This new playoff format sucks

Two home games to start out the series for the team with the lower record. Simply stated that is the worst rule change in recent history.  Thank goodness for Russell the muscle because otherwise this rule could have really stuck it to the Yankees this season.

By allowing the team with the better record to have more home games in a playoff series, baseball has long acknowledged that there is a significant advantage to playing at your home stadium. While Selig’s rules for 2012 don’t effect the number of home games the better team gets, it has placed them at a distinct disadvantage, especially in a short series.

The wild card teams have been sufficiently punished by forcing them to win a one game playoff, obviously a significant obstacle to overcome. There was no reason, however, to punish the two teams with the best records in their respective leagues. By giving the team with the lesser record the first two games at home, the MLB has effectively made it so if this team does what it should it will be at a 2-0 lead with three games to play. This is obviously a difficult deficit to erase, even with the next three games at home.

Luckily, the Yankees have not suffered this fate in 2012. They managed to take the first game from the O’s in dramatic fashion. Had that not happened, however, the Yankees would be down 2-0 without playing a single game in the bronx yet. In fact, there’s no guarantee that they would ever make it to an equal amount of home games for each team. To me, the team with the better record should be guaranteed to have more home games. The old format, two home, two away, one home, was much better in that respect.

All things considered, I would rather the Yankees be 1-1 with three games at home than 1-1 with two games at Camden Yards coming up. I should probably count my blessings and move on, but in this case there is a legitimate gripe. This format will only be for 2012, but it’s a good thing.

Imagine the Red Sox or Phillies fan base if their team lost the first two away and never got to an equal amount of home games as their opponent despite having the better record. The excuses would be rampant, and Bud Selig would most likely receive countless death threats. Hell, as much as I love my fellow Yankees fans, the same might happen in New York. It would be a PR nightmare.

This nonsense will only last for one season, but if you ask me that’s one season too long. If something is only worth doing for one season, then why do it at all? There’s really no justifiable reason for it.

For Selig’s sake, it is lucky that this rule didn’t end up screwing anyone over this season. It’s also lucky for us Yankees fans. Can you imagine how long certain rival fan bases would be complaining and making excuses if this rule hurt them in 2012?

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15 Responses to This new playoff format sucks

  1. @AugieM78 says:

    Really nice arguement Greg. I totally agree that we are VERY fortunate to be at 1-1 in this series.
    This is a bit more radical, but why not (at least in the first round) have ALL games played at the higher seed's home stadium? It would give that much more incentive to win your division and play out the whole regular season.

    • Greg Corcoran says:

      I guess in this scenario you would have the other two division leaders play a normal 5 game series? Sounds confusing. I don't think I'd be a proponent of having ALL games played at the higher seed's home stadium, but it'd probably be better than the system being used this season.

      • @AugieM78 says:

        Top two teams (1 and 2 seeds) in each league get full five game series at their home stadium.

        • Greg Corcoran says:

          It's a very interesting idea. I don't think I can get behind it though because I think every playoff team deserves at least the opportunity for 2 home games.

  2. Andy says:

    This years format was due to a CBA issue, it will only occur for the year. Gotta do you homework big guy.

    • Greg Corcoran says:

      Well that sounds great but what is the CBA issue you speak of? And how do you know it's only for one year? And why is it only one year? If something is only good enough to use for one year, then why use it at all? My arguments still stand about why this playoff format sucks.

    • Greg Corcoran says:

      Good find though, and I will alter the article above to suit the rules

  3. Andy says:

    Oh it definitely suck, no doubt. But it was a CBA issue regarding a schedule already in place and some sort of travel stipulations.

    "For the 2012 Postseason only, the five-game Division Series will begin with two home games for lower seeds, followed by up to three home games for higher seeds. This one-year change, which eliminates a travel day prior to a decisive Game Five of the Division Series, was necessary because the 2012 regular season schedule was established before the agreement on the new Postseason format was reached. Next year, the Division Series will return to the 2-2-1 format used in previous years."…

    • Greg Corcoran says:

      Interesting, I still don't understand why the regular season schedule has anything to do with the playoff format. They could have easily extended the playoffs by one day. That's all it would have taken.

      • Andy says:

        I believe it had something to do with the amount of travel in such limited time. Like hypothetically Baltimore having to travel to Oakland (just a scenario) for one night, win and then fly to NY the next day. That would be like 5,500 miles in 48 hours and therefore a violation of the CBA. Since the new CBA was negotiated this year (but doesn;t take effect until next), there is a new stipulation that allows for the playoff format to remain traditional.

        Another note, league owners would never agree to all 5 in one stadium, too much lost revenue for the other team. Also don't think the players would be very fond of that, and therefore wouldn't ratify it. I hope I don't seem/sound like an ass, it's not my intention.

        • Greg Corcoran says:

          I agree with you. The 5 in one stadium idea was definitely not mine.

          As for the scenario you posted, that possibility of travelling 5,500 miles in 48 hours exists with or without the home field advantage. Traveling to NY is like 200 miles extra, which in an airplane is like nothing. Thus it still doesn't really make sense to me why they had to do the schedule like this.

  4. Tom says:

    Do not agree. If you split the first 2, you have a significant advantage. If you don't split, you don't deserve it

  5. Keena says:

    The fact we had to play the first two on the road is completely ridiculous, much like the All Star league winner hosting the World Series in 4 of 7. What the hell is so hard to figure out that the team with the best record should have home field throughout. Typical Dipshit Seilig.

  6. begado says:

    I am interested to learn the way you found these details? I’ll be positively intrigued.

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