With the MLB playoffs fast approaching, it is time to take a glimpse into some ideal scenarios that set up well as part of the larger conversation.

To be sure, nothing has been finalized with relation to seeding and no one has clinched a playoff berth yet. As such, we are going to keep things simple by only referring to teams that qualify for the playoffs as of game time Monday.

We will also keep the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds out of the conversation up front. We will instead focus on ideal scenarios for the American League and National League Wild Card Round and then focus on the championship series in each league.

After all, the very concept of “ideal matchup” means that there is a variable at play, such as not knowing who will end up advancing from the Wild Card Game to face the No. 1 seed.

And while the World Series is indeed part of the playoffs, we will not discuss ideal scenarios for it. That is another column altogether.

And this is not about popularity. The Los Angeles Angels and Los Angeles Dodgers are certainly a bigger draw nationally than the Kansas City Royals or Pittsburgh Pirates, but ratings have no place here.

This is an attempt to balance statistics with historical perspective. This is not a prediction or a guarantee.

Here are four ideal scenarios we would most love to see in the 2014 MLB playoffs.

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