MLB postseason 2021: How to watch White Sox vs. Astros, Red Sox vs. Rays on FS1

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Both American League Division Series start today. The Astros and White Sox are up first, followed by the Rays and Red Sox. The games are on FS1 and you don’t need cable to watch.

MLB postseason 2021
MLB postseason 2021

After two pressure-packed, one-game Wild Card affairs that saw the Red Sox eliminate the Yankees and the Dodgers walk it off against the Cardinals, Major League Baseball’s playoffs now settle into the more familiar postseason series format. The Division Series are best-of-five contests for the four remaining teams in each league; the two American League series get underway today. 

The Astros and White Sox get things started in Houston. First pitch was at 4:07 p.m. (1:07 p.m. PT) on FS1. Lance McCullers Jr. takes the mound for the Astros against Chicago’s Lance Lynn.

What does the playoff bracket look like? 

The Rays won the AL East, the White Sox won the AL Central and the Astros won the AL West. The Red Sox won the AL Wild Card game and now must face the top-seeded Rays, who finished the season with the best record in the American League.

The Braves won the NL East, the Brewers won the NL Central and the Giants won the NL West. The Giants won 107 games this season, tops in the National League. The Dodgers won their 107th game in the NL Wild Card game against the Cardinals and now head to San Francisco to face their longtime rivals. 

Here’s what baseball’s playoffs bracket looks like heading into the divisional round:

mlb-playoffs-bracket
MLB

What channels do I need to watch the MLB playoffs?

All of the National League playoff games are on TBS, and the American League games are on Fox, FS1 and MLB Network. The World Series will be broadcast on Fox.

What’s the schedule for the divisional round?

After Thursday’s two ALDS games, we get four playoff games on Friday. Saturday is a travel day for the AL teams, leaving us with a pair of NLDS games. It flips on Sunday, with the NL teams traveling and both AL teams playing. On Monday, we get four games again. 

Here’s the schedule through the weekend (all times ET):

Thursday, Oct. 7

  • White Sox vs. Astros, 4:07 p.m. on FS1
  • Red Sox vs. Rays, 8:07 p.m. on FS1

Friday, Oct. 8

  • White Sox vs. Astros, 2:07 p.m. on MLB Network
  • Braves vs. Brewers, 4:37 p.m. on TBS
  • Red Sox vs. Rays, 7:02 p.m. on FS1
  • Dodgers vs. Giants, 9:37 p.m. on TBS

Saturday, Oct. 9

  • Braves vs. Brewers, 5:07 p.m. on TBS
  • Dodgers vs. Giants, 9:07 p.m. on TBS

Sunday, Oct. 10

  • White Sox vs. Astros, 4:07 p.m. on MLB Network
  • Red Sox vs. Rays, 8:07 p.m. on FS1

You can see the full MLB postseason schedule here.

How can I watch the MLB playoffs without cable?

Three of the five major live TV streaming services offer all four channels — Fox, FS1, MLB Network and TBS — needed for the playoffs. You won’t miss a game with YouTube TV, Sling TV and DirecTV Stream (formerly AT&T TV), but not every service carries every local network, so check each one using the links below to make sure it carries Fox in your area.

If you live in an area with good reception, then you can watch the American League playoff games and World Series on Fox for free on over-the-air broadcast channels just by attaching an affordable (under $30) indoor antenna to nearly any TV.YouTube TVCarries Fox, FS 1, MLB Network and TBS

YouTube TV costs $65 a month and offers all four channels for postseason baseball. Plug in your ZIP code on its welcome page to see which local networks are available in your area.SEE AT YOUTUBE TVSling TVCarries Fox, FS1, MLB Network and TBS

Sling TV’s $35-a-month Blue plan includes Fox, FS1 and TBS. MLB Network is available as part of the Sports Extra add-on, which costs $11 a month on top of the Blue plan. You can see which local channels you get here.SEE AT SLING TVDirecTV StreamCarries Fox, FS1, MLB Network and TBS

DirecTV Stream’s cheapest, $70-a-month Plus package includes Fox, FS1 and TBS. You’ll need to move up to the $85-a-month Choice plan to get MLB Network. You can use its channel lookup tool to see which local channels are available in your area. SEE AT DIRECTV STREAMHulu with Live TVCarries Fox, FS1 and TBS

Hulu with Live TV costs $65 a month and carries Fox, FS1 and TBS, but not MLB Network. Click the “View all channels in your area” link at the bottom of its welcome page to see which local networks are available where you live.SEE AT HULU WITH LIVE TVFuboTVCarries Fox, FS1 and MLB Network

FuboTV costs $65 per month and carries Fox and FS1 but not TBS. You can add MLB Network for an extra $11 a month with the Sports Plus with NFL RedZone add-on.

Each live TV streaming service offers a free trial, allows you to cancel anytime and requires a solid internet connection.

Sources: CNET