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Selig: expanded playoffs coming, but maybe not next year

Oct 11, 2011, 8:45 AM EDT

Commissioner of Baseball Selig gestures to the crowd after throwing out the opening pitch before the start of Game 5 of the MLB National League Divisional League Series baseball playoff in Milwaukee Reuters

When Bud Selig talks to reporters he usually runs thought three or four things and then walks on. He did that last night in Milwaukee. Here are the things:

  • Labor negotiations are moving along just swell. There is no timetable or deadlines for implementing a new collective bargaining agreement to replace the one that expires in December, but no one is sweating it. It’s gonna happen.
  • Expanded playoffs are a near-certainty, but Selig is not optimistic that it could be implemented for 2012.  He was asked how to square expanded playoffs with not stretching the season into November, and he said that shouldn’t be a problem, strongly suggesting that the plan will be to do one-game play-ins between the two wild card teams in each league. My guess: everyone is still high from that game 162 crack cocaine from two weeks ago and wants to keep the feeling of scheduled win-or-go-home games alive.
  • Selig met with would-be Astros’ owner Jim Crane last week. The meeting went well he said, but there’s still no word on when or if Crane will be approved as the owner before the November 30th deadline built into Crane’s deal with current owner Drayton McLane.
  • He has no concerns about the Mets or their finances. He also sounded pretty optimistic about how the Dodgers’ litigation is going.
  • While he maintains that he will retire after the 2012 season, Selig left open the possibility that he would travel to the city of Istar during the Age of Might and ensconce himself in the court of the Kingpriest. Thereafter, he would use an artifact called the Bloodstone to retain his immortality and eventually enter The Abyss and seek to challenge Takhisis and become a god.

Hmm. Wait. That last one may have been mis-transcribed. I’d check my notes but I lost ’em. Oh well.

  1. halladaysbicep - Oct 11, 2011 at 8:50 AM

    I don’t care if you put 20 teams in the play offs. The Phillies will win it every time.
    Suck it (again) Selig. Phillies 2011 WS Champs!

    • lukeslice - Oct 11, 2011 at 8:54 AM


      • bigxrob - Oct 11, 2011 at 8:56 AM


  2. bigxrob - Oct 11, 2011 at 8:51 AM

    Regarding that last bullet point: Buster Olney has confirmed, through reliable sources, that that is definitely a going to happen

    • Matt - Oct 11, 2011 at 8:59 AM

      Who were Buster’s sources? Bupu?

  3. kluv32 - Oct 11, 2011 at 8:52 AM

    Gotta respect a good ‘Dragonlance’ reference.

    • Craig Calcaterra - Oct 11, 2011 at 8:55 AM

      All I know is that if someone could get Larry Elmore to re-do this cover with Bud’s face over Raistlin’s, I’d probably pay $1000 for it. Not sure who Crysania should be:

      • paperlions - Oct 11, 2011 at 9:19 AM

        Man, that guy has some serious live disease, he should get that checked out.

  4. Francisco (FC) - Oct 11, 2011 at 10:10 AM

    “Hi Craig! Are you ready for the next HBT Extra?”, Tiffany smiled, as always from the screen. Her picture was in one corner of his screen.

    “Ready as always Tiffany”, Craig answered. “As a matter of fact-“. Craig was interrupted by a huge growl that seemed to come from the air ducts. Tiffany’s face morphed into one of concern and confusion.

    “What was that?”, she asked.

    “Oh, don’t worry,” Craig answered. “That’s just a Troll. They come around from time to time growl and move on.”

    “Aren’t those dangerous? Shouldn’t you do something about it?”

    “No, no, my dear Tiffany. That’s precisely what they crave: Attention. This is perhaps the only type of problem that does go away if you ignore it.”

    “But what if it’s hungry? Won’t it try to eat you?”

    “No, no. Of course not. You never ever feed Trolls Tiffany. Trust me, it will be gone of its own accord soon enough.”

    Then an altogether different interruption occurred. His screen was overridden by an outside source and a specter of an image appeared on his display. A figure cowled in black, face disfigured in contortions and shadows. Partially hidden by its hood it spoke thus:

    “This. Is. Selig. Labor negotiations are on schedule. Expanded playoffs will be ready within one year, two at most. Crane hasn’t convinced the league… yet. Wilpon had better not fail us… as McCourt has failed us, we are most displeased with McCourt. My retirement is… on schedule. That. Is. All.”

    The signal terminated and Tiffany’s picture returned. “What was THAT?”

    Craig, put his bubble pipe in his mouth and somberly observed, “On the other hand, some Trolls, CAN’T be ignored…”

  5. sknut - Oct 11, 2011 at 10:32 AM

    I may have missed this but who is in line to replace Selig, any contenders that we already know about?

    • Old Gator - Oct 11, 2011 at 10:45 AM

      I’d vote for George Will. His politics appall me but he’s a great baseball person – read Men at Work or Bunts if you have any doubts – and would make one hell of a great commissioner. Let’s put his conservatism to work protecting the game from any more cockamamie “changes.” The DH was more than bad enough by itself.

      • southpaw2k - Oct 11, 2011 at 10:55 AM

        I could listen to George Will talk about baseball all day long and never get bored. I had thought about him taking over as commissioner as well, but I wasn’t sure if he had the business background and instincts to match his knowledge and understanding of the game. Still, I would completely support him as commish if he were interested in the job.

    • Richard In Big D - Oct 11, 2011 at 11:31 AM

      I think we should allow George W. Bush the honor. Has baseball experience. Has business experience. Has baseball business experience. Has experience as administrator. Time for him to put the crowning jewel in his resume’.

