30 MLB Team Power Rankings: Week 14

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Monday July.01/2013

The Bucs have won 9 straight games and now possess a record of 51 - 30.  You have to think that the club will put the nail in the coffin on its 20 year losing streak - with just needing to win 31 of their 81 games remaining.  Better yet, ESPN has them listed as a 88 Percent chance to make the playoffs for the first time since the 1992 season.  At the halfway point in the season, the Bucs have the best record in the MLB - and have reached #2 in our power rankings

The Bucs have won 9 straight games and now possess a record of 51 – 30. You have to think that the club will finally put the nail in the coffin on its 20 year losing streak – with just needing to win 31 of their 81 games remaining. Better yet, ESPN has them listed as a 88 Percent chance to make the playoffs for the first time since the 1992 season. At the halfway point in the season, the Bucs have the best record in the MLB – and have reached #2 in our power rankings.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

Another Week has come and gone in the MLB.

Week Stats Ending – June.29/2013

(MLB Reports) AL Hitter Of The Week -  Jason Kipnis (CLE – He reached base 24 times in the 8 games (14 hits, 9 Walks and 1 HBP) – with 3 HRs, 6 – 2B, 9 Runs and 11 RBI.  He hit .519 for the week).

Runners up were:  Miguel Cabrera (DET – OPS of 1.583, with 4 HRs and 7 RBI), Dustin Pedroia (BOS – .560 BA, 14 hits), and Raul Ibanez (SEA – OPS of 1.455 – 3 HRs and 5 RBI.)

(MLB Reports) AL Pitcher Of The WeekR.A. Dickey (TOR – 2 hit CG Shutout versus the Tampa Bay Rays.)

Runners up were: Koji Uehara (BOS – 3 Perfect Saves) and Joe Blanton LAA (1 – 0, with a 1.88 ERA in 2 GS).

The Blue Jays followed up their 11 game winning streak - by going 2 - 5 versus the Rays and 1st place Red Sox.  They still sit in the basement and are in danger of having that win streak mean nothing.

The Blue Jays followed up their 11 game winning streak – by going 2 – 5 versus the Rays and 1st place Red Sox. They still sit in the basement of the AL East – and are in danger of having that win streak mean nothing.

(MLB Reports) NL Hitter Of The Week – Chase Utley (PHI – 1.371 OPS based on 12 Hits (4 HRs and 5 RBI) and scored 10 Runs).

Runners up were: Michael Cuddyer (COL – extended his hitting streak to 27 games – OPS of 1.385, 4 HRs and 9 RBI) and Hanley Ramirez (LAD 1.409 OPS, 3 HRs and 8 RBI.)

(MLB Reports) NL Pitcher Of The Week – Matt Harvey (NYM) 1 – 0, with a 0.69 ERA in 2 Game Starts – with 17 SO in 13 IP.

Runners Up were: Adam Wainwright (STL) 1 – 1 , with a 1.15 ERA in 2 GS, and Jordan Zimmerman (WSH) 1 – 0, 0.71 WHIP.

Team Rankings (Last Week in Parenthesis) and Moving of spots up or down.

Standings as of June.30/2013

* Denotes Division Leaders

1.  Atlanta Braves 48 – 34* (4) +3:  After disposing of the NL West Division leading Arizona Diamondbacks, the Braves are ahead 6.5 Games in the NL East.  They have the best home record in the Major Leagues at 28 – 11.  They have 42 more games at home compared to 38 more on the road.

The best part is they play a heavy dose of the NL East down the stretch.  Jason Heyward is finally starting to hit.  Signs also point to Justin Upton breaking out of his 2 month swoon. 

Brian McCann is a solid offensive contributor – and Freddie Freeman would probably be in NL MVP contention if he didn’t miss games earlier in the year.

2.  Pittsburgh Pirates 51 – 30* (7) +6:  This team has won 9 games in a row, own the best record in baseball – and are still waiting for a month-long MVP type like performance like Andrew McCutchen usually delivers.

They are deep in pitching, get timely hits – and adding veterans like Brandon Inge and Russell Martin will stabilize the clubhouse.  Pedro Alvarez with a 12 game hitting streak that just ended.  Nail down Bullpen is also a factor here.

3.  Boston Red Sox 50 – 34* (5) +2:  a 5 – 1 week has culminated in them rising 2 spots.  They have buried the Toronto Blue Jays again.  The club is able to do this when they AL Cy Young contender is recovering from injury.  Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury make the offense work.

