By: Martin Rand, III
Date: October 1, 2011

Now that the MLB season is over and the playoff positions have been set, I can honestly say I'm pleased with the results. My New York Yankees have the best record in the American League and the Boston Red Sox didn't make the cut, it doesn't get any better than that.

My new system will increase parody for Major League Baseball.

However, I'm starting to notice the same teams constantly make the playoffs every year. Unlike the NFL, divisions and the wildcard in the MLB are dominated by the same teams every year.

The MLB has discussed adding two more playoff spots to increase parody in the postseason but I don't think that's enough. What about the regular season? The MLB has to find a way to generate parody there too and make it interesting. I have the answer.

Add a South Division to both leagues. I don't mean create brand new teams for cities. To accomplish my plan, all the MLB needs to is reorganize the league.

You see, the MLB is one of the worst divided sports. The AL has 14 teams compared to the National League's 16. One division has four teams, others have five and another has six. My new system will give both leagues 15 teams; and adding a fourth division will create another division winner and an extra wildcard spot can still be added..

I know baseball purists are cringing at the thought of 12 playoff teams, but to generate interest, these are the things that have to be done.

Here's what the new AL would look like:

AL EastAL CentralAL SouthAL West
NY YankeesDetroit TigersTampa Bay RaysLA Angels
Boston Red SoxCleveland IndiansTexas RangersOakland A's
Toronto Blue JaysChicago White SoxKansas City RoyalsSeattle Mariners
Baltimore OriolesMinnesota TwinsHouston Astros

As you can see, I moved the Astros to the AL. I think with them being in the new AL South division, along with the Rangers, it will create a true in-state rivalry because both Texas teams will be competing for the division title. I moved the Rays into the AL South for geographical reasons but also because they deserve to get out of the shadow of the Yankees and Red Sox and try to own their own division.

Here's what the new NL would look like:

NL EastNL CentralNL SouthNL West
Philadelphia PhilliesMilwaukee BrewersAtlanta BravesLA Dodgers
NY MetsCincinnati RedsSt. Louis CardinalsSan Francisco Giants
Washington NationalsChicago CubsArizona DiamondbacksSan Diego Padres
Pittsburg PiratesColorado RockiesFlorida Marlins

There needed to be a lot of movement within the NL. I know people can't believe I took the Cardinals and the Cubs out of the same division but the Cubs haven't been a formidable opponent for years now; so I don't think that rivalry matters anymore. And, I'm not handing over the NL East to the Phillies. The Pirates and Nationals showed promise this season; and with less teams in the division, either team could emerge as a good team and challenge the Phillies for the top spot.

The west divisions of both leagues have only three teams because they're by far the worst divisions in terms of regular season records; and having only three teams will give the bottom feeders an opportunity to compete for the division title.

Of course, when it comes to parody in the MLB, there has to be other factors in place to help the situation (can we get a salary cap already MLB). But my plan here is a good way to start.

Will these new divisions create better parody in the MLB?
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