MLB Approves New Playoff Format, Adding Wild-Card Team

BOSTON (CBS) — As expected, Major League Baseball on Friday officially announced its changes to the playoff format.

The new format will add one wild-card team to the American League and one wild-card team to the National League. The two wild-card teams in each league will square off in a one-game playoff, with the winner advancing to the division series and the loser’s season ending.

The unexpected wrinkle announced was that for the 2012 season only, the lower seed in the ALDS and NLDS will have home-field advantage for the first two games, with the higher seed having home-field advantage for the remaining necessary games of the series. Previously, the higher seed played at home for the first two games of the series and the fifth game, if necessary.

This change will only be in place for the 2012 season, because the schedules have already been set. The format will go back to 2-2-1 in 2013.


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