The Tigers needed until the final series of the year to clinch a division where the average team record is 75-85 (relevant due to MLB’s unbalanced scheduling, which pits divisional teams against each other 18 times per year). That’s worse than the NL Central, where the average team record is 76-83, despite having two teams with 100 or more losses. The Red Sox are one of baseball’s great embarrassments, but the AL Central has two teams with a worse record than Boston’s.
So why do the Tigers get a free road to the ALDS? Well, you’ll have to ask Bud, but here’s guessing that it’s mostly due to the haste with which this new playoff format was instituted. We already know that because of the league forcing this new format into action this year, the No. 1 seed will have to play its first two ALDS games on the road, at the home of the winner of the one-game playoff.