The MLB has a plan in place in the event that the Yankees and Red Sox finish the season with the same record.
Here’s what would happen.
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If the Yankees and Red Sox both finish the season with identical records, a one-game playoff will be held to determine who goes to the playoffs and who does not. This game would be held at a neutral site, most likely Fenway Park in Boston, since the Red Sox have a better record than the Yankees in head-to-head matchup.
This scenario has happened before in baseball history; in 1978, the Yankees and Red Sox finished the season with identical 99-63 records, and the Red Sox won a one-game playoff 5-4. The most recent example of this happening was in 2008, when the Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers both finished with 96-66 records. The Cubs won a one-game playoff 5-3 to go to the playoffs.
What Happens If the Yankees and Red Sox Tie?
In the event that the Yankees and Red Sox are tied at the end of the season, a one-game playoff will be held to determine the winner of the American League East Division. The game will be played at a neutral site. If the game is tied after nine innings, extra innings will be played until a winner is determined.
The American League East
If the Yankees and Red Sox were to tie for first place at the end of the regular season, they would have a one-game playoff to determine who would win the American League East title and advance to the American League Division Series. If the teams are tied for first place after 162 games, they would play a 163rd game on October 8th at Fenway Park. The winner of that game would be declared the American League East champion and would advance to the ALDS, while the loser would miss the playoffs entirely. This system was put in place before the 2012 season.
The American League Wild Card
If the Yankees and Red Sox both finish the season with the same record, they will have a one-game playoff to determine who goes to the American League Division Series. The game will be played at a neutral site (usually the stadium of the team with the better record) and will be considered a regular season game for statistical purposes.
The playoffs would begin the following day, with the Yankees playing the Twins and the Red Sox playing the Indians.