After some tight playoff races here's how things shook out:
Cleveland coasted to the #1 seed with 114 wins behind a potential ROY/MVP year by Thomas Simpkins. Jackson rode a season-closing 19-6 run to its 8th straight South title and the #2 seed.
In the tightest race, Nashville got a 1-hit shutout from Harold Bryant to beat Richmond 9-0 in Game 161. That win gave the Ramblers the season series over the Poor Men and locked up the second wild card.
In the first play-in matchup, #4 Cincinnati takes on #5 Washington D.C.. The Revenge would seem to have the stats edge in both hitting and pitching, but the Waste Managers played 'em to a 5-5 tie in the season series. The winner here gets the top-seeded Katanas.
Salem meets Nashville in the other play-in bracket. The Ramblers are making their second straight playoff appearance, while the Goonies return after a 1-year absence. This could be a slugfest - both of these teams scored over 860 runs and neither staff was up the to the league average ERA. Salem owned the season series, sweeping the Music City squad 10-0. The winner moves on to face 3-time defending AL Champ Jackson.
Turns out the tightest race in the NL was for the #1 seed. Syracuse dropped their last 3 to Ottawa, leaving Mexico City and Las Vegas tied at 102 wins. The teams split their season series, and both went 16-14 in their divisions (2nd tiebreaker). That brings us to the 3rd tiebreaker, runs differential. The Desperadoes scored 828 and gave up 693, for a differential of 135. Vegas plated 782 and allowed 623 for a differential of 159, and wins the #3 tiebreaker for the first seed.
Burlington took its 4th straight East crown and get the 4th seed. Ottawa returns to the playoffs for the first time since Season 3. They meet in the play-in round after splitting their season series. Both teams had effective pitching staffs with ERA's well under 4.00. Ottawa may have an edge on offense, boasting NL RBI champ and MVP candidate Ray Henley. The winner draws #1 seed Las Vegas.
The other play-in series features #3 Syracuse and #6 Oakland in a rematch of the last 2 NLCS's. The Surenos had the NL's best ERA and have the edge there. The Warriors claim the offensive edge, with Marquis Seo posting an MVP-worthy season. The teams split the season series. Winner gets 2 seed Mexico City.