Happy Friday, everyone! I hope you’ve had a nice week and hope you have a nice weekend. Here’s some food for thought for your afternoon:
1. The Rangers, last I checked, owned the sixth best record in the American League, yet they have all but made the playoffs. It doesn’t seem fair to the Red Sox or White Sox–both teams will likely miss the playoffs. I wrote about this issue a long time ago at another website and I’ve been thinking about it again lately. If you don’t want to click through, here’s the gist: we go back to two divisions and the division winners/next two best teams make the playoffs, even if we have three times from one division in there. Generally, this will result in the four best teams making the playoffs. Of course, there are some snafus–the travel for the “West” divisions might be a little iffy, considering a lot of teams in the Midwest would be in those divisions. Of course, that could be allayed with a more balanced schedule. What do you think? Do the playoffs in baseball need tweaking? I think it’s worth looking at, so long as no more than four teams make the playoffs.
2. Scary as it may be, we’ve all at least thought about Life After Mo for a few seconds. Just to get this over with, there will likely never be any closer that matches what Rivera has done for as long as he has done it. To expect that would be insane. Whoever takes over the role of closer after Rivera leaves should not ever be compared to his predecessor. Ever. Who might that be? Joba? David Robertson? Someone we don’t know about yet? When the day comes for Mariano to ride off into the proverbial sunset, I hope the Yankees don’t replace him with a one inning closer, or any closer at that. When the Rivera Era is over, I want the Yankees to straight kick it old school: forget about the save rule, use the best reliever in the most crucial situations, and have a few guys in the bullpen who can go multiple innings. The last one there is where I think the Yankees could help bridge the gap between wanting to protect a prospect’s arm and giving him innings against Major Leaguers. I’m more than convinced that none of this will happen, but a guy can dream right?
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