When Do the MLB Playoffs Start 2022? New Format and Schedule for Postseason
The 2022 MLB Playoffs are almost here. Postseason action kicks off this weekend, so baseball fans are eager to know when games will start, especially with the new format in place this year.
Here's everything you need to know about the 2022 MLB Playoffs.
When Do the MLB Playoffs Start 2022?
The MLB regular season concludes on Wednesday, Oct. 5, followed by an off day on Thursday for postseason teams. The opening Wild Card round begins on Friday, Oct. 7 with four games, up from the usual two.
This round then continues with another four contests on Saturday, Oct. 8 since the Wild Card is no longer just a one-off game. If Game 3 is necessary for any of the four Wild Card series, they will play the deciding contest on Sunday, Oct. 9 ahead of Divisional Round play beginning.
How Many Teams Make the MLB Playoffs?
One change to the MLB postseason format this year is the number of teams that qualify for the playoffs. From 2012-2021 (with the exception of 2020), 10 teams made the playoffs with five in each league -- the three division winners and two Wild Card squads.
Starting in 2022, six teams in each league will make the playoffs (12 total). The three division winners in each league will now be joined by three Wild Card teams.
The playoff teams in the American League are already known, though seeding still needs to be figured out during the final days of the regular season. The six AL teams headed to the postseason are the Houston Astros (AL West winner), Cleveland Guardians (AL Central winner), New York Yankees (AL East winner), Toronto Blue Jays (Wild Card), Seattle Mariners (WC) and Tampa Bay Rays (WC).
The playoff teams in the National League are almost fully set. The five NL teams currently headed to the postseason are the Los Angeles Dodgers (NL West wnner), St. Louis Cardinals (NL Central winner), Atlanta Braves (TBD), New York Mets (TBD) and San Diego Padres (Wild Card). The Braves and Mets will decide the NL East winner, while it's down to the Philadelphia Phillies and Milwaukee Brewers for the final NL Wild Card spot.
MLB Postseason Schedule 2022
Friday, Oct. 7
NL Wild Card A, Game 1, ESPN
NL Wild Card B, Game 1, ESPN
AL Wild Card A, Game 1, ESPN
AL Wild Card B, Game 1, ESPN
Saturday, Oct. 8
AL Wild Card A, Game 2, ESPN
AL Wild Card B, Game 2, ESPN
NL Wild Card A, Game 2, ESPN
NL Wild Card B, Game 2, ESPN
Sunday, Oct. 9
NL Wild Card A, Game 3, ESPN (if necessary)
NL Wild Card B, Game 3, ESPN (if necessary)
AL Wild Card A, Game 3, ESPN (if necessary)
AL Wild Card B, Game 3, ESPN (if necessary)
Tuesday, Oct. 11
NLDS A, Game 1, FOX or FS1
NLDS B, Game 1, FOX or FS1
ALDS A, Game 1, TBS
ALDS B, Game 1, TBS
Wednesday, Oct. 12
NLDS A, Game 2, FOX or FS1
NLDS B, Game 2, FOX or FS1
Thursday, Oct. 13
ALDS A, Game 2, TBS
ALDS B, Game 2, TBS
Friday, Oct. 14
NLDS A, Game 3, FS1
NLDS B, Game 3, FS1
Saturday, Oct. 15
NLDS A, Game 4, FS1 (if necessary)
NLDS B, Game 4, FS1 (if necessary)
ALDS A, Game 3, TBS
ALDS B, Game 3, TBS
Sunday, Oct. 16
ALDS A, Game 4, TBS (if necessary)
ALDS B, Game 4, TBS (if necessary)
NLDS A, Game 5, FS1 (if necessary)
NLDS B, Game 5, FS1 (if necessary)
Monday, Oct. 17
ALDS A, Game 5, TBS (if necessary)
ALDS B, Game 5, TBS (if necessary)
League Championship Series
Tuesday, Oct. 18
NLCS Game 1, FOX or FS1
Wednesday, Oct. 19
NLCS Game 2, FOX or FS1
ALCS Game 1, TBS
Thursday, Oct. 20
ALCS Game 2, TBS
Friday, Oct. 21
NLCS Game 3, FS1
Saturday, Oct. 22
ALCS Game 3, TBS
NLCS Game 4, FOX or FS1
Sunday, Oct. 23
NLCS Game 5, FS1 (if necessary)
ALCS Game 4, TBS
Monday, Oct. 24
ALCS Game 5, TBS (if necessary)
NLCS Game 6, FS1 (if necessary)
Tuesday, Oct. 25
ALCS Game 6, TBS (if necessary)
NLCS Game 7, FOX and FS1 (if necessary)
Wednesday, Oct. 26
ALCS Game 7, TBS (if necessary)
2022 World Series Schedule
- Friday, Oct. 28 - Game 1 (at better record), FOX
- Saturday, Oct. 29 - Game 2 (at better record), FOX
- Monday, Oct. 31 - Game 3, FOX
- Tuesday, Nov. 1 - Game 4, FOX
- Wednesday, Nov. 2 - Game 5, FOX (if necessary)
- Friday, Nov. 4 - Game 6, FOX (if necessary, at better record)
- Saturday, Nov. 5 - Game 7, FOX (if necessary, at better record)
How Do the MLB Playoffs Work?
This year features big changes to the MLB postseason format. Six teams now make the playoffs in each league instead of five, as the number of Wild Card berths has increased from two to three. The addition of a WC team also has resulted in one fewer bye to the Divisional Round. Now only the two teams with the best records in each league will bypass the Wild Card stage. The remaining division winner will be the No. 3 seed and face off against the lowest-ranked WC team.
The Wild Card round has also been tweaked from its previous one-off game format. The WC is now a three-game series rather than a single-elimination game. The winners from this stage then move on to the Divisional Round, which remains a best-of-five series.
The League Championship series is a full best-of-seven round to determine who moves on to the World Series. The WS will follow the usual 2-3-2 format, meaning the team with the better record hosts Games 1 and 2, as well as Games 6 and 7 (if necessary). The lower seed only gets home-field advantage for Games 3-5.
Isaiah De Los Santos is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Isaiah De Los Santos also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username zayyy05328. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.