Most of the movement comes in the 10-20 range in this week’s MLB power rankings, but there’s a new No. 2 team behind the Dodgers.
1. Los Angeles Dodgers (45-21) | Last week: 1
Coming off Tommy John surgery, Corey Seager appears to be getting in a groove for the Dodgers, as he recorded seven hits against the Giants over the weekend, raising his season average from .253 to .271 in three days. It was the pitching that did the heavy lifting for LA last week, but Seager getting back to his All-Star form can help make this offense really scary.
2. Houston Astros (45-22) | Last week: 3 (+1)
Both the Dodgers and Astros are 8-2 in their last ten games and 23-7 in their last 30 (tied for best in the majors in both marks), and Houston slides up to the No. 2 spot in the power rankings after a 5-2 week. The Astros continue their homestand with two games against the Brewers and three against the Jays with two days off this week.
3. Minnesota Twins (43-21) | Last week: 2 (-1)
A .500 week drops the Twins one spot in the power rankings, but the offense continues to put up big run totals with solid pitching. Byron Buxton had a strong seven days, with six hits and a couple of homers for Minnesota.
4. Tampa Bay Rays (40-24) | Last week: 6 (+2)
The Rays continue to do more than just hang around, as a 5-2 stretch last week—including taking three of four at Fenway—puts them back in a tie for first place in the AL East with the Yankees. Hopefully Tampa fans start filling up Tropicana Field, because the team should be getting more support.
5. New York Yankees (40-24) | Last week: 4 (-1)
After Tommy John surgery last year, Didi Gregorius returned to the Yankees lineup over the weekend and promptly recorded a couple of two-hit games in his first two starts of the season. The Yankees lost back-to-back series in a surprising week, though, and they’ll look to get back in sole control of first place before they face the Rays next week.
6. Chicago Cubs (37-27) | Last week: 8 (+2)
Chicago bounced back from a down week offensively with 5.9 runs per game during their 6-1 stretch the last seven days—and the Cubs bullpen got some big-time reinforcements after the team signed Craig Kimbrel. Matchups against the Rockies and Dodgers in the coming days should be fun.
7. Milwaukee Brewers (38-28) | Last week: 5 (-2)
The Brewers drop a couple of spots in the power rankings just because of the leaps by the Rays and Cubs—but a 4-2 week puts them at ten games above .500. Losing a series to the Marlins wasn’t a good look, but it happens, and they bounced back with a sweep of the Pirates.
8. Philadelphia Phillies (37-28) | Last week: 7 (-1)
The season-ending knee injury to Andrew McCutchen is a tough blow to the Phillies, but they acquired Jay Bruce at just the right time to help keep the offense steady. Bruce had eight hits, four home runs (in his first four games), and 11 RBI in his first five games with Philadelphia.
9. Atlanta Braves (36-29) | Last week: 9
The Braves matched the Phillies’ 4-2 week with a 4-2 week of their own, as they’re remaining steady right behind them in the NL East. The signing of Dallas Keuchel could give them a boost to get into first place in the division, especially with the injuries the Phillies are dealing with.
10. Boston Red Sox (34-32) | Last week: 11 (+1)
The Red Sox started last week very well with 23 runs scored in a three-game sweep of the Royals, but the Rays shut down Boston’s offense, allowing just nine runs in four games. Everyone should send thoughts and prayers to Red Sox legend David Ortiz as he recovers from getting shot in the Dominican Republic, and hopefully we see Big Papi firing up the crowd at Fenway Park soon.
11. Colorado Rockies (33-31) | Last week: 10 (-1)
Colorado had some trouble with Mets pitching over the weekend, as they scored just four runs combined on Saturday and Sunday. A couple of series losses send the Rockies down one spot in the power rankings, but they return to Coors Field—where they’ve been better than on the road this season—for this entire week.
12. Cleveland Indians (33-32) | Last week: 14 (+2)
There’s been talk of the Indians becoming sellers, but they just had one of their best weeks of the season with series wins over first-place teams (the Twins and Yankees) to get back over .500. Catcher Roberto Perez was a big part of that, as he hit a homer in four straight games in what’s been a breakout season for the 30-year-old.
13. Texas Rangers (34-30) | Last week: 16 (+3)
Rangers pitching led them to a two-game sweep of the Orioles to start last week, then the offense woke back up for a higher-scoring series in a four-game split with the A’s. The great Adrian Beltre had his No. 29 jersey retired by the franchise over the weekend.
14. Arizona Diamondbacks (34-32) | Last week: 17 (+3)
The Diamondbacks were able to avoid a sweep against the Dodgers with an extra-innings walk-off win, then they took care of the Blue Jays with a dominant all-around performance. This week will include a couple of nice tests against the Phillies and Nats.
