- The number of games in a baseball season varies considerably depending on the league, with different structures and timelines for MLB, Minor League, College, High School, and Youth Baseball Leagues.
One of the most frequently asked questions about the baseball is, “How many baseball games are in a season?”
The short answer to that question is: it depends.
In this comprehensive guide, we will break down the specifics of each league’s season and highlight the unique unique factors that influence their game counts.
Table of Contents
- How Many Games are in the MLB season?
- How Many Baseball Games are in a Season for Minor League Baseball
- Independent Baseball Leagues
- How Many Games in College Baseball Season for D1, D2, and D3 baseball
- How Many Games during the Road to the College World Series
- When Does Baseball Season Start and End – High School Baseball
- How Many baseball Games – Middle School
- How Many Games of Baseball in Recreation Youth Baseball Leagues
- Number of Games in the Tournament / Travel Baseball Leagues
- Delayed / Cancelled Games
- Frequently Asked Questions
- You May Also Like
How Many Games are in the MLB season?
Major League Baseball (MLB), recognized as the top professional baseball league in the United States, stands out with its rigorous 162-game regular season.
This long baseball season is embarked upon by all 30 MLB teams, fifteen teams each from the National and American Leagues, established in 1961 for the American League and 1962 for the National League.
Within each league, there are three divisions – East, Central and West:
- AL East Division
- AL Central Division
- AL West Division
- NL East Division
- NL Central Division
- NL West Division
Quick Look at the MLB Divisions
The American League (AL)
- AL East – Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox, NY Yankees, Tampa Bay Rays, and Toronto Blue Jays
- AL Central – Chicago White Sox, Cleveland Guardians (Indians), Detroit Tigers, Kansas City Royals, and Minnesota Twins
- AL West – Houston Astros, LA Angles, Oakland Athletics, Seattle Mariners, and Texas Rangers
The National League (NL)
- NL East – Atlanta Braves, Miami Marlins, New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, and Washington (D.C.) Nationals
- NL Central – Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds, Milwaukee Brewers, Pittsburgh Pirates, and St. Louis Cardinals
- NL West – Colorado Rockies, Arizona Diamondbacks, LA Dodgers, San Diego Padres, and San Francisco Giants
Since 2013, each of the MLB divisions has contained five teams. At the end of the 2012 MLB season, the Houston Astros moved to the AL West from the NL Central.
How Many games in MLB Regular Season
Major League Baseball’s regular season begins in early April and stretches until late September.
During this time, each team plays 162 games, divided almost equally between home and away games with MLB teams typically play the teams in their own division the most.
|Since 1998, there have been 30 Major League Baseball (MLB) teams playing a total of 2430 games each season. |
Each team plays 162 games or 81 as the “home” team, 81 as the “visitor” team.
This holds true even on occasions when a game is played at a ballpark not home to either team. For example, during the COVID virus-shortened, 60-game season of 2020, Canada did not allow players to go back and forth between it and USA. So the Blue Jays played most of their “home” games at Sahlen Field which is their Triple-A affiliate field in Buffalo, NY.
Games in which AL teams play NL teams are called interleague games (there were 20 interleague games in 2022, and up to 46 interleague games in 2023).
How Many Baseball Games in Playoffs and World Series
Following the regular season, the top teams enter the MLB playoffs, a series of best-of-five or best-of-seven matchups that determine the champions of the American and National Leagues.
Wild Card Series
The single elimination, winner-take-all Wild Card game (in use from 2012- to 2019, 2021) was replaced with the best-of-three, Wild Card Series in 2022.
Divisional Series (ALDS, NLDS)
Divisional Series’ format is a best-of-five series, meaning the victorious team must win three games before advancing to the Championship Series.
League Championship Series (ALCS, NLCS)
The League Championship Series is a best-of-seven series, with teams needing to win four games in order to advance.
The World Series follows the same structure as the Championship Series. A best-of-seven with four games being necessary to win (2-3-2 or 2 home games, 3 away games, followed by 2 home games). After a team wins four games, they will be crowned as the Major League Baseball champions.
The culmination of the MLB season is the World Series, pitting the league champions against each other in a best-of-seven showdown.
The playoffs and World Series can add at least 32 games and allows up to 53 postseason games.
