Should the MLB Wild Card playoff be a 3-game series? | The Tylt
Should the MLB Wild Card playoff be a 3-game series?
Imagine you spent 162 days proving you were better than most of the people at your job, and the boss one day said, "Hey. You need to outperform your other coworker today, or you will be sent home for seven months." That's what the one-game wild card format is like.
Having one game determining an organizations opportunity to play for the ultimate prize is unfair, and leaves too much to chance in determining what team is really better. Any team can win one game. If MLB wants to crown a true champion, it needs to go to a three-game series at a minimum or go back to a five-game series.
Baseball has gone to a lot of gimmicks to draw younger fans to the sport, and the one-game playoff might be the worst of them. The chance to play for a World Series should not hinge on a single game, and it's making a mockery of playoffs. The game needs to evolve, but allowing the playoffs to be diluted is not moving the game forward.
One game. One shot. The best sports moments happen when everything is on the line in one opportunity. That is what the one-game wild card format offers. There are no at-least-there's-tomorrow refrains. If you don't want to go home, you better win today. The pressure is real, and so is the exhilaration when it is overcome. The wild card format is perfect the way it is.
A couple years ago, the most exciting games in baseball were the one-and-done play-in games to get into the Wild Card series. MLB did the right thing capitalizing on this and making it an annual tradition. When people think of playoff excitement, they don't think of the predictable outcomes of multi-game serie. The most exciting playoff moments happen when there someone is in danger of going home. Sure, it happens in multi-game series', but the one-game format gets fans to the best part faster.
The one-and-done wild card round in MLB injects life into a floundering sport that needs excitement. The only criticism of the league's move was why it didn't implement it sooner.