MLB Reports Monthly Power Rankings: August 2012

Monday August.6/2012

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer and @chuckbooth3024 on twitter)- It has been a crazy month in which teams have stockpiled some heavy talent at the trade deadline to get ready for the playoffs.  Amongst the biggest gainers for the rankings this month were: the Athletics, Reds, Braves, Tigers, Dodgers (because of the deals) and Mariners while the Mets, Red Sox, Indians and Royals saw brutal months all but seal their playoff fates.  I do think that Boston has a punchers chance but that all is dependent on David Ortiz returning to the lineup swiftly.  The power of the best teams is definitely leaning to the National League right now where several teams are playing great baseball.  With one-third of the season left we are all in for a treat as baseball fans.

I will have one more regular season Power Rankings month of September (to be posted on Labor Day Weekend,)  before I also provide a playoff style ranking of the 1-10 seeds right before the Wild Card Teams play the play in game.  It certainly has been awesome to follow how the trade deadline has effected the Monthly Rankings this time around.  I think it is safe to say that this years deadline provided more interest and following-from even the casual fan more than any other year before.  I also believe that the Non-Waiver Trade Deadline is now the best Trade Deadline in all of sports.  Social Media has a lot to do with this but so does parity.  The 2nd Wild Card spot has also created more teams willing to trade prospects in lieu of going for it.

Standings taken before play Sunday Aug.05/2012

Cincinnati have won 15 out of their last 16 games and are 22-5 since the last Power Rankings. The Majority of this was done without Votto. They soared up 5 spots to take the best ranking spot of August.

Aug Power Rankings-Last Month Rank in Parenthesis

1.  Cincinnati Reds 66-41 (6) The Reds have blitzed the competition of late.  I think it was brilliant for them to pick up Broxton to help the bullpen out.  Aroldis Chapman has struck out 100 in only 53.2 IP.  He is having one of the greatest statistical years ever for a closer.  He had 16 saves and struck out 34 men in 16.2 IP in the last month.  Between Mat Latos, Johnny Cueto, Homer Bailey and Bronson Arroyo they are a combined 40-20 this year.  Ryan Ludwick has hit .316 with 8 HRs and 24 RBI in the month.  Brandon Phillips has hit .341 with 16 RBI and 15 runs scored since Joey Votto went down.  Even Scott Rolen has .333 since the All-Star Break.

2.  Washington Nationals 64-43 (5)  Washington has rebounded to go 19-11 in the last month.  They have been fighting off the surging Braves with Ryan Zimmerman sporting a .385 Avg with 8 HRs and 19 RBI over the last 30 days.  Right behind Zim is Adam LaRoche -who has hit 6 HRs and driven in 12 RBI over his last 10 games with a .421 Average.  Mike Morse also hit .321 for the month and drove in 17 RBI.  Jordan Zimmerman went 3-0 in the month with a 1.75 ERA-while dropping his overall ERA to 2.45 (2nd overall in the NL to Voglesong of the Giants.) Stephen Strasburg and Gio Gonzalez are still 2nd and 4th respectively in Strikeouts.

3.   New York Yankees 62-44 (2) You knew it was only a matter of time before Mark Teixeira would hit this year.  He clubbed 6 HRs and drove in 25 RBI for the 23 games he played in since the last rankings.  Captain Derek Jeter has rebounded with a .347 Avg and 35 hits during his last 25 games.  The team has only gone 14-14 in their last 28 games.  The pitching has been steady with their top 4 starters having 10 wins each.  David Robertson has settled back down and Rafael Soriano has converted 26 out of 28 Save opportunities this year.

4.  Texas Rangers 63-43 (1) Texas has struggled to a 13-13 record in the last 30 days while Josh Hamilton has hit sub .200 since the ALL-Star Game while he fights his tobacco addiction.  He has rebounded this week with 10 RBI in his last 6 games.  David Murphy hit .365 for the month while Nelson Cruz bashed 6 HRs and drove in 16 RBI.  Mike Napoli smacked 5 HRs in only 57 AB.  Scott Feldman went 4-0 with a 1.09 ERA for the month.  Yu Darvish is struggling with a 1-2 record in his last 4 starts with a 7.68 ERA.