Winter Ball (a.k.a. Winter League)
Winter ball, often referred to as the winter leagues, is a popular series of professional baseball leagues that play during the late fall and winter months.
These leagues primarily take place in warmer climates and traditionally feature a mix of up-and-coming prospects, established major league players looking to refine specific skills, and veterans hoping stay competitive and to catch the eye of major league organizations.
Numerous professional leagues in warmer climates (such as the Dominican Winter League and the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League) host games during the winter months, providing an opportunity for MLB players to continue playing:
- In the Dominican Winter League (Liga de Béisbol Profesional de la República Dominicana), each team generally plays a 60-game schedule
- In the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League (Liga Venezolana de Béisbol Profesional), each team plays a 63-game schedule
- The Puerto Rican Professional Baseball League (Liga de Béisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente) has a slightly shorter schedule, with each team playing around 40 games in a season
As with all baseball leagues, the exact structure and game count of each winter league can be subject to change due to various factors such as logistics, league decisions, and external events like the weather or global health situations.
|Not all MLB teams allow their players to participate in these leagues due to injury concerns.|
It is important to note that these games, while often competitive and valuable for player development, are not officially associated with the MLB and therefore do not count towards the regular season total, postseason or playoff games.
Before the regular season commences, teams participate in spring training, a series of practices and exhibition games designed to prepare players for the upcoming season.
Spring training typically begins in late February and runs until just before Opening Day in early April.
Spring training is split into two leagues, the Grapefruit League in Florida and the Cactus League in Arizona, and includes all 30 MLB teams.
While the number of spring training games can vary slightly year by year, teams generally play around 30 games.
It’s important to note that these games are considered exhibition matches and, as such, do not count towards the 162-game regular season. However, they are a vital part of a team’s preparation and player evaluation process.
The addition of winter ball and spring training games to the regular and postseason games means that MLB players have the potential to play a significant amount of baseball each year.
How Many Baseball Games are in a Season for Minor League Baseball
As of 2021, there are 11 leagues consisting of 120 minor league teams. This works out to be 4 minor leagues for each MLB teams (there are 30 MLB teams).
- Arizona Complex (Fall) League (a.k.a. Arizona League) – 6 teams
- Florida Complex (Fall) League – 18 teams
- Dominican Summer League – 46 teams
Low-A (Class A low)
- Low-A East (replaced the South Atlantic State League) – 12 teams
- Low-A Southeast (replaced the Florida State League) – 12 teams
- Low-A West (replaced the California League) – 6 teams
High-A (Class A high)
- High-A East (replaced the Carolina League) – 12 teams
- High-A Central (replaced the Midwest League) – 12 teams
- High-A West (replaced the Northwest League) – 6 teams
Double-A (Class AA)
- Northeast (replaced the Eastern League)- 12 teams
- South (replaced the Southern League) – 8 teams
- Central (replaced the Texas League) – 10 teams
Triple-A (Class AAA)
- Triple-A East (replaced the International League) – 20 teams
- Triple-A West (replaced the Pacific Coast League) – 10 teams
The duration and timelines of Minor League Baseball seasons can vary depending on the level. Here is a breakdown level by level, detailing the typical start and end months, along with the number of games played.
Triple-A (AAA) Baseball
Triple-A Baseball is the apex of Minor League Baseball. In a standard season, Triple-A teams play 150 games.
The season traditionally begins in April and concludes in September, closely mirroring the MLB’s regular-season timeline.
Double-A (AA) Baseball
Just beneath Triple-A, Double-A Baseball is a significant milestone for players. It is at this level where prospects begin to face competition that more closely mirrors that in the Major Leagues.
In a regular season, Double-A teams play 138 games. Similar to Triple-A, the Double-A season generally commences in April and ends in September.
High-A Baseball leagues represent a critical point for many young players, with increased competition compared to lower levels.
In a typical High-A season, teams play 132 games. The season usually starts in April and runs through September, much like Triple-A and Double-A leagues.
Low-A Baseball is often the first full-season league for young players embarking on their professional careers.
In this league, teams typically play 132 games over a season that starts in April and wraps up in September.
Rookie Advanced Leagues
Rookie Advanced leagues are often the first taste of professional baseball for many players, especially those coming straight from high school or college.
These leagues play a shorter season to align with the timing of the MLB Draft and the signing of draftees. Teams usually play about 76 games in a season that typically starts in June and ends in September.
