Right, but HOW will they schedule this, and will it lead to more, less, or the same amount of overall interleague games?
From Jayson Stark ESPNInterleague:
The thinking behind reducing the number of "rivalry" games has nothing to do with the rivalries themselves. It's an attempt to have all teams in a division play as close to the same schedule as possible. So every team in each NL division will likely play one series each against the same five teams in a rotating AL division every year. Then the only difference in all of their schedules will be the three or four "rivalry" games that will fill out every team's interleague schedule. Each team would play either 18 or 20 interleague games apiece under the new format. The exact number hasn't been decided. Assigning rivals:
It's now going to be mandatory that each team have some sort of interleague rival. But a few teams will rotate rivals. In the AL East/NL East, the Red Sox and Blue Jays will "share" rivalries with the Braves and Phillies. In the AL West/NL West, the Rangers and Astros will "share" rivalries with the Diamondbacks and Rockies. And elsewhere, you'll get Pirates-Tigers and Padres-Mariners every darned year -- for now anyway.Unbalanced or balanced?
Are there teams -- particularly in the AL East -- pushing for a more balanced schedule? Absolutely. But they've been overruled. In general, owners and players have agreed, at this point, that since the new postseason format puts much greater importance on finishing first, it makes sense to keep the schedule unbalanced. But sources say the schedule czars would prefer to limit intradivision games to 18 per team. It's possible, if the math doesn't work, that that could change slightly. But the powers that be prefer not to make the schedule any more unbalanced than it already is. And we sure hope they succeed.From The Sporting News from New York Daily News from ESPN from Tinker to Evers to Chance
Major League Baseball has plenty of details to iron out about the 2013 schedule, and one of the proposals under consideration is the reduction of “natural rivalry” games in interleague play, ESPN.com reports.
The Houston Astros will move from the NL Central to the AL West after this season, creating two 15-team leagues. That will result in at least one interleague series being played at all times.
According to the New York Daily News, each team likely would play 15 interleague games per season under the new plan. That would reduce the number of natural rivalry games from six to three. So, for example, the New York Yankees and New York Mets would play only three times per season, instead of playing a three-game series in each team’s home park.
Much still will be taken into consideration before a decision is made, and a source told the New York Daily News that the league is considering ways to preserve the high-profile natural rivalries (Yankees-Mets, Chicago White Sox-Chicago Cubs) while reducing others (San Diego Padres-Seattle Mariners).
Another idea would be for the natural rivals to play a two-game series in each team’s home park.