Tim Hudson has gone 5-0 in his last 6 starts to help the Braves get back into the NL East race. I think the Braves will probably catch the Nationals if Hudson throws the way he has been lately.

5.  Atlanta Braves 61-46 (12) Freddie Freeman hit .341 with 17 RBI for the month and Chipper Jones added a .315 Average.  Brian McCann went beserk for a few games before and after the ALL-Star Game and has hit 8 HRs for the last 20 games.  Craig Kimbrel has converted 31 out of 33 saves this year-and has fanned 73 batters in 42 innings.

6.  Pittsburgh Pirates 60-46 (9)  Pittsburgh had their 3rd straight month stretch in which they went 16-10.  That makes them 48-30 in their last 78 games since starting the 1st month 12-16.  Besides Andrew McCutchen (who you can see at the end of the article) Neil Walker hit .333 with 6 HRs in and 19 RBI in this latest month.  Catcher Michael McKenry has hit .405 with 5 HRs and 11 RBI in his last 14 games.  Garrett Jones is slugging .514 for the year now.  A.J. Burnett was 4-1 with a 2.17 ERA and a 0.86 WHIP for the month.  Burnett is now 13-3 with a 3.27 ERA  for the year-and has 102 SO compared to just 37 BB.  Nice comeback season!

7.   LA Angels 58-50 (4) Mike Trout was at it again hitting .350 for the month with 17 XBH (9 HRs 6-2B and 2-3B).  Trout scored an MLB best 32 runs and had 19 RBI too.  He also stole 7 bases.   The team is only 13-15 in its last 28 games.  Albert Pujols hit 4 HRs in 2 games last week and has led the MLB with 11 HRs and 27 RBI for the last 30 days.  He has his season average up to .289 and should finish with his usual 40 HRs and 120 RBI again with a .300 Avg.  After 6 weeks into this year, that did not look possible.  Torii Hunter hit .372 in the last month.  Jered Weaver went 5-0 with a 2.70 ERA while the rest of the club went 8-15.  Dan Haren did have a 2.25 ERA for the month.

8.  LA Dodgers 58-50 (15)  This ranking may seem generous to some considering the Dodgers only went 14-13 for the month, but it is Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier coming back to the lineup.  It is also acquiring Hanley Ramirez, Joe Blanton and Shane VictorinoA.J.Ellis continues his surprise season with 4 HRs in his last 11 games.  Chad Billingsley went 3-1 with a 2.05 ERA for the month.  Look for the Dodgers to surge up the National League in their last 54 games.

Buster Posey has quietly been smashing the ball at an MVP caliber clip and has been the best player in the MLB over the last 30 days with a .417 AVG 6 HRs and 25 RBI in 22 Games. Buster has put himself into the running for MVP.

9.  San Francisco Giants 58-49 (3)  Melky Cabrera   and his AVG by the Month Apr-.300, May .427 June .304 July .355 and Aug .357. He is hitting .352 for the year and is second only to McCutchen’s .369 for the NL lead this year.  The team went just 13-14 over the last month and no one else is doing anything special.  Hunter Pence was brought in for some offense, but he has struggled himself since the ALL-Star game hitting under .200. Ryan Vogelsong does lead the NL in ERA at 2.38.

10. Detroit Tigers 58-49 (16)  Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera are starting to cook.  They hit .335 between them with 13 HRs and 37 RBI for the month in leading the Tigers to an 18-9 record.  Austin Jackson is hitting .316 with 65 runs in 85 games this yearas a by-product of the #3 and #4 hitters doing the damage after him.  Doug Fister is 5-1 with a 2.20 ERA in his last 6 starts.