David Ortiz is still a premier RBI men, then you have gamers like Mike Napoli and Shane Victorino

Throw in the performances of youngsters of Jose Iglesias (could be a quiet AL Rookie of The Year Candidate with a .409 BA in 132 AB) – and Daniel Nava (10 HRs and 49 RBI) – and you are talking about a deep team.

4.  Texas Rangers 48 – 34* (3) -1:  The team has its Starting Pitchers all on the mend – and potentially ready to give a great boost in: Alexi Ogando, Colby Lewis and Matt Harrison potentially coming back in the second half to spell youngsters Justin Grimm, Nick Tepesch and Martin Perez

Ian Kinsler and Mitch Moreland showed how much they have meant to the team since being re-inserted in the lineup.  The battle versus Oakland will be for a Division Title – and the loser should make the 1st Wild Card Spot.

5.  St. Louis Cardinals 49 – 32 (2) – 3:  The Cards should be in great position to make a playoff spot either way. 

Oddsmakers would have them ahead of the Pirates right now – as ESPN suggest with their 95.4 % chance to make the playoffs – compared to a 88.4 % chance for the Bucs, yet I am not of this mindset entirely.

The club has lost too many significant pieces in the last 2 years: Albert Pujols, Chris Carpenter, Tony La Russa, Kyle Lohse, Dave Duncan, Mark McGwire, Rafael Furcal, Jaime Garcia, Lance Berkman and Jason Motte

While they have incredible replacements in Matt Carpenter, Shelby Miller, Carlos Beltran, Matt Adams and Trevor Rosenthal, you have to think they may see a slow period of adjustment at some point.

6.  Oakland Athletics 48 – 35 (6) Even:  The A’s beat the Cardinals in statement series over the weekend.  The team is a pure definition of a bunch of guys all pulling together in the same direction. 

Different heroes every night.  Bartolo Colon is 11 – 2, with under a 3.00 ERA, and any other year he would be the #1 choice to start the ALL – Star Game if it weren’t for Max Scherzer.

7.  Detroit Tigers* 43 – 37 (1) -6:  This team is wallowing in an just above average record despite having the best hitter and Starting Pitcher in the game right now.  Their mediocre play in the last few months has let the Indians tie them for the AL Central right now.

They did this same routine last year – and that was with their Bullpen pitching way better in the regular season.  Miguel Cabrera is chasing another Triple Crown with video game numbers.  He is on pace for 50+ HRs and 165 RBI – while batting .373.

8.  Cincinnati Reds 46 – 36 (8)  Even:  This team is not the greatest on the road, plus they are not the greatest versus +.500 teams, but they are deep in offense and Starting Pitching.  It is a good thing they have Tony Cingrani around with Johnny Cueto spending so much time on the DL this season.

They should be able to beat up on Milwaukee and Chicago down the stretch.  3 NL Central teams in the top 8 – and all should make the playoffs in my view.

9.  Baltimore Orioles 47 – 36 (11) +2:  Chris Davis is for real folks.  Guys that hit 31 HRs in the teams 1st 83 Games generally are pretty good.  They have clubbed a league best  115 HRs.  Manny Machado is still on base to hit for the single season record in Doubles.

Adam Jones is on pace to improve for the 5th straight years  If the Orioles end up picking up a Starting Pitcher ace at the Deadline, I would say they would become the best team in the AL East.

Here is hoping that Brian Roberts can stay away from the injury bug to enjoy this teams success.

10.  Arizona Diamondbacks* 42 – 39 (9) -1:  The Snakes have had a tough week in being swept by the Atlanta Braves – and now see all 4 other other NL West teams within 4 games of them.  They are scrappy, have the most home games (44) to road games (37) left in the Division.

Lets hope their is no Innings limit for Patrick Corbin.  Welcoming back Aaron Hill to the lineup should help. J.J. Putz should also help bring the Bullpen back into its natural depth chart. 

Gerardo Parra should receive some ALL- Star consideration with his .301 BA and 97 Hits.

11.  Cleveland Indians 44 – 38* (16) +5:  The Indians have won 4 in a row and have pulled even with the Detroit Tigers.  The AL Central should be the easiest Division in the AL to make up ground. 

Kansas City is not playing great, and Minnesota and Chicago should quickly go into operation shutdown mode for the year by trading away several years.

The Tribe has 42 of its 80 games remaining at home where they are 24 – 15.  Jason Kipnis is turning into deadly Second Baseman threat.  The guy is on pace to  hit 25 HRs, drive in 100 RBI – and steal 35 Bags this year. 