      Mario Cuomo would have been a similarly good choice when Bud was installed. Think about how much better shape the game would be in in Bud would have never soiled the big chair behind the big desk up there in New York.

      • siftin thru nonsense - Oct 11, 2011 at 11:41 AM

        Bush failed in baseball dude. His team wasnt good and lost money. Not a bad arm though. His father had a better arm.

      • Old Gator - Oct 11, 2011 at 11:56 AM

        His father had a better brain, too.

      • gogigantos - Oct 11, 2011 at 1:52 PM

        G.W. ,,,,, sarcasm right, tell me that is sarcasm,,,,, proved that a Harvard MBA doesn’t mean more than being a rich shit who had it all handed to him, and still managed to shit on all he touched, including our country and government and future,,, sarcasm right,,,,
        Cuomo would still be a good choice, the man played ball and has a love for what it means and could be again.
        let it rain on me now oh Gods of all that shits from above,,,,,,

      • gogigantos - Oct 11, 2011 at 1:56 PM

        the Senior Bush was, maybe still is, a shrewd man who took advantage of opportunity and rarely over played his hand,, wise and wealthy,, evil is a debate for elsewhere,,, the younger, a foolish fool, but an artist of the con who took us all for ride,,,,,, still shames baseball does the younger,,, wish Nolan would go a bit Ventura on him just once in front of the cameras,,,,

  6. rollinghighwayblues - Oct 11, 2011 at 10:40 AM

    What in the hell is Bud wearing in that picture? A Members Only jacket with an iron-on MLB logo patch?

    • Old Gator - Oct 11, 2011 at 10:46 AM

      And what the hell is wrong with his left hand? Did he step into a matter transporter with a fiddler crab?

      • scatterbrian - Oct 11, 2011 at 3:06 PM

        How about that right hand? Considering the guy hails from the land of the Fonz, he can’t even give a proper thumb’s up…

  7. Gamera the Brave - Oct 11, 2011 at 11:35 AM

    Is it just me, or does it seem that if anyone actually THREW a baseball to Bud, he would either duck into a fetal position, or would wave feebly at the ball, which would promptly smack him in the forehead? I just can’t picture him catching and throwing a ball.

    • gogigantos - Oct 11, 2011 at 1:46 PM

      have got to agree, as old as he what else could he do
      Still, have a hard time imagining him younger and being picked better than last in any street or yard game, in any sport really.

  8. siftin thru nonsense - Oct 11, 2011 at 11:39 AM

    Ok, so what we want to know is is he doing away with the stupid 5 game series???? 162 games to then have your World Series hopes all hinge on a 5 game series where anyone can slump. Ridiculous. Make them all 7. So 2013 will be the yr of the expanded playoffs?? Need more details here.

    • tophermike - Oct 11, 2011 at 11:55 AM

      sigh. sounds like another Philly or Yanks fan

      • Old Gator - Oct 11, 2011 at 12:55 PM

        Yeah, there’s lots of both floating around loose these days.

      • Francisco (FC) - Oct 11, 2011 at 1:12 PM

        Actually I would favor an 11 or 13 game series at each level (not happening!). After all in 2008 the Phillies were NOT the best team, that was the Cubs but they were swept by the surging Dodgers. Those Dodgers may have done Philly a huge favor. Maybe the Cubs prevail in a 2008 NLCS against Philly. Who knows. But I’ve long since come to the belief that in the Wild Card Era, the best team doesn’t always win the WS, it’s way too much of a crapshoot. I mean look at all those 90’s braves teams. All were great and a few of them were quite dominant! Yet only one WS to show for it.

  9. bigleagues - Oct 11, 2011 at 12:05 PM

    Whether it was intentional or not, I’d like to applaud Craig for not once – in this entire post – referring to Selig as Commissioner.

    Selig’s real title is C.E.O of MLB. The Commissioner title is a bit of a joke at the moment as no reasonable person would view one person holding the title of CEO and Commissioner as anything but a conflict of interests.

  10. jcarne9014 - Oct 11, 2011 at 2:45 PM

    Great! Soon the World Series will be played on Thanksgiving. Have fun in Minnesota, Detroit, Chicago, et al… Yeah…baseball in 25 degrees with a chance of flurries. The Summer Game my ass.

  11. scatterbrian - Oct 11, 2011 at 3:13 PM

    Obviously adding teams to the playoffs extends the postseason, but the complaint is always that they’ll be played in October/November. Why not shorten Spring Training and start the season earlier? Spring Training is already overly long, and if players need that much time to get into playing shape, a shorter ST would mean they’d just have to stay in shape. I know the weather in mid-March isn’t ideal either, but making up rainouts from March/April easily trumps postponing playoff games.

    • scatterbrian - Oct 11, 2011 at 3:22 PM

      This reminds me of another change I think might be interesting. Expanding rosters to 40 in September has it’s merits in terms of seeing your future players at the highest level, but that seems the exact wrong time to be doing this. It’s no fun seeing a team fighting for that final playoff spot while their opponent is playing AA/AAA players, or at least several non-starters.

      Instead–and helping to shorten Spring Training–baseball should have expanded rosters to start the season, with teams cutting to 25 players by May 1st. They can also allow rosters to expand to 30 (rather than 40) at the end of the season so teams can gauge playoff rosters.

  12. ronjon77 - Oct 11, 2011 at 4:07 PM

    The two teams with the best records in baseball are already golfing. Keep adding teams into the mix and don’t be surprised if you get mud. Why not include every team and just have a dodge ball finale.

  13. yournuts - Oct 11, 2011 at 6:37 PM

    Please, no. It is to diluted as is. Your ruining the game.

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