11. Chicago White Sox 58-48 (11) Alex Rios continued his surprise season by hitting .319 with 7 HRs and 22 RBI for the month-and is hitting over .350 since the end of April.  Alexei Ramirez hit .315 for the month.  Kevin Youkilis hit 6 HRs, drove in 15 RBI and has scored 17 runs in his last 23 games.  Adam Dunn hit .198 with 6 HRs and 14 RBI for the month.  Chris Sale is 12-3 for the year with a 2.61 ERA (2nd best in the AL)

12. St. Louis Cardinals 58-49 (13)  St. Louis is making another charge in the second half by going 16-11 in their last 27 games.  Carlos Beltran and Matt Holliday are 1-2 in the NL RBI race with 77 and 76 respectively.  Holliday hit .337 with 7 HRs and 20 RBI for the Month.  Nobody was hotter than David Freese who hit .412.  Yadier Molina continued  his career year by hitting .351 for the month-and now has totals of .314 with 16 HRs and 54 RBI for the year.  Lance Lynn had a bounce back month and Kyle Lohse went 3-0 to raise his season win record to 11-2 with a 2.91 ERA.

13. Oakland Athletics 58-49 (24)  The Athletics are proving the ‘New Money Ball’ version is all about hitting.  They are 32-13 in their last 45 games and are contending for a playoff spot after a 6 year hiatus.  (The MLB Reports) favorite team to write about the last 6 weeks has been riding Cespedes and Chris Carter.  Carter has 9 HRs and 18 RBI in his first 25 games this year (77 AB.)  This is a .636 slugging pctg.  Brandon Inge has 11 HRs and 49 RBI in 67 games for Oakland this year (260 AB).  Brandon Moss has 11 HRs in 130 AB.  Seth Smith has 11 HRs in 279 AB.  Johnny Gomes has 11 HRs in 191 AB.  That is why they are winning.  That and the A’s have had 13 walk off hits at the Coliseum too.

How important is Cespedes to The A’s Lineup? They are 46-29 with him in and 12-20 without him. He is the biggest reason the team has soared into the playoff race and currently holds down the 1st Wild Card Spot. If the season ended today, the Angels would be headed to Oakland for the game.

14. Tampa Bay Rays 56-51 (10)  Luke Scott has rebounded from his 0-40 slump to hit .385 with 3 HRs and 10 RBI in his last 10 games.  Jeff Keppinger has done a nice job hitting .325 in the last month.  The Rays offense is preventing them from winning games and that is why these 2 guys barely made the Monthly Rankings.  David Price with another great month going 3-0 with a 1.91 ERA and 36 SO in 29 IP.  At 14-4, he is dueling with Jered Weaver and Justin Verlander for Cy Young contention.  Where did Fernando Rodney come from this year?  A 0.72 ERA-and has 32 Saves in 33 chances.

15. Baltimore Orioles 56-51 (14)  Nick Markakis has come alive with a .358 average including 35 hits in the last 30 days.  Adam Jones is still grinding out the ABs this year and should hit 35 HRs and score close to 100 runs.  If anyone else was hitting in front of him, he may have challenged 100 RBI too.  Chris Davis with 16 HR and 55 RBI in 90 Games has done an adequate job.  The bullpen has been fantastic for the O’s this year, especially Pedro Strop who is 4-2 with a 1.31 ERA.  Wie-Yin Chen has had a great year with a 10-6 record with a 3.46 ERA so far.

16. Arizona Diamondbacks 55-52 (19) Miguel Montero led the charge offensively last month with a .333 AVG and 5 HRs and 21 RBI in 21 games.  Arizona went 16-12 to climb back into the playoff race.  Aaron Hill hit .309 for the month after his NL hitter of the Month for June.  Willie Bloomquist Gerardo Parra, Paul Goldschmidt and Justin Upton all hit near .300 or better as well.  Jason Kubel also raked 9 HRs and 15 RBI to give him 23 HRs and 73 RBI on the year.  The starters went 16-8 for the month including Ian Kennedy going 4-1.

17. Boston Red Sox 53-55 (8) As we call it at the Reports, ‘The Curse of the Youk.”  Boston went 11-16 for the month and lost their DH/MVP David Ortiz.  Adrian Gonzalez is starting to catch fire hitting .396 with 19 RBI in his last 24 games.  Cody Ross hit 3-3 run HRs in two games but has been cold on either side of that.  Clay Buccholz has a 1.98 ERA in his last 5 starts.  Josh Beckett and Jon Lester have combined to go 1-7 with giving up 46 Earned runs in their last 53  innings for a 7.81 ERA.

