16 divisions of 2


Top seed from each division goes straight to the LCS


Thinking outside the box. I like it.


8 wild cards


If you ain't first, your last.


And keep the 72 divisional games a year obviously or what's the point.


Mariners still miss the playoffs with 90 wins somehow.


Four divisions of eight teams. The postseason structure works out better that way - all you gotta do is give the division winners byes in a 12-team playoff.


I agree with this, minus the concern about baseball being such a rhythm game, and there being a disadvantage to teams with byes. Which is not a small concern.


If it's a short series for the wild cards it's less of an issue.


I would say the first round is a best of 3 so the team with a bye only has a few days off


6 divisions of 5 and then a 2-team division with the Dodgers and Astros who would exclusively play each other all season.


I would be so down for that


Manfred Trophy to the season series winner!


Manfred just a piece of metal




4 divisions of 8. Or even 2 divisions of 16. The more balanced the schedule is, the better. Some concessions to reduce travel is fine, and perhaps a few extra rivalry games, but should be kept to a minimum.


4 divisions of 8 as long as there's no wild cards and no LDS


2 divisions of 16 each, no LDS, no LCS, straight to WS


That would be awesome. A huge pennant chase with the highest stakes in 50 years would be must-watch TV every single day. Can you imagine how hype it was the years that the pennant came down to a tiebreaker? That had to have been awesome to experience.


That would be terrible. Plenty of teams would be out of the running by the all star break


I mean it worked fine from 1871 through 1969 but that was probably just a one time fluke I guess


Either that or there were half as many teams. Who knows?


It doesn't actually matter though. Once you get to 7th or 8th place there's not really a whole lot of difference between that and 15th place in terms of how likely you are to win a pennant. At that point you're just hoping to have a Miracle Braves or Impossible Dream season. Of course, the leagues could also just be competitive enough that last place is not too far from 1st even in September, but that's not likely.


A lot has changed in the last 50 years


When each day only accounts for 0.6% of the full season, it most certainly isn’t must watch TV.


Sorry to hear you hate baseball, America, and yourself


I don’t think pointing out baseball has a massive urgency problem that has made the sport both niche and parochial means I hate America.


Scares me to think of how many divisional games you'd play with just 3 other divisional foes. And the weird fuckery of a division being bad, and an 82-83 win team making the playoffs because they won a weak division. 4, 8 team divisions sounds so much better. So tired of playing 19 games versus 4 teams, and only 6/7 versus all the other teams. Just a trash system.


>Scares me to think of how many divisional games you'd play with just 3 other divisional foes. And the weird fuckery of a division being bad, and an 82-83 win team making the playoffs because they won a weak division. So basically what would have happened with the AL west back in 94 if not for the strike?


With another expansion of the playoffs, 82-83 wins will be all it tales anyway.


8 Teams in 4 Divisions. 14-15 games against each team in your division. 6 games against the other teams in your league 3 series of inter-league play (3 games a piece. All of these games will take place during the same 9 game period for every team.) 4 games against your inter-league rival.


There will never be no divisions in baseball. Baseball's long-rooted history of rivalries is a cash cow. Red Sox v. Yankees play 10 times a year; imagine now they play only like 4. Sorry for the no division comments, business wise it’s not smart.


It's even crazier than that with the modern unbalanced schedules - you play every other team in your division 19 times in a season. 76 out of 162 games are against division rivals. Kind of nuts.


I don't see how playing 76 of 162 games in division makes it unbalanced. The whole point is the best team in each division makes the playoffs, so you want those teams to have large head to head records against each other. Not to mention part of the whole point of divisions is to create rivalries. I'd be pretty disappointed if the Nats suddenly only played 1-2 series against the Braves/Phillies every year. If some teams end up getting an easier schedule because of an easier division, it really isn't an advantage. If that team was the best team in the division, they were making the playoffs anyway. If anything having an easier schedule hurts you come playoff time.


Unbalanced doesn't necessarily mean unfair, it just means it isn't balanced. In this case, it's the common term used to describe the heavy weight towards divisional games. If you do a quick search for "mlb unbalanced schedule", you'll turn up plenty of articles about it. The unbalanced schedule was introduced in the early 2000s. Up until that point, you'd play a roughly equal number of games against all teams in your league. For example, there were 14 teams in the AL, so you'd play every other team 12 or 13 times a year. After the change, you'd instead play everyone in your division 19 times and the rest of the league 6 or 7 times, with some interleague games sprinkled in. I personally preferred the previous setup because there was just more variation in who you'd play. Rivalries like the Yanks / Sox are fun and all, but I don't feel I get anything extra out of seeing them play 19 times instead of 13. If anything, it waters things down and makes each game feel less important. I'd rather see two extra series against a team like the A's. I also don't love how the unbalanced schedule makes it far more difficult for some teams to make the playoffs. Take the Orioles for example - it's much harder for them to win a wild card spot than it is for a team like the A's simply because they have to play so many extra games against the Yanks, Sox, and Rays. It's not my idea of parity. It is what it is, but I liked the old system better. I think weighting almost 50% of the schedule to divisional games is just too much.