Ubaldo Jimenez is 4 – 2, with a 3.67 ERA in his last 10 Game Starts.

12.  Tampa Bay Rays 43 – 39 (14) +2:  The Rays should have called up Wil Myers earlier.  He is providing the type of offense they missed when they were playing Sam Fuld and Sean Rodriguez in LF (Yikes).

They need still need David Price to come back and be the dominant ace.  The club also should have brought up Chris Archer a lot earlier too.

Jeremy Hellickson is rounding into form – and Fernando Rodney is tightening up his clown act – fanning 18 hitters in the last 11 IP – while not allowing a run in his last 6 outings. 

Teams have learned to pitch around Evan Longoria too – he has 8 Walks in the last 6 Games.

13.  Washington Nationals 41 – 40 (13) Even:  This team must win the head to head battles with the Atlanta Braves when they play.  Having said that, with the Reds recent struggles, this team could conceivably take a Wild Card Spot even if they don’t catch the Tomahawk Choppers.

The 1 – 3 pitchers (Jordan Zimmermann, Stephen Strasburg and Gio Gonzalez) are looking like the 2012 versions of themselves.

Anthony Rendon showing up at 2B has been the catalyst behind the clubs recent offensive surge.  I project this team to start skyrocketing up the standings at any time.

14. San Francisco Giants 39 – 42 (12) -2:  Losing Angel Pagan for the season is a crushing blow.  Brian Sabean will find a suitable replacement I am sure.  Matt Cain is beginning to pile up Quality Starts. 

Buster Posey looks to have another awesome second half.  Why ESPN favors the Colorado Rockies as the 2nd best team in the NL West is beyond me??

This team has championship pedigree, a knack for Post All Star Game win streaks, and they have 42 out of their remaining 81 at home – where they are 24 – 15 this season.

They also played one of the tougher June schedule – facing the red-hot Jays earlier, Pirates, Diamondbacks, Braves and Cardinals, while they found a hot Dodgers and Padres team in the last week. 

Finally, they lost to a June winning month club (Marlins).  In fact, other than the Rockies and DBacks, their June opponents all had winning 30 day stretches.

15.  New York Yankees 42 – 38 (10) -5:  The Zoilo Almonte magic has seemed to wear off the Bronx Bombers.  These guys are in some serious trouble.  They should be the 1st team in on the Trade Deadline acquisitions. 

They need to take some more trade risks with Mark Teixeira out for the year!

How about picking up a guy like Adam Dunn  – and maybe ask about the availability of Jeff Keppinger (who can play any INF position) and Alexei Ramirez (another Utility Infielder)? I will write a blog about this. 

CC Sabathia throws 5 no hit innings or so before Baltimore blows him up.  Don’t stop now at chasing bad money, you have plenty of time to be mediocre past 2013!

16.  LA Dodgers 38 – 43 (23) +7:  Don’t look now, but the Dodgers are only 4 games out of the NL West – and they have on fire players like Yasiel Puig, Hanley Ramirez, Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke

They are 8 – 2 in their last 10 – and get to play the majority of their games against weaker NL West teams.

They unfortunately have only 35 of their 81 remaining games at home and 46 on the road.  Matt Kemp will have to be his former self at some point for this team to make the playoffs.  I mean Puig can’t hit .440 the rest of the year right??

 17.  LA Angels 39 – 43 (22) +5:  The club has won 6 games in a row – and everyone seems to be contributing now.  With all of the talent they possess on their roster, why can’t this team come back and challenge for a Wild Card Spot?

Josh Hamilton has reached base 13 times in his last 6 Games. He must be seeing the ball better – as his 4 Walks in that time frame indicates.

Erick Aybar and Mike Trout are starting to heat up.  Joe Blanton actually has pitched decently of late.  He has Quality Starts in 6 of his last 7 Game Starts.  It would behoove the team – if management could pull the trigger on some Bullpen and Starting Pitching help.

18.  Colorado Rockies 41 – 42 (17) -1:  Again, how can the Oddsmakers think the Rockies have a better chance to make the playoffs – than the SF Giants when Troy Tulowitzki is out until at least August? 

They also only have 37 remaining home games – compared to 42 matches on the road.

Michael Cuddyer is playing the best baseball of his career with this 27 Game Hitting Streak.  The guy has hit safely in 53 out of his 59 Game Starts.  Carlos Gonzalez is not the same hitter in the lineup with Tulowitzki.

