MLB Commissioner Bud Selig put his stamp of approval on the Houston Astros sale to it's new owner, Jim Crane on Thursday, as well as finalized their move to the American League. This now sets up the addition of more wild card teams to the MLB playoff structure, the realignment of the National and American leagues sans divisions, as well as giving more teams a chance at postseason glory. Make the jump to learn more.
This marks the second time in baseball history that a team jumped ship to the other league, with the Milwaukee Brewers moving to the National League in 1998 along with the addition of the Arizona Diamondbacks and Tampa Bay Rays.
Part of this switch is the creation of two-15 team leagues instead of four divisions inside each league, with the top five teams from each making the playoffs. This will allow for much more evenhanded approach for teams such as the Orioles to make the playoffs instead of being stuck behind the Yankees and Red Sox. Major League Baseball will look to realign the Astros to start fresh before the 2013 season, which is when the playoff restructuring will go into affect as well.
Another factor is the number of interleague games that will be played each season, which will increase with the odd number of teams in each league, which will undoubtedly be something to get used to, along with all of these other changes to our National pastime.