Despite being dethroned as a supergiant sport by football, baseball remains entrenched in the heart of many Americans. From backyards to state-of-the-art stadia, baseball needs no introduction to the average fan. At the apex is the Major League Baseball (MLB). MLB is everything to many aspiring baseball professionals and fanatics alike. Here’s an in-depth look at MLB.
The Structure of MLB
MLB comprises of two competitive leagues, the American and the National Leagues. Each league is split into three divisions consisting of 15 teams. An excruciating 162 games per team make a complete season. These games are played within each league, although interleague matches also occur frequently. Twenty-five players make up one team that is led by an on-field manager.
Playoffs are the most anticipated games in baseball. All the drama happens at the playoffs. Over the years, league leaders have slumped against wild cards. The teams with best records across the six divisions qualify for the playoffs at the end of every season.
A wild card from each league also qualifies for the playoffs. They are usually the two teams that didn’t win their respective division but have the best records. The winner is the team that emerges victorious in four of the seven-game series. There is talk of increasing the playoffs teams to 14 once the current format agreement expires in 2021.
Rivalries in MLB
Throughout its existence, the MLB has been home to epic rivalries. There have been eternal duels as well as modern-found foes. But perhaps, nothing comes close to the clash between the Yankees and the Mets. From fans to on-field players, the Battle of New York doesn’t disappoint.
Other notable baseball rivalries include the New York Yankees vs. the Boston Red Sox, LA Dodgers vs. the San Francisco Giants, St Louis Cardinals vs. the Chicago Cubs, and the Philadelphia Phillies vs. New York Mets.