This idiocy of moving the Astros to the American League West in lieu of radical, legitimate and common sense realignment is indicative of the utter cluelessness and fear that permeates the way Major League Baseball is run.
I’m not getting into a long-winded critique of the decision to have 15 teams in each league and the necessity of an interleague game every day during the season.
These are side stories that mean nothing.
The point is this: MLB had an opportunity to realign properly, make the game better on and off the field and eliminate the unfairness of teams that should be in the playoffs missing the playoffs because of an accident of geography and divisional placement and they let it pass by. Again.
I wrote a drastic realignment plan in June when the discussion of adding Wild Card teams and moving the Astros and other plans became public.
The difference between theirs and mine is that mine makes sense and their doesn’t.
Here’s what I wrote then in full (adjusted for my clear lack of mapping—sue me, I wasn’t specific in naming the Southwest). Below are the divisions and the playoff/schedule format.
Northeast: Yankees, Mets, Red Sox, Phillies, Blue Jays
Atlantic: Nationals, Orioles, Braves, Marlins, Rays
Central: Indians, Reds, Pirates, Twins, Tigers
Mid-West: White Sox, Cubs, Cardinals, Royals, Brewers
California West: Dodgers, Angels, Padres, Giants, Athletics
South-West: Rangers, Astros, Diamondbacks, Mariners, Rockies
The number of games must be cut to 154 with an unbalanced schedule.
15-18 games will be against division rivals and the games against the rest of the league will number somewhere between 8-10 and be determined randomly by computer.
Every division winner makes the playoffs and there are 4 Wild Card teams. The 4 Wild Card teams will play one another in a best 2 of 3 format so the division champions aren’t sitting around for a week waiting for an opponent.
Once two teams are eliminated, the eight remaining clubs are seeded from 1 through 8 with a 1 vs 8; 2 vs 7; 3 vs 6; 4 vs 5 matchup scheme in a 3 of 5 format.
After that, the teams are reseeded again for the championship series with a best 4 of 7. The two remaining teams will play in the World Series.
But MLB came up with something else.
They’re moving the Astros to the American League.
I suppose that’s a good idea too.
No I don’t.