The Cubs are just one of the teams that helped thwart MLB’s expanded playoff plan | St. Louis Cardinals

Major League Baseball, in its seemingly endless frenzy of changing the rules every year, created a 12-team playoff for the first time, including three wild card teams in each league to complete three major league champions in each league. Ostensibly, this is designed to keep more teams alive, and in attendance, late in the season.

So, how is that done?

With two weeks left, 15 of the 30 major league teams are under 0.500. Thirteen of them have no chance of playing after the season. No matter what the playoff format looked like, there were still half a dozen or so teams — Oakland, Washington, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Chicago Cubs, Detroit, Kansas City — that showed little or no interest at the front office level in trying to compete. for a playoff this year.

There is a real chance that nine of the 30 teams – or 30% – will lose at least 90 games this season. This would be the second highest number in 18 years, with 10 clubs losing 90 games in 2019.

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There are no tight division races he was hoping for, other than the New York Mets and Atlanta Braves, both of which qualified for the playoffs, jostling for the Eastern Conference National League title. Teams play a three-game weekend series from now in Atlanta, and if the Mets win one of three, they have a season series tiebreaker if there is a tie for the division title.

The Los Angeles Dodgers and the Houston Astros have already earned first-division crowns, and the Cardinals and New York Yankees are on the cusp of it, leaving in doubt only the NL East and American League Central, as the Chicago White Sox tries barely above the .500 track down the Cleveland. But the White Sox entered Wednesday’s game five games behind Cleveland, and the margin is six because Cleveland clinched the season series tiebreaker on Tuesday with an 11-game win in Chicago. There are no more tie-breaking matches.

In the big picture, there are only 13 teams left with a real shot in the 12 attached berths with the Milwaukee Brewers hanging in just two games of the race for the third wild card in the National League, behind San Diego and Philadelphia. The MLS three wild cards are actually spoken of in Toronto, Tampa Bay, and Seattle. They’ve all been within a game or two of each other for a few weeks now, but Seattle has the advantage as they play all of their last 14 games against teams with losing records in Oakland (4), Kansas City (3), Texas (3) and Detroit (4) ), with the last 10 of those matches arriving at home.

This list indicates that Seattle could be seeded No. 4, or first wild card, and then stay at home to play either Toronto or Tampa Bay. Anyway, the Mariners were hired for the first time since 2001, when Seattle won a league record 116 games but lost in the MLS Championship series to the New York Yankees and Ichiro won the batting title, Rookie of the Year and Most Valuable. Every player in the same season.

In the National League, Philadelphia and San Diego are roughly tied for second. The second wild card team is sure to play second in the NL East and the third wild card will play the Cardinals here in a series of top three opening rounds.

If there was a two- or three-way tie involving wild card positioning, Milwaukee would be on the outside looking inward. San Diego and Philadelphia defeated the Brewers 4-3 in the season series. The tie between San Diego and Philadelphia will be settled by the Phillies after they beat Padres in four out of seven.

Therefore, in order for the Brewers to avoid this tiebreak, they must finish one game ahead of the Phillies or Padres.

The Brewers have the easiest schedule with their last four games this weekend in Cincinnati and their last nine home games against the Cardinals (2), Miami (4) and Arizona (3).

San Diego has played 10 of their last 13 home games, excluding a trip to Colorado this weekend. But, of those, one comes against the Cardinals on Thursday afternoon, three more against the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 100-plus team, and three against the stalker White Sox, who may be alive by the end of the week from now.

By contrast, the Phillies play their last four home games this weekend, starting Thursday night against Atlanta, before a 10-game trip to play at Wrigley Field against the Cubs (3), in Washington (4) and, most interestingly, in Houston. (3) to finish the season.

The Astros, who will have the best record in the MLS, can play it almost any way they want before they take a five-day sabbatical, without having to play in the wild cards round. Are they playing – and playing – most of their regulars in this season-ending series against Phillies knowing they won’t be playing for about a week?

MLB could have the ultimate atmosphere of the most contentious world championship if the favorite Astros and Dodgers meet in the world championship. The Dodgers, who should have the best record, will have four home games in that series, reminiscent of the 2017 World Championships won by the Astros, who later find out they’ve outdone ordinary tricks with their famous knock on dugout trash cans. Signal some tones.

Many occupations of the Astros staff and players have been overshadowed by the final discoveries. Dodgers fans and the Dodgers themselves have not forgotten losing seven games.

But, just for the record, the Astros have won two of the four games played at Dodger Stadium where they supposedly had no amazing advantage, and two of their three games at Minute Maid Park. They outperformed the Dodgers by one home run, 21-20, and by one road run, 14-13. This isn’t what anyone in Los Angeles really noticed.