These leagues generally feature the youngest players in Minor League Baseball, such as recent high school graduates and young international signings.
Given the age and experience level of the players, the Rookie leagues play a shorter season, with teams playing about 60 games. The Rookie League season usually begins in June and ends in September.
Foreign Rookie Leagues
Finally, the Foreign Rookie leagues, which include leagues like the Dominican Summer League, provide young international players with their first experience of professional baseball.
These leagues also operate a shorter schedule, with teams playing around 72 games. The Foreign Rookie League season typically kicks off in June and finishes in August.
Independent Baseball Leagues
Independent baseball leagues offer a unique flavor to America’s pastime, operating outside the umbrella of Major League Baseball and its affiliate Minor League system.
These leagues provide a blend of seasoned veterans, undrafted diamonds in the rough, and comeback hopefuls a chance to showcase their talent.
With diverse rosters and an eclectic mix of ballparks, from bustling city stadiums to intimate rural diamonds, the independent leagues offers a contrarian perspective to “making the Show”.
Number of IBL teams
There are seven well-known independent leagues consisting of 73 teams.
These leagues are not directly affiliated with MiLB or MLB but the American Association, Atlantic, Frontier and Pioneer Leagues are designated as MLB Partner Leagues which altogether have 47 teams.
- American Association of Professional Baseball (AAPB) – MLB Partner
- Number of teams: 12 (6 per division)
- Level of play: In between High-A and Double-A
- Note: Players are usually not scouted heavily by Major League teams
- Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB) – MLB Partner
- Number of teams: 10 (6 per division)
- Level of play: Open classification of play (the highest level of professional baseball other than Major League Baseball)
- Note: Players are highly experienced professionals (A, AA, AAA) with over 40% having prior MLB service
- Empire Professional Baseball League (EPBL)
- Number of teams: 6 (no divisions)
- Level of play: Rookie to Low-A
- Note: Primarily summer Pro Ball independent Baseball showcase opportunity for players to earn a Professional contract; no salary
- Frontier League – MLB Partner
- Number of teams: 15 ( 7 teams in the East division, 8 teams in the West division)
- Level of play: Low-A
- Note: Oldest independent League
- Pecos League
- Number of teams: 16 ( 8 teams in the Mountain division, 8 teams in the Pacific West division)
- Level of play: Rookie
- Note: Drive to their own away games; little to no pay
- Pioneer League – MLB Partner
- Number of teams: 10 (5 teams in the Northern Division, 5 teams in the Southern Division)
- Level of play: Rookie
- Note: split season format
- United States Professional Baseball League – 4 teams
- Number of teams:
- Level of play:
- Note: not heavily scouted by MiLB/MLB though few players have made it to the Big Show
How Many Games in College Baseball Season for D1, D2, and D3 baseball
College baseball, under the governing body of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), has a unique season structure that balances athletic competition with academic responsibilities.
It spans three divisions: Division I, Division II, and Division III, with each having a different limit on the number of games that can be played in a season.
NCAA Division I
NCAA Division I represents the highest level of intercollegiate athletics, consisting of 299 teams in 24 conferences.
D1 players usually receive full or partial scholarships (depending on the school’s funding level) to cover tuition, books, fees, and room and board.
In a typical Division I baseball season, teams are allowed to play a maximum of 56 regular season games. The season generally begins in mid-February and extends through late May or early June.
Following the regular season, teams may qualify for postseason play, which includes conference tournaments, regional and super regional tournaments, and ultimately the College World Series.
The College World Series, usually held in mid-June, marks the culmination of the Division I college baseball season.
NCAA Division II
In NCAA Division II, where the emphasis is more evenly balanced between athletics and academics, teams are permitted to play up to 50 games in the regular season.
NCAA Division II consists of 274 teams in 23 conferences. D2 baseball players may receive a small scholarship.
The season timeline closely follows that of Division I, starting in February and ending in May.
The Division II postseason consists of regional and super regional tournaments, leading up to the Division II College World Series held in late May or early June.
NCAA Division III
Division III, where institutions choose to emphasize the overall collegiate experience over high-profile athletic competition, has a shorter season with teams allowed to play a maximum of 40 regular season games.
