of the teams with the best record.
  • The division winner with the second-best record would choose who they play of the three lower Wild Card teams.
  • The division winner with the third-best record would choose who they play of the two remaining lower Wild Card teams.
  • The last two Wild Card teams remaining will play each other.
  • There will no longer be Game 163s... the tiebreaker at the end of the regular season will be their head-to-head record.
  • There will be a “selection show” on the last day of the regular season where teams will pick in a reality TV-esque show.
I believe that the playoffs should be as exclusive as reasonably possible. I still don’t like the fact that the playoffs were expanded in 2012, and believe that the team that loses the Wild Card play-in game should not be credited with a playoff appearance. That’s right, in my eyes, the Twins did NOT make the playoffs in 2017... sorry, not sorry.

Needless to say, I don’t like expanding the playoffs even more as it takes away some of the meaning of making a playoff appearance. Furthermore, by expanding the playoffs I think you encourage teams to remain complacent. If you decide to truly “tank” you’re not going to be vying for one of the last Wild Card spots even with the expansion. On the other hand, if you are an average to slightly above average team expected to win ~85 games, you now have the opportunity to appease your fan base by “making the playoffs” without feeling the pressure to add an expensive or high-impact piece. Oh, and owners get the added financial benefit of playing at least two extra games without the payroll commitment.

All that said, I love the rest of the proposal. You don’t need to expand the playoffs to allow the top division winner to choose their opponent. Strategically, a team might decide to play the best team available right away while they know the health of their players or if they feel they match up better against the team.

That’s one aspect of the proposal I would change: Why does the division winner have to choose from one of the Wild Card winners? It wouldn’t be completely crazy to see one of the Wild Card teams actually have a better record than the third-best division winner. While you’re at it, give me an hour-long selection show special for some added drama.

I wouldn’t hate to see the current one-game playoff change to the proposed best-of-three series where the Wild Card team with the better record hosts all three games. Anything fluky can happen in one game, so that’s not a great measure of who is truly the better team. And if the losing team puts up a respectable fight in the series, I’d even consider crediting them with a playoff appearance.

What do you think of the proposal? Does it deter tanking? Would you make any changes to the current structure?

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54 Comments

 

Have you seen the TV ratings of sitcoms from the late 70's compared to today?

 

Laverne & Shirley 1978-79: 30.5

 

The Big Bang Theory 2018-19: 10.6

 

Compare that to World Series Game 1 ratings:

 

1979: 28.5

2019: 8.1

 

Why, it's almost as if the whole media landscape has changed!

OMG, it's almost like people watch more stuff on the internet and social media than TV!

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jorgenswest
Feb 15 2020 02:08 PM
There is nothing better than a baseball game. I am in the bleachers watching a high school scrimmage right now.

If it is more meaningful games at the end of the season I am in. There is still plenty to play for in the regular season because winning the division means you play all three in your park.
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Nine of twelve
Feb 15 2020 07:58 PM

This idea is not good. In the NHL and the NBA the regular season has little meaning to a good team. I think the baseball postseason as currently configured cannot be improved upon. Requiring the two wild card teams to play one game to determine who plays the team with the best regular-season record in the league puts a high premium on regular season performance. Leave it alone.

 

80 90 or 100 million dollar payrolls would not come close to bankrupting any teams. Enough revenue gets shared between teams to make this entirely feasible.

Well the poster originally said 100 million dollar floor, so no not 80 or 90.