My idea for how the MLB schedule should look is a little extreme and will never happen.
When I started thinking about this issue I really focused in on the unbalanced schedule and how teams get a large advantage purely because of the teams in their division. So my first goal was to make the schedule completely even. This implies that every team should play every other team exactly the same number of times.
To set up this system I started with a number of rules that define how it works.
- No more inter-league play - You will only play a team from the other league in the playoffs. This means that every team will face only the 14 other teams in their league.
- Each meeting between teams will consist of 5 games in a row. You will play your entire rotation against their entire rotation.
- You will play one series at home and one series away against each team in your league.
- You will always have Monday and Tuesday off as travel / rest days
- Players get a guaranteed two days off a week (I picked Monday / Tuesday because I though that would be best)
- You are completing against another team with your whole rotation against their rotation. It will not be a luck based system determining if you missed their ace or not.
- You are able to arrange your rotation as you see fit because they will all pitch every week
- The schedule is completely balanced.
- The biggest downside from this system is the time required. This requires 28 weeks of play time, and with a week off for the all star games you are looking at 29 weeks. Looking at this year as an example we would need to start the season at the 19th of March and go until the 5th of October.
- There would be a reduction in he total number of games played, meaning that teams would be getting less revenue. The total would go down to 140 games played. That drops 22 games from the teams earnings, which is probably unacceptable
- It would mess up all the stats completely
- Your best pitchers would pitch less