18. Toronto Blue Jays 52-55 (18) Edwin Encarnacion led the club with 6 HRs and 16 RBI for the month.  Losing Bautista hurt the Canadian club to a record of 12-15 in their last 27 games.  Adam Lind was just starting to hit when he went on the DL.  Who knew the pitching savior was going to be Carlos Villanueva? Looking at these monthly stats, the Jays are lucky to have been only 3 games under .500 for the month!

19.  New York Mets 53-55 (7) The Mets are wasting brilliant seasons from R.A. Dickey (14-3 2.82 ERA and 156 SO ) and David Wright (.328 16 HRs 72 RBI 32 2B) byway of  their bullpen pitchers.  The team has blown 17 save opportunities and are 12-21 with a 4.91 ERA as a collective relief unit.  Daniel Murphy hit .369 for the month and is now at .307 for the year.  Andres Torres has hit .323 in his last 20 games.  Ruben Tejada is still hitting .321 this year  and Scott Hairston has 14 HRs and 44 RBI in just 243 AB this capaign.  The problem is all on the bullpen.  The club went 9-18 for the month and dropped 12 spots on the rankings list.

20. Seattle Mariners 51-58 (26)  The Mariners have played surprisingly well over the last few weeks sporting an 16-11 record.  Felix Hernandez is 4-0 with a 1.13 ERA in his last 6 starts.  Jason Vargas has put a 12-7 record, with a 3.71 ERA together as of this date, including 5-0 in the last month.  Blake Beavan is 4-0 in his last 4 starts with a 3.18 ERA.  Jesus Montero has been the best M’s hitter with a .315 AVG for the last 30 days.  Kyle Seager has 63 RBI on the year.

21. Cleveland Indians 50-57 (17)  Cleveland has gone 10-18 in the last month to drop out of playoff contention.  Michael Brantley hit .310 for the month but with little power.  Carlos Santana hit 6 HRs with 17 RBI to pace the offensive attack.  Shin-Soo Choo should have a chance to score 100 runs this season.  Travis Hafner only hit .193 for the month.  Derek Lowe and Ubaldo Jimenez have officially derailed from good starts to the year.  Sorry Tribe Fans.

22. Philadelphia Phillies 48-59 (22) The Phillies welcomed back Chase Utley and Ryan Howard in the last month, but have failed to make up any ground going 12-13 in  the last 25 games.  They then traded Shane Victorino, Joe Blanton and Hunter Pence.  It is a shame to see Carlos Ruiz hurt now as his .335 14 HRs and 58 RBI bat will be missed. Cliff Lee has started to look better recently with a 2.89 ERA in his last 4 starts.

23. Miami Marlins 49-59 (21)  Carlos Lee had 19 RBI in the last month for the struggling Marlins.  Miami went 11-17 for the month and continues to miss Giancarlo StantonJose Reyes batted .346 for the month and scored 18 runs, stole 7 bases, collected 36 hits (including 14 for extra bases).  Justin Ruggiano has started his 1st 150 AB this season by hitting .350.  The best thing about 2012 is that Josh Johnson is still improving for the club.  He is 7-7 with a 3.85 ERA for the campaign.

Ryan Braun has been one of the most consistent hitters in MLB again this year and is one of 3 National Leaguers to sport an OPS of over 1.00 for the year. It is too bad the Brewers have wasted his production.

24. Milwaukee Brewers 48-58 (23)  Along with Braun, Aramis Ramirez has a hot bat.  He has hit .368 with 17 RBI and 32 hits in his last 22 games.  Corey Hart hit .333 with 17 RBI for the month as well.  Rickie Weeks hit 6 HRs and looks to have finally broken his year long slump.  Mike Fiers is off to a great beginning as a starter with a 5-4 record and a 1.88 ERA, (including a 1.07 ERA in his last 4 starts.)  The Brewers have gone 11-16 in their last 27 games.

