MLB Adds Drama by Starting All 162nd Games Simultaneously

Christian Yelich, Travis d'Arnaud
The Associated Press

Major League Baseball hopes to add a bit more drama and uncertainty to the playoffs by scheduling all of the final games at the same time.

In the past with some games ending sooner than others, some teams had been able to save key players by not putting them on the field after discovering where they and their opponents stood for the playoffs. Some feel allowing these players to rest up that way is an unfair advantage that results from a quirk of the schedule.

But MLB now wants to put an end to that advantage by scheduling the final game of all 30 teams to be played at the same time.

“If a game impacts another game, they’re all occurring at the same time, so no team would be put into a lame-duck situation because their fate already had been decided by an earlier result,” Tony Petitti, MLB chief operating officer, said on Friday.

“If we do have games coming down to the wire, we want to make sure we maximize that day,” Petitti added.

Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis said he thought the idea was a good one.

“Hopefully it adds excitement and a little bit of intrigue,” Ellis said.

A similar scheme is employed in soccer’s Premier League where ten matches are all played on the same day and at the same time to force the teams to put their all into the games without saving key players aside. In soccer it is called “Survival Sunday.”

As USA Today reports, “As it currently stands, for what it’s worth, six games are technically scheduled to start at 3:05 p.m. ET and the remaining nine are set for 3:10.”

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