RoxPile Power Rankings – Week of June 6
1. New York Yankees (33-24, 1st place in the AL East)
The Yankees are hot. There’s no two ways about it. After winning six of seven, and going 7-3 over their past 10, they are, simply put, the best team in baseball.
2. Philadelphia Phillies (35-24, 1st place in the NL East)
The Phillies are hot on the tail of the Yankees, though they have stumbled a bit of late. They’ve gone 5-5 in their previous 10 games, but haven’t scored runs like they can.
3. St. Louis Cardinals (36-25, 1st place in the NL Central)
The Cardinals are looking like the Redbirds of old, and Albert Pujols is back to his old self. After walking off the Cubs twice in two days, the Cards have won three straight and are the first team in Major League Baseball to 300 runs for the season.
4. Cleveland Indians (33-24, 1st place in the AL Central)
A terrible week for the Indians have left them in slight danger of losing their grip on the AL Central, though they still hold a 2.5 game lead on the White Sox and are still one of the best in the league.
5. Texas Rangers (34-26, 1st place in the AL West)
The Rangers are finding their stroke. After sweeping the Indians in four games by a 24-6 margin, the Rangers look like the clear favorite in the AL West, but only if they can stave off the Mariners (?).
6. Boston Red Sox (33-26, 1GB in the AL East)
The Red Sox are riding high because of… David Ortiz? He’s on an absolute tear. Recently, he’s hitting better (.325, 13HR, 30RBI) than Carl Crawford (.248, 5HR, 29RBI) and Adrian Gonzalez (.339, 12HR, 50RBI), and though the team got swept by the White Sox, they’re still producing at a scary rate.
7. Milwaukee Brewers (33-26, 2GB in the NL Central)
The Brewers are looking more and more like the contenders we thought they would be. The pitching staff is only allowing 3 runs a game, and when you have power hitters like Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder, scoring runs isn’t that hard.
8. San Francisco Giants (33-26, 1st place in the NL West)
The Giants have been slowed a bit by the Diamondbacks, but Aubrey Huff hit half of his season’s home runs against the Cardinals, and the Giants are cruising with a series win over the Rockies at home.
9. Tampa Bay Rays (30-29, 4GB in the AL East)
A rough 10 days has the Rays just one game over .500, but they’re still trying keeping pace in the AL East, and that’s not easy to do.
10. Florida Marlins (31-26, 3GB in the NL East)
The Marlins are playing like they actually want that new ballpark. The Phillies are pulling away in the NL East, but the Marlins are ready to take over if Philly slides. Now, the trick is getting people to show up to their games.
11. Atlanta Braves (32-28, 3.5GB in the NL East)
The Braves are showing they’re not done just yet. Thanks to Jonny Venters, who has allowed just two runs in 80+ innings this year, the Braves are legitimate contenders in 2011.
12. Seattle Mariners (31-28, 2.5GB in the AL West)
Speaking of legitimate contenders, the Mariners have to be included in that discussion. They played the Rays very well, and just keep winning. They might end up division winners come September.
13. Arizona Diamondbacks (33-27, .5GB in the NL West)
The Diamondbacks held first place in the NL West for a time, but have since cooled off a bit. They may not be a factor down the road, but they sure are being a thorn in the side of other NL West teams right now.
14. Toronto Blue Jays (30-29, 4gB in the AL East)
The Blue Jays are playing well, but as it is with Tampa Bay, four games back in the AL East might as well be 14. The Jays can try their best to contend, but they may not be able to keep pace. Of course, with Jose Bautista and Adam Lind, nothing’s impossible.
15. Detroit Tigers (31-27, 2.5GB in the AL Central)
The Tigers are suddenly one of the hotter teams in the American League, putting the pressure on the Indians in the Central. Miguel Cabrera is looking like an MVP candidate again, and Al Alurquerque is looking like a future relief ace in the bigs.
16. Los Angeles Angels (30-31, 4.5GB in the AL West)
Is it time to panic in Anaheim? The Angels are once again under .500 and falling quickly in the division. After hyping up Maicer Izturis and Erick Aybar, the combo is only hitting .206 combined since May 17.
17. Cincinnati Reds (30-30, 5.5GB in the NL Central)
Due to awful pitching, the Reds are fading fast both in the Central and as contenders this year, though Jay Bruce and Joey Votto continue to hit like MVPs.
18. Pittsburgh Pirates (28-30, 6.5GB in the NL Central)
The Pirates are just two games under .500 and actually may threaten in the Central race later on the year. It’s surprising, seeing as the team has never even close to contended even this late in the year.
19. Colorado Rockies (27-31, 5.5GB in the NL West)
Simply put, the Rockies just can’t hit. At all. Even with pitching gems like the one delivered by Jason Hammel on Sunday, going almost 6 innings before giving up a hit. Tulo and CarGo just aren’t hitting, and this team will go as they go. Bad news for the Rockies.
20. Oakland Athletics (27-33, 7GB in the AL West)
The A’s continue their downward spiral in 2011. If they don’t get their act together soon, they may find themselves sitting at home in October instead of participating like they once believed they could.
21. Chicago White Sox (28-33,7GB in the AL Central)
The White Sox are riding high after going to Fenway and sweeping the Red Sox, but their problems persist inside the AL Central. They’re still in contention in the division, but are walking on eggshells as one slip-up could leave them on the outside looking in.
22. New York Mets (28-31, 7GB in the NL East)
Ah, the Mets. The team is 5-5 in their past 10 games, but Jose Reyes is playing like he wants to stay in Queens, hitting .465 with four doubles, four triples, and 13 runs scored in that time.
23. Los Angeles Dodgers (28-32, 5.5GB in the NL West)
The Dodgers are playing like they want to actually do well in the division. Frank McCourt paid the team for the month recently, and Matt Kemp responded by hitting five home runs with a .488 OBP and an .886 slugging percentage.
24. Kansas City Royals (25-34, 9GB in the AL Central)
The Royals continue their slide, losing four to the Twins this past week, while only scoring 6 runs in those four games while getting outscored by 20 runs.
25. Baltimore Orioles (26-31, 7GB in the AL East)
The Fightin’ Showalters have dropped to last in the AL East after an impressive first month. They won just one game in the past week, and Brian Roberts is gone for the foreseeable future with a concussion.
26. San Diego Padres (27-33, 6.5GB in the NL West)
The Padres are staying afloat mainly because of their bullpen. Best in the National League, opponents are only hitting .217 against them. Bad news for the Rockies, who the Padres welcome in for a three-game set starting tonight.
27. Washington Nationals (26-33, 9GB in the NL East)
The Nationals are riding the hot streak from Rookie of the Year favorite Danny Espinosa, who leads NL Rookies with 10 homers, 33 RBIs, and 5 stolen bases. If he can get his average up over .220, he’ll be set for 2011.
28. Chicago Cubs (23-34, 11GB in the NL Central)
Another year, another disappointment. At this rate, the Cubs can look to pack it up come August 1st. Don’t be surprised if Carlos Zambrano is gone before the deadline.
29. Houston Astros (23-37, 12.5GB in the NL Central)
The Astros are only noteworthy because of Hunter Pence, who’s in the top five in the league in batting average, doubles, and RBIs. The departure of Bill Hall from Houston also helps.
30. Minnesota Twins (21-37, 12.5GB in the AL Central)
The Twins travel to division-leading Cleveland this week and look to continue slowing decreasing their deficit, but probably won’t be able to get much done without their power hitters.