MLB postseason: Reds-Pirates NL Wild Card Game start time announced

Specifics regarding AL postseason also announced

PITTSBURGH -- Major League Baseball has announced the start time for the Cincinnati Reds’ one-game postseason matchup against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The National League Wild Card Game will kick off the 2013 postseason Tuesday at 8:07 p.m. The game will be played at PNC Park in Pittsburgh. 

The American League Wild Card Game will be played the following night on Wednesday, Oct. 2 at 8:07 p.m.

Both games will be broadcast on TBS. ESPN Radio will provide live national coverage of all 2013 MLB Postseason games, including the Wild Card games.

Specifics regarding the N.L. matchup were locked in place Saturday when the Pirates (94-68) clinched home-field advantage in the Wild Card Game after their 8-3 victory over the Reds (90-72).

Cincinnati and Pittsburgh have met five times in the playoffs: 1970, 1972, 1975, 1979 and 1990, when the Reds won their last World Series title. Tuesday's get-together will be the Pirates' first playoff game in 21 years. 

Right-hander Johnny Cueto (5-2), who is 8-2 career at PNC Park, will face left-hander Francisco Liriano (16-8), who is 0-3 in four starts against Cincinnati this season.

Both the Pirates and the Reds play in the N.L. Central, which was won by the St. Louis Cardinals (97-65). The Cards, owners of home-field advantage throughout the N.L playoffs, clinched the division title Friday evening with a 7-0 win over the Chicago Cubs.

St. Louis will play the winner of the Reds/Pirates in a best-of-five series. That series begins Thursday.

This is the first time in MLB history that three teams from the same division will appear in the same postseason. That was made possible because of a new playoff format instituted by the MLB in 2012.

In The American League

The Cleveland Indians (92-70) clinched home-field advantage for the Wild Card Game on Sunday with a 5-1 victory over the Minnesota Twins.

Cleveland went 21-6 in September, the the best in the majors. The Indians won 15 of their last 17 games, including their last 10 in a row, beating up on the White Sox, Royals, Astros and Twins along the way.                                                               

Even though the regular season ended Sunday, the Tribe won't know their opponent until late Monday evening. That's because the Texas Ranges (91-71) and the Tampa Bay Rays (91-71) tied for the second Wild Card berth.

Texas and Tampa Bay will play a tiebreaker game Monday at 8:07 p.m. The game will be played in Arlington, Texas  because the Rangers hold the tiebreaker over the Rays because of a 4-3 edge in the season series.

The winner of that game will play Cleveland on Wednesday.

Playoff Format Change In 2012

With the adoption of the new collective bargaining agreement in November 2011, baseball commissioner Bud Selig announced that a new playoff system would begin within two years; the change was ultimately put into place in 2012.The format chosen was the one-game Wild Card playoff.

Last season St. Louis knocked off the Atlanta Braves, 6-3, in the NL Wild Card Game.

In the American League, the Baltimore Orioles defeated the Texas Rangers, 5-1.

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