The MLB is wrapping up their first ever 60-game season this week and baseball fans are looking forward to the playoffs. Teams across the league have been punching their tickets to continue to play in October.
The playoffs are scheduled to begin September 29th with the National League and American League Wild Card Series.
The Tampa Bay Rays have taken the American League East division and, to the surprise of many, hold the best record in the American League with a 37-20 record.
This was a huge surprise considering the New York Yankees were World Series favorites prior to the start of the season because of their star-studded roster.
The Yankees still managed to clinch a playoff berth, along with the American League West division winner Oakland Athletics, Minnesota Twins, Chicago White Sox’s and the Cleveland Indians.
The Los Angeles Dodgers have clinched the NL West division as well as the number 1 overall seed in the National League with the best record in baseball at 40-17.
The Dodgers are currently joined by the NL East division winner Atlanta Braves, Chicago Cubs and the San Diego Padres as teams who have clinched a playoff birth.
The MLB has expanded their playoffs this year to include 8 teams from each league as opposed to the usual 5 teams from each league.
This change is only in effect for 2020. For 2021 and beyond, it will see the MLB return to the 5 teams from each league format.
Due to the pandemic, the MLB wants to follow in the footsteps similar to the NBA and create a semi-bubble environment for the postseason. The first round of the MLB playoffs, also known as the Wild Card, will be played in the higher seeds home stadium and will be a best-of-3 game series.
The following round, the National League Divisional Series, will no longer be played at the higher seeds home stadium. Instead, games will be played in American League ballparks, Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas and Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas.
Meanwhile, the opposite side of the bracket will see the American League Division Series be played in National League Ballparks with Petco Park in San Diego, California and Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California hosting.
All League Division Series matchups will be a best-of-5 games series.
In the next round of the postseason, the American League Championship Series will feature a best-of-7 games series that will be played at Petco Park in San Diego, California.
While the National League Championship Series will also be a best-of-7 game series, it will be played at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas.
Globe Life Field will also play host to this year’s World Series.
According to Draftkings Sportsbook, the Dodgers are +350 favorites to win the World Series this year, followed by the Yankees at +600 and the Rays at +650.
In a season full of firsts, even more, history is yet to be made in the MLB.