I really like the realignment idea assuming we're going to a universal DH. I made this a comment elsewhere but I also thought I'd also post this as a separate blog. Here's my proposal for realignment. I know it's fantasy but hey, it's the dog days of summer so why not?
5 divisions, not 6. 12 teams in the playoffs, The top 2 in each division plus two remaining teams teams with best records make the playoffs so there is a reward for being a little better than average. Four best records get byes while the other 8 play 3 games series down to 4. Lots of playoff games; TV loves it. The remaining 8 teams (4 with byes plus 4 first round winners) re-seed by record, not location. During the regular season you play all of the teams in three of the other four divisions 6 times each, 3 at home, 3 away. That's 108 games (6 times 18 - 6 teams in each division). You play the remaining games in your division. You play 11 games each year against your 5 division opponents, except one only 10 times, for 54 games, total 162. Alternatively, add a game and rotate the unbalanced 81 home/82 away schedules in each division. You could rotate through the division the one team that you "only" play 10 times and you'll have to rotate each year which team gets the extra home game, 2 you get the extra, 2 your opponent, to balance the schedule.
Division are by location to create/enhance rivalries:
West Coast Division - San Diego, LA Angels, LA Dodgers, San Francisco, Oakland/Vegas, Seattle
Southwest/Rocky Mountain Division - Houston, Texas (Dallas), Arizona, Kansas City, St. Louis, Colorado (Denver)
Midwest Division - Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Minnesota, Milwaukee, Detroit, Pittsburg or Toronto (bummer that Twins are in a different time zone, but couldn't figure out a way to fix that)
Southeast Division - Miami, Tampa Bay, Atlanta, Washington, Cincinnati, Cleveland or Baltimore (depends on whether you want the Ohio or Beltway rivalry)
Northeast Division - Boston, NY Yankees, NY Mets, Philadelphia, Pittsburg or Toronto, Cleveland or Baltimore
You rotate through the other divisions in the regular season. One year, the Twins play the Northeast, Southeast and Southwest, next year the Southeast, Southwest, West Coast, next year the Southwest, West Coast, Northeast, etc. That away the existing rivalries that are being broken up still play 6 games against each other 3 out of every 4 years like the Cubs and Cardinals. Those will fade over time; the Cubs new hated rival will be the White Sox, the Cards, the Royals.
What do you guys think?