Atlanta Braves Morning Chop: 5 Ways MLB Could Shake Things Up for Fans

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Aug 5, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Williams Perez (61) buries his face in a towel after being removed from a game against the San Francisco Giants in the seventh inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

3. Shortened Schedule

Facts related to the manner in which baseball currently schedules its season:

  • 162 games
  • If divided strictly by sets of 3-game stints, that’s 54 series-es.
  • Inter-league play schedules choose a single division and schedule 3 games vs. each team in that division (sometimes 4).
  • There’s also a ‘rivalry’ series that is added each year (example:  The Atlanta Braves always have the Boston Red Sox on their schedule)
  • Division foes are played 18-19 times per year; other teams in the league are scheduled for 6-7 games.  This is the “unbalanced schedule” scheme.

Many do not like inter-league play on principle; the fans apparently do like it, as attendance routinely jumps during inter-league play.  Thus, my proposal includes IL games, but will reduce their impact.


With expansion, there would be 3 divisional rivals, 12 additional league rivals.  I propose a single opposite-league division be selected for inter-league play per year (4 opponents), and the elimination of the “rivalry” series.

  • Divisional Play:  3 teams, 6 series’ each (18 games per team; 9 home, 9 away.  54 games total)
  • League Play:  12 teams, 2 series’ each (6 games per team; 3 home/3 away.  72 games total)
  • Inter-league Play:  4 teams, 2 series each (6 games per team; home-and-home; 24 games total)

That adds up to 150 games.  We’ll still need 12 more to maintain the current 162 game slate.

Solution:  add a second opposite-league division for those 12 games.  One series each means that your can’t do a home-and-home set, but then you would come back to that division the next season and reciprocate the schedule.


  • Atlanta would play the Marlins, Rays, and Reds 18 times each.
  • Atlanta would play the rest of the National League 6 times each.
  • Atlanta would play the entire AL-East for 6 games each.
  • Atlanta would play the entire AL-West for 3 games each.
  • The next year, the Braves would get the entire AL-Central for 6 games each, plus the AL-West again (3 games each) to ‘complete’ those home-and-home sets.


Baseball is going too long – 183 days (and so is this post… oops) The 2015 season began on April 5th and ended on October 4th.  The World Series will likely end in November.  There are ways to combat this.

  • Start the season no later than the last full week of March
  • Every team must play a double-header once a month… on a Saturday or Sunday.  Day-night split, combined… whatever.
  • Over the April-September time frame, that would cut 6 days – a week – from the schedule.

If this had been done for 2015, then Opening Day would have been on Monday, March 24th (ignoring the Sunday Night ESPN opener) and the final day would have been on Sunday, September 13th… 175 days later.

A 2 week shorter season doesn’t sound like a lot, but it would tend to hold the interest of fans as football season would still be getting in full gear.

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