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Commissioner Manfred is Open to MLB Expansion

Chicago Cubs

It doesn’t feel that long ago that the cold specter of contraction loomed over Major League Baseball. Some will correctly point out that the threat was probably overstated, but, still – it’s a long way to go from that, to this:

Baseball is awash in money as television contracts soar and attendance climbs (the former being the real cow), and it’s conceivable that it could support two more teams – even thrive with it. The current league setup, with 15 teams in each, requiring year-round interleague play and a tricky unbalanced schedule, could probably be improved from a mechanical standpoint with expansion. An additional two teams, making it 16 in each league could make things cleaner. Perhaps four divisions in each league with four teams, not unlike the NFL. The playoffs would become a question, then – still two Wild Cards? Who plays whom and for how many games? Who gets a bye?

On the balance, I wouldn’t quite say I’m pro-expansion at this point, though I’m open to being persuaded it’s a good move for the game. It’s not hard to think of some areas in the country that, thanks to the population shift over the past few decades, might do very well with a baseball team – Las Vegas? San Jose? Or maybe baseball finds its way back to Montreal? Or into Puerto Rico? Or Cuba? There are logistical issues with the latter two, but it certainly makes you think.

Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.