Big changes could be coming to Major League Baseball’s playoff format.
According to a report from Joel Sherman of the New York Post, MLB is “seriously considering” changes to the postseason that would include upping the teams in each league from five to seven, and letting the higher seeds choose their playoff opponents.
Evan Roberts and Kim Jones (filling in for Joe Benigno) discussed the possible new format on their show on WFAN on Monday. Roberts was not a fan, to say the least.
“This is horrible,” said Roberts. “This is part of why I feel more emboldened by repeating that Rob Manfred is quickly becoming the worst commissioner in sports. This is a horrible idea. It’s a horrible idea.”
The idea behind this change is, of course, financially-driven. Expanding the playoffs means more playoff games, but it also means more intrigue around the league. It means more teams are playing meaningful contests down the stretch of the season, which means less tanking and keeps more people interested in the league longer, and thus puts more cash in the pockets of MLB and its partners.
“The last thing baseball needs is more playoff teams. What Rob Manfred, I think it was Rob Manfred, what he actually did right was when they created the second wild card team, because even though they added a playoff team, they made divisions matter again. … They’re adding two more! It’s a horrendous, horrendous, horrendous idea, but lately that’s all Major League Baseball comes up with. … Rob Manfred is damaging the game of baseball.”
Jones agreed with Roberts that the changes would diminish what it takes to reach the October.
“They’re definitely watering down the regular season. … This would play to the bigger broadcast deals. They believe that their local deals are what they are.”