With interleague play starting this weekend and Bud Selig's new committee for studying the game meeting this year, the schedule has been a hot topic in baseball. A lot of people think it's unfair for some teams to play tougher interleague schedules (pretty much every year) than other teams, when both are competing for the same division crown or the same wild card. Another problem is the length of the playoffs. Another favorite whipping boy is the unbalanced schedule. Here is my solution to all of these "problems."
Realign the leagues and the divisions based on geography and natural rivalries:
New York Mets
New York Yankees
Chicago White Sox
Los Angeles Angels
Los Angeles Dodgers
Your own division: 2 three-game series at home and away against each team (48 games).
Other teams in your league: 1 three-game series at home and away (60 games).
Teams in other league: 1 three-game series (alternating home and away each year (45 games).
Total of 153 games. If every team played 2 three-game series per week, with one day off every week (either a Monday or a Thursday), the season would be 25 and 1/2 weeks long. For example, if they started on Monday, April 5, like they did this year, they would be finished on September 30, giving a couple day head-start to the post-season.
Playoffs would remain at three division winners from each league, plus a wild card from each league. With this format, all playoff rounds could be best of 7.
To make it work, both leagues use the designated hitter. We're headed that way anyway.