15. Oakland Athletics (33-33) | Last week: 18 (+3)
Sitting at .500 after a solid week, the A’s will take on the Rays before facing the Mariners over the weekend. Oakland is just a couple of games behind Texas for the second wild card spot in the American League.
16. St. Louis Cardinals (31-32) | Last week: 12 (-4)
The Cardinals drop four spots in the power rankings after going 1-4 last week, including getting swept by the Cubs over the weekend. St. Louis faces the Marlins in two of their next three series, so this might be an opportunity for them to go on a good run.
17. New York Mets (32-33) | Last week: 21 (+4)
Though it started with a loss despite Jacob deGrom striking out ten in six innings (two runs allowed), the Mets had a performance that makes you optimistic about them over the weekend, as their starting staff had electric performances from deGrom, Steven Matz, and Noah Syndergaard. The Mets have some momentum heading into the Subway Series.
18. San Diego Padres (33-33) | Last week: 13 (-5)
They are coming off a four-game split with the Nationals, but it’s been four series since the Padres have gotten a series victory—and a 3-4 week puts them back at the .500 mark. At least San Diego is hanging around in a crowded National League.
19. Washington Nationals (30-35) | Last week: 22 (+3)
Four consecutive homers helped power the Nationals’ win over the Padres yesterday, capping off a 4-2 stretch to get to 30-35. Washington will look to get within potential striking distance of Philadelphia, as they face the White Sox and D’Backs this week before facing the Phillies a week from today.
20. Los Angeles Angels (31-35) | Last week: 15 (-5)
Despite three homers each from Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani, that was a bad week for the Angels (2-5), and things aren’t going to get easy as they play the Dodgers and Rays this week. A 3-3 stretch in the next six games should be considered a win.
21. Pittsburgh Pirates (30-34) | Last week: 19 (-2)
The Pirates picked up a series victory over the Braves, but they couldn’t keep the momentum going and dropped three straight to the Brewers. No days off for Pittsburgh this week: They get another four cracks at Atlanta before facing Miami.
22. Chicago White Sox (31-33) | Last week: 20 (-2)
After a 6.13 ERA in 32 games last season, Lucas Giolito has been an amazing story in 2019. The 24-year-old is 9-1 with a 2.28 ERA, and he’s been absolutely dominant as of late, with a complete game shutout, an eight-inning (three runs allowed) outing, and back-to-back performances of 7.1 innings and 7.2 innings with no runs allowed—while recording 39 strikeouts (at least nine in each outing). The White Sox hope he’s indicative of their future, though they continue to compete this season.
23. Cincinnati Reds (29-35) | Last week: 23
The Reds offense went cold again this week, as the hitting continues to let down one of the most surprising pitching staffs in the majors this season. Cincinnati’s next three series are against the American League (Cleveland, Texas, and Houston).
24. San Francisco Giants (26-38) | Last week: 24
Madison Bumgarner threw seven innings and made one mistake yesterday against the Dodgers, which turned into a home run by Max Muncy. Mad Bum told Muncy to run around the bases after his homer instead of staring at the ball, and the Dodgers slugger had a comeback that people seemed to love. This probably isn’t the end of this, and it’d be fun to see an old school guy like Bumgarner back in competitive situations in October (which probably won’t happen unless he’s traded).
25. Seattle Mariners (28-41) | Last week: 25
Jay Bruce is now doing damage in Philadelphia, and the Mariners are going to make more big moves in the coming weeks. On the field, they’ll look to knock the first-place Twins down a notch on the road starting tomorrow night.
26. Detroit Tigers (24-38) | Last week: 26
The Tigers were able to pick up a couple of wins to avoid sweeps against the Rays and Twins, but now they’ll have a better opportunity at a series win as they play the Royals for three games. JaCoby Jones had a two-homer, five-RBI performance over the weekend.
27. Miami Marlins (23-40) | Last week: 27
The Marlins continue to compete, and they picked up a series victory versus the Brewers, including an 11-run explosion in the fifth inning of the second game of the series.
28. Toronto Blue Jays (23-42) | Last week: 28
Marcus Stroman just had a subpar outing in which he gave up six runs, but his bounce-back season (3.31 ERA after a 5.54 ERA last season) is great for the Blue Jays despite the lack of team success. Stroman should draw plenty of trade interest from contenders around baseball, and his value is up. Toronto plays the top team in the AL (Astros) and one of the bottom teams in the AL (Orioles) this week.
29. Kansas City Royals (20-45) | Last week: 29
The Royals weren’t able to pull off a series win against the White Sox, and they haven’t won a series since April. Kansas City is about the future, including second overall pick Bobby Witt, Jr., a high school shortstop and son of former long-time MLB pitcher Bobby Witt.
30. Baltimore Orioles (20-45) | Last week: 30
Meanwhile, the Orioles are hitching their wagon to Oregon State catcher Adley Rutschman, who is seen as a generational prospect—especially at his position. Baltimore also hasn’t won a series since April.