With the 2023 regular season winding down, the playoffs are approaching fast. These last few games can become exciting if you’re a baseball fan. Whether you’re a diehard fan or just learning more about the league, here is a breakdown of everything you need to know about the MLB playoffs.
How many teams will make it?
Since 2022, MLB has implemented a new bracket-style playoff where 12 teams can compete in the playoffs. Furthermore, six teams in the American League and six in the National League will be eligible for the playoffs. Three teams in each league will be the division winners, with the remaining three being wild card teams. The two teams with the best record who have won their division receive a first-round bye and will automatically advance to the Division Series. The third division winner will host the Wild Card Series against the third Wild Card team (6th seed).
Each AL and NL Wild Card series is a best-of-three set. The No. 1 seed, the team with the best record in each league, hosts the winner of the 4 vs. 5 matchup. Meanwhile, the No. 2 seed faces the winner of the No. 3 vs. No. 6 in the Divisional Round.
How many rounds are in MLB Playoffs?
There are four rounds in the MLB Playoffs:
Wild Card Round
League Championship Round
How many games will be played?
The Wild Card Round is a best of three series, the Division Round is a best of 5 series, with the NLCS/ALCS and World Series being a best of 7 series.
As of September 6, these are the current postseason standings:
Baltimore Orioles – 87-51 – AL East
Houston Astros – 79-61 – AL West
Minnesota Twins – 73-66 – AL Central
Tampa Bay Rays – 84-55 – (First Wild Card)
Seattle Mariners – 77-61 – (Second Wild Card)
Toronto Blue Jays – 76-62 – (Third Wild Card)
Atlanta Braves – 90-47 – NL East
Los Angeles Dodgers – 84-53 – NL West
Milwaukee Brewers – 77-61 – NL Central
Philadelphia Phillies – 76-62 – (First Wild Card)
Chicago Cubs – 75-64 (Second Wild Card)
Cincinnati Reds – 73-68 (Third Wild Card)
Teams in the Playoff Hunt?
There are several teams in the playoff race. The Texas Rangers are the closest in the American League, standing just half a game behind the third Wild Card spot. Things are much tighter in the National League, with the Marlins, Diamondbacks, and Giants all within at least two games of the third NL Wild Card spot.