Division III has 389 teams in 45 conferences with D3 baseball players NOT qualifying for any baseball scholarships.
The season typically begins in March, slightly later than Divisions I and II due to many schools being located in regions with later springs, and concludes in May.
The NCAA Division III Baseball Tournament has been played annually since 1976 with fifty-eight Division 3 baseball college teams competed each other. The postseason culminates in the Division III College World Series held in late May.
It’s worth noting that, in all three divisions, the number of games played in the postseason does not count toward these regular season maximums.
Also, due to weather conditions and other factors, not all teams may reach the maximum number of games in a season.
Thus, the structure of the college baseball season reflects the NCAA’s commitment to ensuring student-athletes maintain a balanced experience, with opportunities for high-level competition while not overshadowing their academic pursuits.
How Many Games during the Road to the College World Series
As the sun beats down and the roar of the crowd swells, college baseball’s elite face off in a thrilling series of matchups that epitomize the passion, tenacity, and drama of the sport during each summer in Omaha, Nebraska.
The NCAA College World Series serves as the thrilling conclusion to the Division I baseball season, showcasing the nation’s top eight teams in a double-elimination tournament. But to reach this prestigious event, teams must navigate a challenging playoff structure that truly tests their mettle.
The playoffs begin with the NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament, often referred to as “Regionals,” where 64 teams, consisting of 30 D1 conference champions and 34 at-large selections chosen by the NCAA Division I Baseball Committee, compete
These teams are divided into 16 regional sites, with each site hosting a four-team, double-elimination tournament.
The team that emerges victorious from each of these regionals, a total of 16 teams, advances to the next round.
The following round is the “Super Regionals,” which consists of 8 best-of-three series, hosted by the higher seed team.
The eight winners from these series punch their ticket to the College World Series in Omaha.
The College World Series
The College World Series itself is divided into two parts. The first part is similar to the regional round: the eight teams are split into two double-elimination brackets with four teams each.
The team that survives each bracket advances to the final round. This format means that a team can play between two to three games if they’re eliminated early or as many as five games if they make it through the losers’ bracket to win their bracket.
The final round of the College World Series is a best-of-three championship series between the winners of each bracket. The first team to win two games in this series is crowned the national champion.
Total Number of Games
So, in total, a team would play a minimum of three games if they win their regional and super regional series without a loss and then lose their first two games in the College World Series.
On the flip side, a team could play a maximum of 17 games if they reach the limit in all the double-elimination rounds and the championship series goes to three games.
When Does Baseball Season Start and End – High School Baseball
High School baseball seasons can significantly vary depending on several factors, including individual state rules, school district regulations, student population density, number of schools in a district, and even regional weather conditions.
Regardless of the specific parameters, high school baseball remains an integral part of many students’ high school experience, providing valuable lessons in teamwork, dedication, and sportsmanship.
In a typical high school baseball season, teams can generally expect to play between 20 to 30 games, although this range can vary.
For example, in New Jersey, there are fifteen school conferences with each conference containing 5 to 14 divisions. Each division in turn has five to 10 teams.
The season usually commences in the early spring, around late February or early March, and extends through late May or early June.
Warmer states, where baseball can be played year-round, such as Texas, Florida, or California, might have slightly longer seasons or additional tournaments that allow for more games.
Following the regular season, high school teams may participate in district, regional, and even state championship tournaments.
The format and length of these tournaments can greatly vary depending on the state and the number of teams participating.
In some states, a team that advances deep into the state tournament might end up playing as many as 10 or more additional games.
However, similar to college and professional baseball, these postseason games are not counted in the regular season total.
Other Factors Affecting Season Length
It’s worth noting that other factors can influence the length of the high school baseball season.
Weather, for instance, plays a significant role, especially in regions where cold or rainy springs can lead to game cancellations.
Additionally, individual school districts or state athletic associations may have rules that limit the number of games that can be played in a week, which can also affect the total number of games in a season.
In summary, the high school baseball season provides a foundational experience for young athletes, nurturing their skills and sportsmanship within a structure that accommodates their educational priorities.
How Many baseball Games – Middle School
Middle school baseball provides a vital entry point for many young players into organized baseball.
The structure and length of middle school baseball seasons can vary widely depending on school district policies, regional athletic association rules, and local weather conditions.
