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MLB playoffs 2024: MLB playoff picture, MLB postseason history and FAQ

MLB playoffs, World Series

Who will make the MLB playoffs this year? We’re tracking the postseason with regular updates for the MLB postseason brackets and the playoff seeding outlook for the American League and National League in 2024.

As we do every season, Sportsnaut’s MLB playoffs picture will take a look at where things stand across the league. You can find our MLB postseason predictions from spring training further below, with the latest playoff outlook atop the page.

Bookmark this page for updates throughout the season, including detailed predictions, MLB postseason schedule updates and more.

MLB playoff picture 2024

MLB playoff predictions 2024

Sportsnaut’s 2024 MLB postseason predictions are created before Opening Day and will be updated right before the start of the regular season. After that, updates throughout the regular season will focus on the latest MLB postseason race.

  • National League playoffs
    • NL Wild Card: Philadelphia Phillies over St. Louis Cardinals, Arizona Diamondbacks over Chicago Cubs
    • NLDS: Los Angeles Dodgers over Philadelphia Phillies, Atlanta Braves over Arizona Diamondbacks
    • NLCS: Atlanta Braves over Los Angeles Dodgers in 7 games
    • NL winner: Atlanta Braves
  • American League playoffs:
    • AL Wild Card: New York Yankees over Texas Rangers, Seattle Mariners over Minnesota Twins
    • ALDS: Houston Astros over New York Yankees, Baltimore Orioles over Seattle Mariners
    • ALCS: Baltimore Orioles over Seattle Mariners in six games
    • AL winner: Baltimore Orioles
  • 2024 World Series prediction:
    • Atlanta Braves over Baltimore Orioles in six games
    • World Series MVP: Austin Riley

MLB playoff standings

Here are the latest MLB playoff standings as of Sunday, June 9. Starting in July, our MLB postseason picture will be updated daily.

American League postseason seeding

  1. New York Yankees (AL East)
  2. Cleveland Guardians (AL Central)
  3. Seattle Mariners (AL West)
  4. Baltimore Orioles (Wild Card)
  5. Kansas City Royals (Wild Card)
  6. Minnesota Twins (Wild Card)

National League postseason seeding

  1. Philadelphia Phillies (NL East)
  2. Milwaukee Brewers (NL Central)
  3. Los Angeles Dodgers (NL West)
  4. Atlanta Braves (NL East)
  5. San Diego Padres (NL West)
  6. Cincinnati Reds (NL Central)

MLB Wild Card standings

  • American League
    • AL No. 4 – Baltimore Orioles – (41-22) – +8.5
    • AL No. 5 – Kansas City Royals – (39-26) – +5.5
    • AL No. 6 – Minnesota Twins – (33-31)
      • Boston Red Sox – 1.5 GB
      • Detroit Tigers – 2 GB
      • Tampa Bay Rays – 2 GB
      • Toronto Blue Jays – 2 GB
      • Texas Rangers – 3 GB
      • Houston Astros – 3.5 GB
  • National League
    • NL No. 4 – Atlanta Braves – (35-27) – +4.5
    • NL No. 5 – San Diego Padres (34-35) – +0.5
    • NL No. 6 – Cincinnati Reds (32-33)
      • San Francisco Giants
      • Pittsburgh Pirates – 0.5 GB
      • Chicago Cubs – 1 GB
      • St. Louis Cardinals – 1 GB

Related: MLB stadium rankings 2024

MLB playoffs FAQ

What MLB teams have clinched a playoff spot?

No MLB teams have clinched a playoff spot in 2024. Opening Day is in March and in a 162-game season, no team will clinch a playoff spot until September. Stay tuned for updates.

Related: Best MLB players of all time

How many games are in the first round of the MLB playoffs?

The first round of the MLB playoffs is a best-of-three series. Each Wild Card team that records two wins first advances to the Divisional Round.

Related: Longest home run ever

When do the MLB playoffs start?

The 2024 MLB playoffs will likely start on Tuesday, October 1 with the the first games of the Wild Card Series. While MLB doesn’t release its postseason schedule until early in the regular season, the playoffs typically begin two days after the final game of the regular season (Sunday, September 29).

Related: MLB schedule

What is the new MLB playoff format bracket?

In the new MLB playoff bracket, 12 teams make the playoffs. There are six teams in the American League and six teams in the National League, with the two division-winning teams with the best records receiving a first-round bye and automatically advancing to the Divisional Round. The third division winner hosts a Wild Card Series against the third Wild Card team (No. 6 seed).

Related: Best batting average ever

How many teams make the MLB playoffs?

Twelve teams make the MLB playoffs, with six each from the National League and American League. The top two division winners with the best record in the AL and NL each receive a first-round bye, while the No. 3 division winner and the three Wild Card teams play in the Wild Card round of the MLB playoffs bracket.

Major League Baseball expanded its playoff field in the COVID-shortened 2020 season but the playoffs returned to the standard 10-team format in 2021. While league officials pushed for a 14-team MLB postseason format in 2022, players wouldn’t go for it. and settled on a 12-team playoff.

Related: 2024 MLB Draft order, top prospects

What month does the MLB postseason start?

The MLB postseason starts in October, with the 2024 regular season ending on September 29. The World Series typically ends in November, depending on how long the series goes.

Related: MLB mock draft 2024

Is MLB postseason a bracket?

Yes, MLB uses a 12-team bracket with six teams from the National League and six teams from the American League separated into two sides of the bracket. The winner from each side of the bracket then meets in the World Series.

Related: 2024 MLB Award predictions

How many wild card teams are there in MLB?

