Saturday, April 3, 2010

ARE WE TALKIN' PLAYOFFS?

I've been playing around with a Major League playoff schedule (I know - it's Opening Day - the timing of this is horribly out of place.  But Buster Olney chimed in a few days ago with a ridiculous proposal for no divisions and six teams in the playoffs from each league.  I just thought I'd take a crack myself.)

My proposal would basically keep the current format with three division winners and a wild card, but expand the opening series to best-of-seven, and severely compact the schedule:

Sunday, October 3 - Last day of regular season.

Tuesday, October 5th - Start of division series for one league.
Wednseday, October 6th - Start of division series for the other league.

The All-Star Game would determine which team start the playoffs first - on Tuesday (meaning they'd get an extra off day before the World Series) - rather than deciding home field in the World Series.  Home field would go to the team with the best record.  Yeah, I know - they play different schedules - tough.

Anyway, each of the four division series would take place on consecutive days, no matter now long the series go.  Seven straight days - no travel days.  Why not?  They do it all season like that, they can do it in the playoffs.  These series would also be scheduled 2-2-3 to reduce travel and enhance home field advantage.

The series that starts on October 5th would end by October 11th.  That league would start their League Championship Series on Wednesday, October 13th.  The other league would lag by one day, starting their LCS on Thusday, October 14th.

The two League Championship Series would each have a single day off after Game 4.  These days would fall on Sunday, October 17th and Monday, October 18th (so as not to compete with football.)  One league would conclude no later than October 20th and the other league would be a day later.

The World Series would then start on Saturday, October 23rd.  There would be off days on Monday the 25th and Friday the 29th, with Game 7 falling on Sunday October 31st.  No November baseball.

Here's how it looks laid out in a grid assuming the AL starts:

Sun 3-Oct End Reg Season
Mon 4-Oct

Tue 5-Oct ALDS
Wed 6-Oct ALDS NLDS
Thu 7-Oct ALDS NLDS
Fri 8-Oct ALDS NLDS
Sat 9-Oct ALDS NLDS
Sun 10-Oct ALDS NLDS
Mon 11-Oct ALDS NLDS
Tue 12-Oct
NLDS
Wed 13-Oct ALCS
Thu 14-Oct ALCS NLCS
Fri 15-Oct ALCS NLCS
Sat 16-Oct ALCS NLCS
Sun 17-Oct
NLCS
Mon 18-Oct ALCS
Tue 19-Oct ALCS NLCS
Wed 20-Oct ALCS NLCS
Thu 21-Oct
NLCS
Fri 22-Oct

Sat 23-Oct WS
Sun 24-Oct WS
Mon 25-Oct

Tue 26-Oct WS
Wed 27-Oct WS
Thu 28-Oct WS
Fri 29-Oct

Sat 30-Oct WS
Sun 31-Oct WS




Under this schedule, most likely no starting pitcher would pitch more than twice in a series.

If you had rain outs, you would obviously push everything back a day, but then eliminate the next scheduled off day to make up the time.

It could be done.

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