In a typical middle school baseball season, teams usually play between 12 to 20 games, though this range can be different depending on various factors.
The season usually begins in early spring, around March or April, and extends through late May or early June.
It’s important to note that, due to the younger age of the athletes and their developmental needs, middle school baseball games are typically fewer and shorter in duration than those at the high school level.
Depending on the school district or regional athletic association, middle school teams may participate in end-of-season tournaments or championship games.
The format and length of these tournaments can vary greatly, with some regions opting for a single-elimination tournament and others utilizing a double-elimination or round-robin format.
The number of additional games played during the postseason will depend on a team’s success and the specific tournament format.
Other Factors Affecting Season Length
Several factors can influence the length and structure of a middle school baseball season. Regional weather conditions can significantly impact the season, especially in regions with unpredictable spring weather.
In these areas, it’s not uncommon for games to be postponed or even canceled due to inclement weather. Additionally, individual school districts or athletic associations may have specific rules that limit the number of games or dictate specific rest periods for pitchers, which can also influence the total number of games in a season.
In summary, middle school baseball serves as a critical developmental stage for young baseball players.
The length and structure of the season are designed to balance the competitive aspect of the sport with the physical and mental development needs of the young athletes.
How Many Games of Baseball in Recreation Youth Baseball Leagues
Youth baseball leagues serve as the first organized introduction to the sport for many young players.
The structure of a season in youth baseball can differ depending on the specific league and regional influences.
Youth baseball leagues, such as Little League or Babe Ruth League, typically schedule anywhere between 10 to 14 games in a regular season, though this range can differ depending on the local league’s guidelines and structure.
Based on my own experience as a youth league commissioner in the past, I can outline a rough breakdown of the number of teams and games during a typical spring season:
- Pre-K and K Tee-Ball (kindergarten) – 6 to 8 teams
- Farm A (first graders) – 6 to 8 teams
- Farm A & AA (second graders) – 6 to 8 teams
- Minors (third and fourth graders) – 4 to 6 teams
- Majors (fifth and sixth graders) – 6 to 8 teams
- Pony/Seniors (seventh through ninth graders) – 4 to 6 teams
- Babe Ruth (tenth graders through twelfth graders) – 4 to 6 teams
I am sharing this information because the total number of baseball games in a season will be dictated by the field availability.
These games are usually spread out over several months, generally coinciding with the late spring and summer season, to accommodate school schedules and ensure the players’ focus on their academics is not disrupted.
Many youth baseball leagues have postseason tournaments, with varying formats depending on the specific league’s structure and the age level of the players.
These tournaments usually take place at the end of the regular season and can add several more games to a team’s schedule, depending on how far a team advances.
An example is the renowned Little League World Series, an international tournament that brings together teams from around the world to compete for the championship.
Other Factors Affecting Season Length
Just as with other levels of baseball, several factors can influence the length and structure of a youth baseball season.
Local weather conditions can affect the scheduling of games, especially in regions with more variable spring and summer weather. Additionally, individual leagues may have specific rules in place that limit the number of games in a week or specify certain rest periods, particularly for pitchers, to ensure the safety and health of the young players.
Number of Games in the Tournament / Travel Baseball Leagues
Tournament baseball, also known as travel or select baseball, offers a more competitive playing environment for youth players seeking a higher level of play.
These leagues are usually separate from local recreational leagues and involve traveling to different locations, sometimes even out of state, to play against other select teams.
Unlike traditional youth leagues, tournament baseball doesn’t have a formal regular season with a set schedule of games. Instead, teams typically participate in a series of weekend tournaments throughout the year.
A typical travel baseball league will have 4 to 6 teams in each bracket (level of play) and will play two games per week during two months. Obviously, the structure of a tournament baseball season can vary widely, depending on the specific organization and age level of the players.
Each tournament generally spans a weekend, from Friday to Sunday, with the possibility of playing multiple games each day (it’s common to play six games in two days).
Teams are often grouped in pool play, with the top teams from each pool moving on to elimination rounds.
The number of games a team plays in a tournament will depend on how far they advance in the elimination rounds. Over the course of a year, a tournament team might participate in 10 to 15 tournaments or more, potentially playing 40-70 games, or even more for highly competitive teams.
Postseason and Championship Tournaments
While not a ‘postseason’ in the traditional sense, many tournament baseball organizations host season-ending championship tournaments.
