Category Archives: Power Rankings

MLB Power Rankings – Week 14

With each passing day, the All Star Break is getting closer and the battles in each division are getting tighter. The National League Central and the American League East have some of the most talent in the sport and the chances of seeing each of those divisions get three playoff spots this postseason is high. In the middle of the 14th week of the season, what are the top five teams in the league?

Ranking (Last Week), Team, Record

1. (NR) Pittsburgh Pirates, 51-31

The Pirates were the first team to reach 50 wins this season and they are playing like a team convinced that they can win the NL Central and make it deep into October. As I mentioned yesterday, the Pirates a great team that can go far, but their offense leaves a lot to the imagination and could struggle when they face a stacked pitching rotation in the playoffs.

2. (4) Boston Red Sox, 51-34

The Red Sox have won 7-of-10 and have extended their lead in the AL East to 3.5 games ahead of the Baltimore Orioles. The Red Sox have one of the best offenses in all of baseball and have a stellar pitching staff to match. They have a +83 run differential, the best in the AL and will need to keep that number where it is if they want to stay at the top of the tough division.

3. (5) Atlanta Braves, 49-34

The Braves are surging after sweeping the division leading Arizona Diamondbacks over the weekend and overall, have won 6-of-7. Their offense seems to be coming around, which is something many pundits have questioned. Their pitching staff is talented and anchored by young studs Kris Medlen, Mike Minor and Julio Teheran.

4. (1) St. Louis Cardinals, 51-31

After dropping seven of their past 10 games, the Cardinals have dropped from the top spot on The First Pitch power rankings to the fourth spot. They have the best run differential in baseball at +108 but will need to see more consistent play if they want to keep up with the Pirates and stay ahead of the Cincinnati Reds.

5. (NR) Oakland Athletics, 49-35

The AL West leaders have won 6-of-10 and are just 0.5 games ahead of the Texas Rangers in the division. Bartolo Colon continues to impress fantasy players with his amazing play this season, going 11-2 with a 2.79 ERA and the offense has been paced by Josh Donaldson and Yoenis Céspedes.

Team on the rise: Los Angeles Angels

 

Who dropped out: Detroit Tigers and Cincinnati Reds

Week 13 MLB Power Rankings – Cardinals at the Top

061001_st_louis_cardinalsWith the All Star Break getting closer, we are getting closer to the midway point in the season. At this point in the season, one team stands out as the best in the league, but the top five is essentially a crap shoot. Who are the top five teams in the league right now and what team is trying to fight their way back to the top?

1. St. Louis Cardinals — 48-29

Overall, the Cardinals are one of the best all-around teams in the sport. They are second in the league in runs scored with 85 and batting average with .276, while also producing the third best on base percentage at .336. Offensively, they are led by Yadier Molina, Carlos Beltran, Allen Craig and Matt Holliday. The pitching staff is led by Adam Wainwright in the rotation and the ninth inning is controlled by the surprising Edward Mujica and his 2.20 ERA.

2. Detroit Tigers — 42-33

With a run differential of +76, the Tigers offense and pitching staff have worked well all season at getting big leads and holding onto them. With perennial Triple Crown candidate Miguel Cabrera beating up on pitchers all year and Justin Verlander doing what he does best, the Tigers are a team that nobody in the American League will want to face in October.

3. Cincinnati Reds — 45-33

The Reds sit 3.5 games behind the Cardinals in the National League Central but have all the makings of a championship contender. Offensively, first basemen Joey Votto leads the way along with help from Jay Bruce and Brandon Phillips, while Mike Leake has been unstoppable thus far. Leake leads the team in wins (7) and ERA (2.61) and is well on his way to the best season of his career.

4. Boston Red Sox — 46-33

The AL East leaders are tied with the Tigers for the AL lead in run differential at +76. As a team, they have scored the most runs in the league with 406, are second in OBP (.348), second in slugging percentage (.445) and third in batting average (.273). Offensively, the Red Sox are getting a lot of support from the ageless David Ortiz who leads the team in average, home runs, RBIs and OPS.

5. Atlanta Braves — 45-33

If you would have told me that the Braves would be this far ahead in the NL East and all three of their outfielders, Dan Uggla and Brian McCann were all batting less than .250, I would have called you crazy. All five of them are struggling, but they have been able to hold their league in the division despite poor play in the past two months. This is because of timely hits from Freddie Freeman, Chris Johnson, Jordan Schafer and Evan Gattis and great pitching from Mike Minor, Kris Medlen, Julio Teheran and Paul Maholm in the rotation and Craig Kimbrel in the ninth inning.

On their way up: Pittsburgh Pirates