MLB to add extra playoff teams this season?

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MLB to add extra playoff teams this season?

From Comcast SportsNet
NEW YORK (AP) -- Negotiators for baseball players and owners say there is no set deadline for an agreement to expand the playoffs to 10 teams this season. The sides have said for weeks a deal is likely. When players and owners signed their agreement for a new labor contract in November, the section covering the postseason established a March 1 goal for deciding whether the playoffs would increase by two teams for 2012 or 2013. But in recent days both sides said negotiations would continue beyond Thursday if they needed time. The sides spoke on condition of anonymity to The Associated Press because the talks have not been public. The deal would establish a new one-game, wild-card round in each league between the teams with the best records who are not division winners, meaning a third-place team could win the World Series. Creating it for 2012 has been complicated because the regular-season schedule was drafted last spring and summer, and the extra game has to be put in place in a manner that doesn't disrupt the World Series schedule. Further complicating scheduling, the sides reached a consensus that ties for division titles would be broken on the field with a tiebreaker game under the new playoff format, and not by head-to-head record. Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig said Jan. 27 the expansion for this season was on track. "I really believe we'll have the wild card for 2012, this year," he said. "Clubs really want it. I don't think I've ever seen an issue that the clubs want more than to have the extra wild card this year." "We're working on dates right now. That'll all take place. It looks to me like we'll have it because I've told everybody we have to have it. It'll be exciting. One-game playoff, it will start the playoffs in a very exciting manner," he added. According to the memorandum of agreement, the commissioner's office was to give the players' association a modified postseason schedule by Feb. 1. "The association shall have 30 days after receiving the modified 2012 postseason schedule from the office of the commissioner to determine whether it will grant its consent," the agreement states. "Such consent shall not be unreasonably withheld." Head-to-head record has been used since 1995 to determine first place if both teams are going to the postseason. But the sides decided with the start of a one-game, winner-take-all wild-card round, the difference between first place and a wild-card berth is too important to decide with a formula and a tiebreaker game would be played. As part of the labor deal, the Houston Astros will switch to the American League for 2013, creating two 15-team leagues with three divisions each. Players wanted to change to equalize the chances for making the playoffs for every division. Eight of 30 baseball teams have made the playoffs under the format that began in 1995, a year later than intended because of a strike that wiped out the postseason in 94. The postseason included just the league winners from 1903-68, then increased to four teams in 1969. In the NFL, 12 of 32 teams make the playoffs. In both the NBA and NHL, 16 of 30 teams advance to the postseason.

Giants lineup: Gillaspie activated, playing third base against Mets

Giants lineup: Gillaspie activated, playing third base against Mets

Postseason hero Conor Gillaspie is back up with the Giants and on the hot corner Friday night at AT&T Park vs. the Mets.

New York Mets (31-41)

1. Curtis Granderson (L) RF
2. Asdrubal Cabrera (S) 2B
3. Yoenis Cespedes (R) LF
4. Wilmer Flores (R) 3B
5. Michael Conforto (L) CF
6. Lucas Duda (L) 1B
7. Travis d'Arnaud (R) C
8. Jose Reyes (S) SS
9. Seth Lugo (R) P

San Francisco Giants (27-48)

1. Denard Span (L) CF
2. Conor Gillaspie (L) 3B
3. Joe Panik (L) 2B
4. Brandon Belt (L) 1B
5. Austin Slater (R) LF
6. Brandon Crawford (L) SS
7. Nick Hundley (R) C
8. Gorkys Hernandez (R) RF
9. Ty Blach (R) P

Giants DFA Bryan Morris, recall reliever from Triple-A Sacramento

Giants DFA Bryan Morris, recall reliever from Triple-A Sacramento

Bryan Morris allowed five earned runs out of the bullpen while only recording two outs in the Giants' 12-11 loss to the Braves on Thursday. One day later, the Giants designated Morris for assignment. 

In a corresponding move, the Giants recalled lefty reliever Steven Okert from Triple-A Sacramento.

Morris went 2-0 with a 6.43 ERA in 20 games out of the bullpen for the Giants this season. 

Okert has moved up and down from Sacramento and San Francisco this year. With the Giants, he is 1-0 with a 6.23 ERA in 19 appearances.

Down in the minors, Okert owns a 1-0 record with a 2.25 ERA in 11 games while recording four saves.