These tournaments often involve more teams and offer a higher level of competition. Teams may need to qualify for these events based on their performance in previous tournaments.
Other Factors Affecting Season Length
Several factors can affect the length and structure of a tournament baseball season. The number of tournaments available, travel logistics, and the team’s budget can all influence the number of games a team plays.
Weather can also play a significant role, as tournaments can often be disrupted or even canceled due to rain or other adverse conditions.
In summary, tournament baseball offers a more competitive alternative to traditional recreational youth baseball. While the season structure and game count can vary widely, it provides an opportunity for skilled youth players to compete at a high level and develop their baseball skills further.
It’s important to note that due to the increased travel and time commitment, tournament baseball may not be the right fit for every player or family.
It’s always best to consider all options and choose the one that best fits the player’s skills, goals, and lifestyle.
Delayed / Cancelled Games
In Major League Baseball (MLB), a game that is unable to be started or completed due to weather, most commonly rain, is known as a “rainout.” How a rainout is handled depends on the specific circumstances of the game.
Game hasn’t started
If a game is called off due to rain before it even begins, it is typically rescheduled for a later date. Often this happens on a shared “off day” for the two teams later in the season or as part of a doubleheader, where two games are played back-to-back on the same day.
Game started but hasn’t reached official game status
If a game starts but is halted by rain before it becomes an official game (typically 4.5 innings if the home team is ahead or 5 innings if the visiting team is ahead), it is usually resumed from the point of stoppage if the schedule allows. If the schedule does not permit resumption, then the game is considered a “no game,” and all statistics are wiped out. The game is then replayed from the start at a later date.
Game has reached official game status
If a game has reached official game status and is then stopped due to rain, it can be considered a completed game. The team leading at the time play is stopped is declared the winner. However, if the game is tied when play is stopped, it is suspended and resumed from the point of stoppage at a later date.
Sometimes, rather than stopping a game entirely, officials might opt for a rain delay, pausing the game in the hope that the weather will clear up. Rain delays can last for several hours before a game is either resumed or officially postponed.
The MLB has comprehensive rules and guidelines that dictate the procedure for handling rainouts to ensure fairness and maintain the integrity of the sport. However, individual circumstances can sometimes lead to exceptions or variations in how these procedures are applied.
Understanding the number of games in a baseball season, from the MLB to youth leagues, provides an insight into the structure of the sport and the differing demands of each level.
As players progress from youth leagues to high school, college, and potentially professional leagues, the length of the season and the number of games increase, reflecting higher levels of commitment and competition.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why are there 162 games in an MLB season?
This format was established in the early 1960s to balance the schedule as new teams were added to the league. It has remained unchanged due to the balance it offers between home and away games and divisional and inter-league play.
When does the MLB season start and end?
Typically, the MLB regular season starts in early April and ends in late September, followed by the postseason in October.
How many games do college baseball teams play in a season?
NCAA Division I teams can play a maximum of 56 regular season games, Division II teams can play 50, and Division III teams are limited to 40.
How many home games are there in a typical MLB season?
In a typical MLB season, each team plays approximately half its games at home, which would be around 81 home games.
What are the 30 MLB teams?
The 30 MLB teams are divided into the American League and National League, each with three divisions: East, Central, and West. The exact teams can be found on the MLB’s official website.
Has MLB ever not made up a rainout or delayed game?
Most of the time, Major League Baseball (MLB) does its best to make up rainouts and delayed games to ensure that all teams play the full 162-game season. This is because the results of each game contribute to the overall standings and can impact which teams make it to the postseason.
However, there have been instances when rainouts were not made up, especially when the outcome of the game would not affect the postseason picture. For example, if a game late in the season is rained out and neither of the teams involved are in contention for a playoff spot, MLB may decide not to reschedule the game.
Similarly, if a rainout occurs late in the season between two teams that won’t face each other again and the game won’t impact the playoff race, the game may not be rescheduled. The league always has to balance the need to complete every game with practical considerations like scheduling and potential impacts on player health.
One thing to note is that in case of games that have implications on the playoff race or seeding, MLB will always make the utmost effort to ensure those games are played. In these cases, it’s vital to maintain the competitive integrity of the sport and ensure each team has had an equal opportunity over the full 162-game season