19.  Kansas City Royals 38 – 41 (20) +1:  The Kansas City team has shown signs of an improving offense.  Mike Moustakas hit .348 for the week and Eric Hosmer hit 3 HRs over the weekend. 

Billy Butler hit .391 for the week and finally Salvador Perez clubbed at a 450 BA clip.

At 4.5 Games behind both of the Cleveland Indians and Detroit Tigers, they are officially in this thing.  They finally had enough of Jeff Francouer (thank god).  The pitching continues to be carrying the club.

20.  San Diego Padres 40 – 42 (18) -2:  They had a 2 – 4 week and are really struggling at the plate.  The loss of Everth Cabrera to injury has been a key blow.  They should try to trade the likes of Carlos Quentin and Chase Headley (likely not worth the re-sign.)

21.  Toronto Blue Jays 40 – 41 (15) -6:  In a crucial AL East week for them, they went 2 – 5.  This was after their 11 Game winning streak.

  It doesn’t get easier for the Canadian club, next up are the Tigers for a 4 game series, then a slight breather – with a 3 game stanza versus the Twins.

The Jays then have a grueling 6 game road trip at Cleveland (3) and Baltimore (3) to end up at the ALL – Star Game.  Tough schedule.  Jose Reyes back, but has not attempted to steal a base yet.

22.  Philadelphia Phillies 39 – 44 (18) -4:  They just pulverized the Dodgers Friday (16 – 1) – before dropping the last two games of the series.  They have to look at themselves in the mirror soon to ask, whether or not they are a playoff contender?

23.  Minnesota Twins 36 – 42 (21) -2:  The Twinkies are only 6 Games out in the AL Central, however they must trade Josh Willingham and Justin Morneau before the deadline.

24.  Seattle Mariners 35 – 47 (24) Even:  This team might just stay in the #24 slot the rest of the year.  They will likely win about 75 games.

25.  Chicago White Sox 32 – 47 (25) Even:  Let the Firesale begin!

26.  New York Mets  33 – 45 (26) Even:  Matt Harvey Starting in the ALL – Star Game will be the best highlight of the season.

27.  Chicago Cubs  35 – 45 (28) -1:  Don’t win too many games fellas – you want that high draft pick.  Matt Garza keeps upping his trade value.

28.  Milwaukee Brewers 32 – 48 (27) -1:  It is not too inconceivable for this club to end up with the worst record in baseball the way they are going.  They will be the speedbag for the NL Central contenders the rest of the season.

29.  Miami Marlins 29 – 51 (30) +1: With entering the month of June at 14 – 40, it could have bee a historically bad year for the Miami club. A 15 – 10 month has the city maybe looking forward to a great future. 

Nathan Eovaldi and Jacob Turner have joined Jose Fernandez as impressive young arms.  Giancarlo Stanton and Logan Morrison have helped with the lineup since their return.

30.  Houston Astros 30 – 52 (29) -1: The offense has cooled down.  Keep Bud Norris healthy for trading – and see if anyone wants to take a flyer on Erik Bedard.

The Braves are back atop the MLB Reports Rankings this week.  We picked them because they have the most solid chance to win their Division based on the lead they currently possess, and should only have to worry about the Nats running them down.  I still feel they also have not reached their own potential yet either

The Braves are back atop the MLB Reports Rankings this week. We picked them because they have the most solid chance to win their Division based on the lead they currently possess, and should only have to worry about the Nats running them down. I still feel they also have not reached their own potential yet either.  Heyward is starting to rake, Freeman could be an NL MVP candidate by the year’s end, and they might even see a Dan Uggla like hot streak coming soon.  The National League is also an easier league to play in right now.

*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com and their partners***

Chuck Booth - Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner and author of the Fastest 30 Ballgames:   To learn more about my  “The Fastest 30 Ballgames Book” and how to purchase it, click here .

You can also follow my Guinness Book of World Record Successful Bid to see all 30 MLB Park in 23 Days - click here.  I am happy to be part of such an awesome Magazine-Style Baseball Website and am looking forward to talking to all of the fans of the MLB.  You can reach me on Twitter here

Ballpark Chasers Steve Fekete (left) and MLB Reports Owner (Right)

Ballpark Chasers Steve Fekete (left) and MLB Reports Owner Chuck Booth(Right).

Please e-mail me  at: mlbreports@gmail.com with any questions and feedback. To subscribe to our website and have the Daily Reports sent directly to your inbox, click here and follow the link at the top of our homepage.

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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 June 30, 2013, in MLB Teams: Articles and Analysis, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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