Think we're both just kinda being pedantic about the word balance now. Personally I think it makes it much more interesting to face your rivals more and does nothing to water down the impact or appeal of those games.


Hah, fair enough :). I think reasonable people can disagree on what's ideal; it definitely comes down to preference. The real callout was just the term "unbalanced schedule" has a specific meaning in this context - that's just the common terminology for it. Agreed that whether or not that's an accurate descriptor is fair game.


It is TOO MUCH of a good thing, it dilutes how important rivalry games are if you are playing them 19 times a season.


Hard disagree. Just look back at LA SF this year. Every single regular season game felt like a playoff game. Sure if one team isn’t competitive it sucks. But it would have sucked regardless of how many games were played.


Fair point, but how were those 19 games vs the D'backs?


More terrifying than you might think. Some of them were pretty good games. And their weakness was made up for by playing the Dodgers that many times.


Well personally I would be willing to sacrifice a few M's Rangers games per year for a few more games vs the Dodgers and Giants.


I'd like four divisions only if we get rid of leagues. Don't want Central time-zone teams forced to play half their schedule on the west coast, unless they at least compromise on start times. There are enough West and Mountain time-zone teams to have one Western division, and the other three divisions can divvy up the East and Central time-zones. Signed: a Central time-zone fan who always sees their team shunted into some Western division when people mock this up, with sympathy to the Texans who already put up with this.


Agreed. Something along the lines of what the NHL has - west, central, northeast, and southeast divisions. Here’s how it could work (expansion teams in Nashville and Montréal): West: Arizona, Colorado, LAA, LAD, Oakland, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle Central: CHC, CHW, Houston, KC, Milwaukee, Minnesota, STL, Texas Southeast: Atlanta, Baltimore, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Miami, Nashville, TB, Washington Northeast: Boston, Detroit, Montréal, NYM, NYY, Philly, Pittsburgh, Toronto Or maybe you flip the Texas teams to the Southeast and add the Ohio teams to the central


We appreciate the sympathy! It's bad now but not quite as bad as when it was a four team division. And yes, there'll no reason to keep the AL and NL any more after the DH is gone.


> There are enough West and Mountain time-zone teams to have one Western division, and the other three divisions can divvy up the East and Central times. Add two teams in the East and we can have a PDT/MDT/MST division, a CDT division, and two EDT divisions. I would hate losing the history of AL/NL, but it's there.


0 divisions, 32 teams balanced schedule top 12 make playoffs Worst team forced to sell better hot dogs and cheaper beer to compensate for bad fan experience


I can’t argue with that




Weird. Not sure what happened


Your flair class ends in “wagon”, if I remember correctly. When I ran the script to remove the bandwagon flairs, yours likely got removed as well.


How about worst team gets relegated to AAA.


Looking forward to the nickle beers next year


Hey hey hey fuck you there buddy. If this happens I’m sure as hell supporting a little service time manipulation


>Worst team forced to sell better hot dogs and cheaper beer to compensate for bad fan experience Fans, we need to get our shit together! Where's our organization and where's our representative at these bargaining meetings???


Oh, that's easy. Surely the Commissioner will do what's best for the game and the fans!


4 divisions of 8. But I think to effectively pull that off you also need to get rid of the AL and NL.


There are potentially large reductions in travel costs and greenhouse emissions if MLB were to reorganize into four regional divisions. In-game benefits include better rested players and a less chaotic playoff format. We'd lose the long-standing tradition of NL/AL and seasonal awards would need adjustment. There's a lot to lose, but a lot more to gain.


That is a fascinating idea. If both teams went in the south/southeast (e.g. Nashville and New Orleans) you could do something like this: West | Midwest | Northeast | South :--|:--|:--|:-- Mariners | Twins | Blue Jays | Reds Giants | Brewers | Red Sox | Marlins Athletics | Cubs | Yankees | Rays Dodgers | Sox | Mets | Rangers Angels | Cardinals | Phillies | Astros Padres | Royals | Nationals | Braves D-Backs | Tigers | Pirates | Nashville Rockies | Guardians | Orioles | New Orleans Things might not be perfectly balanced at first, but I don't hate these groupings.


Could just go American League East and American League West. Then National League North(Midwest is all north really sans Cards) and National League South or something.


i really dont see how Cincinnati can be considered south, but i also dont see any other viable options


Sometimes it's odd man out for regional divisions. It's more apparent in the NFL where you have Dallas in the East and Indiannapolis in the south.


Or Atlanta in the NL West


The Chiefs (AFC West) are east of the Cowboys (NFC East), and up until a few years ago the Rams (NFC West) were too


Reds -> midwest Cleveland -> northeast Nats-> south Would make more sense to me.


While geographically yes this makes more sense. It’s regionally wrong. Cincinnati is more or less Kentucky. Cleveland is the rust belt not the Northeast DC is the southern tip of the Northeast corridor, not the south.


Someone else in the comments wanted Reds and Braves in the same league, and I was like "Eh, Cincinnati is on the border of Kentucky so why not ¯\\\_(ツ)\_/¯" I do agree tho, it does feel a little weird to me.


