What do the current MLB playoff matchups look like in the National and American league brackets?
With just a few weeks left to play in the 2022 MLB regular season, we take a look at the lay of the land across both leagues and how the playoffs shape up
The big news is the Dodgers’ record-setting run in the NL West, giving them the home-field advantage throughout the playoffs that accompanies the number one seed. Other headline-grabbers are the elimination of Boston and the Angels, both likely to stir the off-season transfer market to a frothy whip.
Over in the American League, the AL West has mirrored their National counterpart, with Houston wiping up the division and will likely clinch the number one overall seed there.
But there are still a few open-ended spots to be claimed as the season winds down, not least of which is the neck-and-neck race in the NL East between the Mets and Braves.
The last National League Wild Card spot is down to the wire between the Brewers and the Phillies, and the AL Wild Card race between Toronto, Tampa, and Seattle is on a razor’s edge.
With the new 12-team format, seeding is all-important. The top two in each league will be given a first-round bye and the bottom four teams will have to go the long way if they are to win the Series.
Los Angeles Dodgers
The NL West victors have a 106-47 record, the best in baseball, which gives them the number-one seed in the National League.
The AL West title was, as predicted, handed to the Houston Astros for the fifth time in six years, giving them a guaranteed berth, although not yet assured of the number one spot on the AL side, but their 101-53 record means that they are almost certain to claim that too.
New York Mets
Max Scherzer’s 200th career win in Milwaukee gave the Mets enough to assure their trip to the playoffs, their first in six years. Although they are in first place in the NL East, they are only 1.5 games ahead of the Braves and nothing is certain just yet.
The defending champions may have to repeat last season’s performance if they want to repeat, going the long way around through the brackets, unless they can pull off a last-second upset of the Mets in the division.
New York Yankees
The Yankees are in the playoffs for the sixth straight season, simultaneously putting the final nail in AL East-rival Boston’s season at the same time. With a win over Toronto, they can clinch the division and get the bye as their reward.
With a convincing 10-4 win over Texas on Sunday, Cleveland clinched the AL Central and securing their trip to the playoffs.
Wild Card Matchups
As of today, September 26, the American League Wild Card round will be between the sixth-ranked Mariners travelling to take on the third-ranked Guardians, and the fifth-ranked Rays heading north to the fourth-ranked Blue Jays.
In the National League, the Phillies are currently sixth and would travel to the number three Cardinals, while the number five Padres would visit the number four Braves.
All of this could change, with only the Braves having clinched a playoff spot among these eight teams. There is every chance that one or more could fall out or be seeded higher, particularly Atlanta, who are within striking distance of the Mets at the top of the division.
Division Series matchups
The winner of the Mariners-Guardians series will go the Big Apple to try and take a bite out of the second-ranked Yankees, while the winner of the Rays-Blue Jays series will head to Space City and see if they can knock off the top-ranked Astros.
The Phillies-Cardinals victor will have to try their hand against the number two Mets, while the winner of the Padres-Braves matchup will have to go west to Chavez Ravine and take on the number one Dodgers.
Best of three, all games with higher seed at home
Best of five
Best of five
Best of seven
* If necessary