Remember: This year, in addition to each of the six division winners advancing to October, the second-place clubs in each division will also get an automatic berth. The clubs with the next two best records in each league will be the Wild Card teams.
Should there be any ties for any of the above, this is how they will be settled in the 2020 format.
Scenario: Two teams tie for a division championship, second place or Wild Card spot
Head-to-head record will be used to break the tie, and this should be relatively straightforward for first place or second place in the divisions, because the teams will have played each other so often. For example, if the Phillies and Marlins were to tie for second place in the National League East, the Marlins would officially get that standing by virtue of their 7-3 record in the regular-season series. The Phillies would then have to be in Wild Card position to reach the postseason.
If two teams from separate divisions are tied for a Wild Card spot (remember, there were no games outside of a team's East, Central or West region this year), the next tiebreaker goes to the team with the higher winning percentage in its own division -- also known as intradivision record. So if, say, the Phillies and Cardinals were tied for the final Wild Card spot, the determining factor would be the Phillies’ winning percentage against NL East opponents as compared to the Cardinals’ winning percentage against NL Central opponents.
Should those winning percentages happen to be identical, the tiebreaker would go to the team with the higher winning percentage in the last 20 intradivision games (plus one game until the tie is broken).
Scenario: Three- or four-way tie for a division championship, second place or Wild Card spot
If all of the tied clubs are in the same division and have, therefore, played against each other, then the team with the highest winning percentage in games among those three clubs is the top seed, followed by the team with the second-highest winning percentage in those games and then the third-highest.
So if, for example, the Marlins, Phillies and Mets were all tied for second place in the NL East, and the Marlins’ 11-9 record against the Phillies and Mets was the best of the bunch, the Marlins would lay claim to that spot, and the only way the Phillies and/or Mets could advance is if they are in Wild Card position.
Should two of the above records be identical, the two-team tiebreaker scenario applies. Should all three be identical, then the club with the highest winning percentage in all intradivision games is the top seed.
If the teams involved in the tie are not all from the same division and therefore have NOT all played each other during the regular season, then the club with the highest winning percentage in intradivision games receives the highest seed, followed by the team with the second-highest intradivision winning percentage, etc. So if it were Phillies, Cardinals and Giants all knotted up for the last Wild Card spot, whoever fared best in their division would get the spot.
If two of the involved teams have identical intradivision records, the two-team tiebreaker rules apply. If three of the involved teams have identical intradvision records, then the club with the highest winning percentage in the last half of intradivision games is the higher seed.