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MLB might expand 2020 playoffs to 16 teams

FILE PHOTO: Jul 22, 2020; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Fake fans in seats during the second inning between the Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

With the season set to open in less than 24 hours, Major League Baseball and the players union reportedly were talking about how the year will conclude.

The possibility of expanding this year’s playoffs from 10 teams to 16 teams was under discussion, according to multiple media reports.

The current 10-team postseason was implemented in 2012, when a second wild card was added in both leagues.

Additional playoff games this year could help the owners and players recoup some of the losses incurred due to the regular season being reduced from 162 to 60 games because of the coronavirus pandemic. In addition, teams will play some if not all of their games behind closed doors, cutting off the game-day income derived from tickets, parking, concessions and merchandise sales.

When the clubs and the Major League Baseball Players Association engaged in contentious talks over the length of the delayed season, MLB had proposed a 16-team playoff field for this year. However, that item was eliminated when commissioner Rob Manfred ultimately imposed a 60-game slate for each team.

Baseball is set to start Thursday with two games, the New York Yankees visiting the defending World Series champion Washington Nationals, and the San Francisco Giants visiting the Los Angeles Dodgers in a renewal of the West Coast’s top rivalry.

--Field Level Media

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