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2015 MLB Power Rankings Week One
MLB Power Ranks Week One
Major League Baseball is back and I don't know about you but I'm loving every minute of it. This is the time of year when fans of each ball club can be truly optimistic about their team's fortunes. Do you really think most Kansas City Royals fans actually thought their team would be in last year's Fall Classic? It just goes to show you that anything can happen. One week is already in the books so let's take a look at who got out of the gate hot and who is still sleepwalking.
*Note ~ All records and stats are through Monday's games. Also note that these blogs will be regularly posted on Mondays.
1. Kansas City Royals (7-0) ~ Why not start it off with last season's darlings? Kansas City is the only remaining unbeaten team in baseball and became the first team since 1914 to win their first seven games by two or more runs.
2. Detroit Tigers (6-1) ~ The Tigers started the season by not allowing a run for 32 innings which tied a modern record set by the 1963 Cardinals. If I did this blog yesterday they would have topped the charts. Sorry Tiger fans.
3. Boston Red Sox (5-2) ~ If you take out the recent spanking by the hated Yankees the Sox are off to a nice start. Can they pull a worst-to-first again in the AL East? Weirder things have happened.
4. Toronto Blue Jays (4-2) ~ Mark Buehrle picked up career win number 200 over the weekend making him just the 116th pitcher to ever reach that feat. A model of consistency he has been criminally underrated for most of his career.
5. Chicago Cubs (4-2) ~ A lot of reasons for optimism in Chicago this year. A major one, Kris Bryant, could be making his big league debut as soon as this weekend in Pittsburgh. If you are in western PA get your tickets now.
6. Atlanta Braves (6-1) ~ Justin Upton, Melvin Upton, Jason Heyward, Evan Gattis, Craig Kimbrel, Kris Medlen. These are some of the names that are no longer in Atlanta. The fact that these Braves are 6-1 is shocking to say the least especially to this Braves fan. I don't expect this to keep up.
7. Los Angeles Dodgers (4-3) ~ It's only one week but Adrian Gonzalez is batting .556 and has already swatted five home runs while taking home National League Player of the Week honors.
8. Cincinnati Reds (4-3) ~ Another first baseman off to a hot start is Joey Votto of the Reds. After an injury plagued 2014 the former MVP is hitting .345 with three homers of his own. If the Reds are going to make noise in a tough NL Central they will need Votto's power to return.
9. Colorado Rockies (5-2) ~ Looks like we have our first closer change of the season. LaTroy Hawkins is out, at least for now, and Rafael Betancourt is in. Adjust your fantasy rosters accordingly.
10. Tampa Bay Rays (4-3) ~ This puts three surprise teams in the top 10. Do they all deserve it? Right now the answer is yes. Things will even out as the season goes along but for now teams of the projected bottom feeders can smile just a little bit.
11. New York Mets (4-3) ~ Bartolo Colon picked up his first RBI in a decade while the Mets handed Atlanta their only loss so far this year. Whoever thinks we need a DH in both leagues needs to watch Colon bat. That is entertainment at its basest form.
12. Oakland A's (4-4) ~ Scott Kazmir is officially back. After a solid 2014 in Oakland he is 2-0 this year with 18 strikeouts and a 0.69 ERA. Comebacks are part of what makes baseball fun.
13. St. Louis Cardinals (3-3) ~ For the Cardinals it is all about pitching. As long as Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha stay healthy this club will be just fine.
14. Arizona Diamondbacks (4-3) ~ Archie Bradley impressed in Spring Training which allowed Arizona to trade away Trevor Cahill and open up a spot in the rotation. Bradley then had the unenviable task of taking the mound opposite Clayton Kershaw. Naturally Bradley earned his first big league win against perhaps the best in the business.
15. Pittsburgh Pirates (3-4) ~ The city of Pittsburgh held their breath when it appeared Andrew McCutchen had suffered a knee injury. After a day of rest he returned to the lineup and went 2-for-4 with a home run and four driven in. The city of Pittsburgh then let out a collective sigh of relief.
16. Baltimore Orioles (3-4) ~ The big question in Baltimore is when will Matt Wieters be able to come back and will he be able to play at the level the O's are accustomed to seeing?
17. Washington Nationals (2-5) ~ Their sluggish start out of the gate can partly be attributed to the fact that Denard Span, Anthony Rendon and Jason Werth started the season on the disabled list. Most people's pick to win the World Series (including mine) the Nats have proven that you can't win a championship on paper. You still have to play good baseball.
18. San Diego Padres (4-4) ~ The team with the most intriguing offseason is certainly worth watching. Will the revamped outfield help the offense enough to get over the hump and into the playoffs?
19. Los Angeles Angels (3-4) ~ While all the talk in LA is about Josh Hamilton the Angels should be more concerned with who is actually on the field. Jered Weaver's decreasing velocity may be catching up with him as the former ace has been knocked around in his two starts to the tune of an 8.71 ERA with only six strikeouts in 10 1/3 innings.
20. Seattle Mariners (3-4) ~ After leading the bigs with 40 home runs last year the big question was whether the power would follow Nelson Cruz to Seattle. One week in the slugger has already hit four further than they built the wall.
21. San Francisco Giants (3-5) ~ The defending champs have lost four in a row but with three titles in five years I'm sure nobody in San Fran is worried. Now if this was an even year...
22. Philadelphia Phillies (3-4) ~ Will Ruben Amaro Jr. find a trade partner and send Cole Hamels out of Philly? Will Chase Utley finish out his career there? Will anyone take Ryan Howard? These are the questions surrounding the Phillies.
23. Cleveland Indians (2-4) ~ Catcher Yan Gomes will miss the next 6-8 weeks due to an MCL sprain. That is a big blow to the Indians on both sides of the ball.
24. New York Yankees (3-4) ~ Errors, errors and more errors. The Yankees are second to last in the American League with nine errors in their first seven games.
25. Chicago White Sox (2-4) ~ A week into the season and the Sox are giving up nearly twice as many runs (33) as they have plated (18). An offense that features Jose Abreu, Adam LaRoche and Melky Cabrera should produce more but the pitching staff will have to do their part as well.
26. Houston Astros (3-4) ~ Prior to his ninth inning single Monday night Evan Gattis had started the season 0-for-23 with 12 strikeouts. They were beginning to call him the human air conditioner. Gattis does bring power but the strikeouts are part of the package. He should fit right in with the rest of the strikeout prone Astros.
27. Texas Rangers (3-4) ~ The injuries keep coming for the Rangers. Starting left fielder Ryan Rua will be in a walking boot after suffering a severe ankle sprain along with a non-displaced fracture in his heel. Kinsler's curse continues.
28. Milwaukee Brewers (2-5) ~ Milwaukee is 2-0 when giving up four runs or fewer. The problem with that so far is that they are 0-5 when giving up more than four runs.
29. Miami Marlins (1-6) ~ So far Miami's offense has been non-existent. They have scored more than two runs in a game twice. It's hard to win when you don't score runs.
30. Minnesota Twins (1-6) ~ This past offseason saw the Twins hand out the richest contract in club history: four years and $55 million to Ervin Santana. He is currently sitting out the first 80 games for a PED suspension. Ouch.