There are six wild card teams in the MLB playoffs. Under the new MLB collective-bargaining agreement, the postseason was expanded starting in 2022. There are three wild card teams in the NL and the teams in the AL. Each wild card team with the lowest seed faces the division winner with the lowest record. The format looks like this, with playoff positioning determined by the latest MLB standings.

  • No. 6 wild card team vs No. 3 division winner
  • No. 5 wild card team vs No. 4 wild card team

Each AL and NL Wild Card series is a best-of-three set. The No. 1 seed, the team with the best record in each league, hosts the winner of the 4 vs. 5 matchup. Meanwhile, the No. 2 seed faces the winner of the No. 3 vs No. 6 in the Divisional Round.

Related: Babe Ruth vs Josh Gibson

How many games in MLB playoffs?

The number of games in the MLB postseason depends on how long it takes teams to win each series, ultimately advancing and being crowned World Series champion. Here is a breakdown of the length of each playoff series.

  • MLB Wild Card round: Best of 3
  • MLB Division Series: Best of 5
  • NLCS and ALCS: Best of 7
  • World Series: Best of 7

Related: MLB games today

What team has the most MLB postseason appearances?

The New York Yankees have the most playoff appearances in MLB history, appearing in the MLB playoffs 58 times.

MLB postseason tiebreakers

MLB eliminated ‘Game 163’, which it used as a tiebreaker for teams to determine postseason eligibility. With its elimination, MLB is moving towards a tiebreaker system that will determine postseason eligibility and seeding for the MLB playoffs. Here is the order of determination for each MLB playoff tiebreaker.

  • 1. Head-to-Head record
  • 2. Intradivisional Record
  • 3. Interdivision Record
  • 4. Last Half of Intraleague Games
  • 5. Last Half of Intraleague Games plus one (continues until the tie is broken)

Related: MLB scores

2024 MLB playoffs format – What is the MLB playoff format?

Here is the MLB postseason format, with the new bracket going into effect beginning in 2022.

  • No. 1 seed – Best record in National League/American League, gets first-round bye
  • No. 2 seed – Second-best record by division winner, receives first-round bye
  • No. 3 seed – Division winner with third-best record, faces No. 6 seed
  • No. 4 seed – Wild Card team with best record, hosts No. 5 seed
  • No. 5 seed – Wild Card team with second-best record, faces No. 4 seed
  • No. 6 seed – Third Wild Card team, faces No. 3 seed

The Wild Card round matchups between the No. 3 vs No. 6 and No. 4 vs No. 5 seeds are a best-of-three series. The winner of 3 vs 6 plays the No. 2 seed and 4 vs 5 faces the No. 1 seed.

Related: MLB standings

MLB postseason results 2023

  • Wild Card Series
    • AL: Texas Rangers over Tampa Bay Rays in 2 games
    • AL: Minnesota Twins over Toronto Blue Jays in 2 games
    • NL: Philadelphia Phillies over Miami Marlins in 2 games
    • NL: Arizona Diamondbacks over Milwaukee Brewers in 2 games
  • Division Series
    • AL: Texas Rangers over Baltimore Orioles in 3 games
    • AL: Houston Astros over Minnesota Twins in 4 games
    • NL: Philadelphia Phillies over Atlanta Braves in 4 games
    • NL: Arizona Diamondbacks over Los Angeles Dodgers in 3 games
  • Championship Series
    • ALCS: Texas Rangers over Houston Astros in 7 games
    • NLCS: Arizona Diamondbacks over Philadelphia Phillies in 7 games
  • World Series
    • Texas Rangers over Arizona Diamondbacks in 5 games

Related: Longest World Series droughts

2022 MLB playoff results

MLB: San Diego Padres at Philadelphia Phillies
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Twelve teams made the 2022 MLB playoffs, following the expansion of the MLB postseason format implemented under the new collective bargaining agreement. Here are the teams that made the postseason in 2022 and how they fared.

  • Houston Astros – World Series champion
  • Philadelphia Phillies – National League champions, World Series runner-up
  • New York Yankees – Lost ALCS in four games to Houston Astros
  • San Diego Padres – Lost NLCS in five games to Philadelphia Phillies
  • Los Angeles Dodgers – Lost NLDS in four games to San Diego Padres
  • Atlanta Braves – Lost NLDS in four games to Philadelphia Phillies
  • Seattle Mariners – Lost ALDS in three games to Houston Astros
  • Cleveland Guardians – Lost ALDS in five games to Cleveland Guardians
  • New York Mets – Lost NLWC in three games to San Diego Padres
  • St. Louis Cardinals – Lost NLWC in two games to St. Louis Cardinals
  • Tampa Bay Rays – Lost ALWC in two games to Cleveland Guardians
  • Toronto Blue Jays – Lost ALWC in two games to Seattle Mariners

Related: Longest winning streak in MLB

2021 MLB postseason results

MLB: World Series-Houston Astros at Atlanta Braves
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Here are the scores and results from the 2021 MLB playoffs.

National League

  • Wild Card: Los Angeles Dodgers 3, St. Louis Cardinals 1
  • Division Series: Dodgers over Giants (5 games), Braves over Brewers (4 games)
  • NLCS: Braves over Dodgers (6 games)
  • 2021 National League champions: Atlanta Braves

American League

  • Wild Card: Boston Red Sox 6, New York Yankees 1
  • Division Series: Red Sox over Rays (4 games), Astros over White Sox (4 games)
  • ALCS: Astros over Red Sox (6 games)
  • 2021 American League champions: Houston Astros

World Series 2021

  • Atlanta Braves over Houston Astros (6 games)
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