It's even less weird when you realize that the closest MLB stadium to Trust park is GABP.


Indianapolis plays in the AFC South in the NFL, and is further north than the Bengals who play in the AFC North


I actually really like this. The only screw up would be the owners insisting on 8 teams making the playoffs. If it was straight to Championship Series/World Series that would be amazing. Maybe make them best of 9 to compensate *and* reward deeper teams.


Are you crazy? The owners are trying to expand the playoffs past *ten* teams. There's no way they'd be satisfied with going down to 4. If they have to suffer the possibility of their team finishing in 8th place like in the NHL, they would insist on the same format: top three teams in each division plus two Wild Cards for each of the Eastern and Western Conferences.


How about this? 12 teams (3 per division). No wild cards. 2 vs 3, winner plays 1.


I'd think they would try to get at least one expansion in the west. Either Portland, which seems very unlikely, or Oakland stays in Oakland and expand to Las Vegas. Then one in Montreal/Memphis.


Charolette before NOLA.


Agreed. I pulled NOLA out of my ass, but I would much prefer to see a team in North Carolina. Durham would be cool too -- just bring the Bulls into the MLB.


Wow, I just realized Cleveland changed their mascot to the Guardians. I've been so out of the loop since the lockout, I saw your list and it took me a few minutes to figure what the hell was going on.


The Pirates and Orioles are fucked!


I remember doing the thought experiment of 4 divisions before and thinking it'd be a damn shame and a disservice to the sport to break up the NL Central. Amir Garrett needs ALL his enemies.


4 divisions of 8


8 divisions of 4 teams. The division winners meet in the playoffs. That's it. No more wild card BS. Bring more meaning back to the regular season.


The one that gets us out of the same division as Colorado, that’s the one I want.


16 divisions of 2 teams


If ya ain't first, you're last!


Fuck it. Expand to 40 teams, expand playoffs to all 40 teams plus the top 4 AAA teams, DH in both leagues for pitchers and the worst hitting position player, all hits against the shift are automatic outs, and home runs are worth triple the runs


Personally, I think they should expand to 36 and have 6 divisions of 6. IMHO, that's ultimately the solution to baseball's problems. They simply need more major league jobs for both younger players and vets. And with the population what, 325 million, plus drawing from Latin American, Canada, and Japan and Korea there is no real lack of talent. Sure, the number of superstars is fixed, but there are a lot of journeyman players who are frozen out


I just did this in OOTP. 8 divisions of 4. I’m in my 3rd year of no wildcard and debating going to 6 in the playoffs from each league.


No divisions. Divisions suck. Balance the schedule and let the teams in each league battle for however many playoff spots are available


That’s a bit easier to say when over half the teams are in the northeast and Midwest but I definitely don’t think adding even more cross country flights is a good idea for the Ms and to a lesser degree, other west coast teams; we already travel the most in the league as it stands. Long flights and changing time zones have negative effects on the body and athletic performance. And on a more personal note, but I like that most games start about the same time within your division. It’s always a bit annoying when the Ms have east coast games at 4pm or 10 am PST. I imagine it’s the same for east coast teams visiting the west and having to stay up late.


Regrettably it'd probably be 18 or 20 playoff sports the owners get their way


4 divisions, 2 wild cards. Top two teams get byes. 1st round is a best of 3 at division winners stadium.


8 divisions of 4


Preferably 8 divisions of 4. But what I really want is for Atlanta and Cincinnati to be in the same division. So whichever makes that happen.


9 divisions, 8 what you would expect but one just the Pirates. Playoffs here we come!


4 divisions of 8, but make sure you're keeping the leagues (AL and NL) intact


Being baseball, 4 of 5 and 2 6 team divisions. The 2 - 6 team divisions both in the national league. To accomplish this move 2 teams with long histories and natural rivals over to the Senior Circuit and force 2 new teams with terrible or non existent stadiums to make a rival. Also load up the schedule to play division teams only at the beginning of the season and the last week. Can you say Honolulu?


16 divisions with two teams Then I just gotta watch playoffs


I'd rather have promotion and relegation. The bottom six from each league get relegated into a 12-team, two-division structure. The remaining teams play 18 against each league opponent as from 1962 to 1968. The relegated teams play a schedule similar to each league from 1969 to 1976. I've done relegation before, having the bottom five teams from each league playing each other. It creates three ten-team leagues. Easy enough.


2 leagues of 16 teams, east and west. Top 3 teams in each league make it to the playoffs automatic, 4 and 5 have a one game play in (current wild-card game). No divisions.


I actually do like the idea of an NBA style format in terms of playoff eligibility, but it would also mean that rich rivalries will take a blow.


Just one ladder for each league.


6 divisions of 5.3 teams


8 divisions, 4 teams per.


Keep them the same. But the team in each leauge with the worst record has to sit out the next season. The two mew teams take their place. Cycle resets. Fixed tanking


There are to many teams as it is. It dilutes the talent pool.


I'd prefer 8 of 4, no wild cards.