25. Minnesota Twins 47-60 (25)  I am glad to report that Justin Morneau is finally starting to look like his old self.  He had 32 hits in his last 22 games to carry a .364 AVG and plate 15 runs.  Ben Revere hit .333 for the month.  Josh Willingham hit 9 HRs and knocked in 21 RBI to keep up with his torrid offensive year.  Joe Mauer is starting to walk like crazy again and scored 19 runs.  Denard Span hit .330 with 15 runs.  The offense has looked good of late.  The pitching has plagued this team.  Ever since Scott Diamond was hurt, the other starters have been atrocious.  Sam Deduno has given the Twins fans some faith starting out his career 3-0 since his call up.

26. Kansas City Royals 44-62 (20)  Kansas City has the same problem as the Twins: All hitting and no starting pitching! They are hitting nearly .270 as a team.  The club went 8-20 for the month.  It will be another losing season for the franchise.  Billy Butler and Alex Gordon both hit .343 to lead the team in their past 25 games.  Gordon has climbed up to .291 overall.  Lorenzo Cain has hit .325 with 17 RBI in his last 22 games.  The Royals are last in the AL in Team walks and this brings down the steam of the teams average a little.

27. San Diego Padres 45-64 (29)  The Padres are actually 14-14 in their last 28 games.  Catcher Yasmani Grandal is impressing the club to kick off his career with a .312 AVG and 5 HRs and 15 RBI in his first 24 MLB Games.  Too bad he is on the 15 DAY DL now.  Chase Headley has 6 HRs and 16 RBI during his last 25 games.  Huston Street has converted 18 straight saves this year and sports a 0.84 ERA for the year.

28. Chicago Cubs 43-62 (28)  Anthony Rizzo had bashed the ball around pretty good to start his career.  He has a .300 average with 5 HRs and 14 RBI in his last 23 games.  Alfonso Soriano is on pace to hit 30 HRs.  The Cubs are 13-13 in their last 26 games.   The team traded away Ryan Dempster and Paul Maholm, (guys that were the best chuckers in the last month.)

29. Colorado Rockies 38-67 (30)  Who is Josh Rutledge exactly?  He has used the Coors Field Advantage to hit .346 with 6 HRs and 15 RBI in his first 20 games.  He has played 15 of his first 21 games at home though.  Dexter Fowler and Jordan Pacheco rode the thin air to post .300 averages for the month.  Colorado has gone 8-18 in the last 26 games.

30. Houston Astros 36-72 (27)  Oh Boy, the Stros have traded every player they could have to then go 4-24 in their last 28 games.  The club is all about Jose Altuve moving forward.  Just kidding, they have other players too.  I just think the ‘Jose Altuve’ measurement is still the coolest thing ever at www.howmanyaltuves.com

Previous Month MLB Reports Rankings:

July 

 June

May

Andrew McCutchen has hammered  his way onto the NL MVP scene with gigantic power numbers over the last 30 days and a.414 Average.  This has lifted his overall season mark to .369. The Pirates Slugger is in the top 5 in most offensive categories and has an outside chance at the Triple Crown.

                                                                                                                 

 ***Thank you to our Lead Baseball Writer- Chuck Booth for preparing today’s feature on MLB reports.  To learn more about “The Fastest 30 Ballgames” and Chuck Booth, you can follow Chuck on Twitter (@ChuckBooth3024) and you can also follow Chuck’s website for his Guinness Book of World Record Bid to see all 30 MLB Park in 23 days click here  or on the 30 MLB Parks in 23 days GWR tracker at the Reports click here. To Purchase or read about “The Fastest 30 Ballgames Book, ” please click here ***

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About chuckbooth3023

I played competitive baseball until 18 years old and had offers to play NCAA Division 1 University Baseball at Liberty University. Post-concussion symptoms from previous football and baseball head injuries forced me to retire by age 19. After two nearly made World Record Attempts in 2008, I set a New World Record by visiting all 30 MLB Parks (from 1st to last pitch) in only 24 Calendar Days in the summer 0f 2009. In April of 2012, I established yet another new GWR by visiting all 30 Parks in only 23 Calendar Days! You can see the full schedule at the page of the www.mlbreports.com/gwr-tracker

Posted on August 6, 2012, in The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Love to see the Reds on top!

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