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JAKE ROBINSON BASEBALL POWER RANKINGS (May 8th-May 23rd)
1. Cleveland Indians 28-15 (last ranking:2) : Justin Masterson and Josh Tomlin continue to be lights out. The Tribe is Number 2 in the American League in pitching, and number 1 in batting. With Travis Hafner and Grady Sizemore going to the disabled list, Shin Soo Choo must break out of his early season slump.
2. Philadelphia Phillies 28-17 (1) : The returns of (C) Carlos Ruiz and (P) Roy Oswalt were welcome additions to the team. (2B) Chase Utley is coming. If Utley returns to form, Expect Ryan Howard to overcome his inconsistent season thus far.
3. Florida Marlins 26-18 (5) : With (LF) Logan Morrison's return from the disabled list, the Marlins finally have their opening day outfield together. Pitchers, Josh Johson, Ricky Nolasco and Anibal Sanchez continue to keep pace with the Phillies rotation. (1B) Gabby Sanchez trails only Joey Votto of the Reds in first basemen production. If he is a free agent in your fantasy league grab him immediately.
4. St. Louis Cardinals 27-20 (6) : Albert Pujols continues to struggle. At last count as of Saturday he had gone 102 consecutive at bats without a home run. Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman are numbers one and two in the National League batting title chase. If and when Pujols finds his stroke, the middle of that lineup is going to be scary. Even without Adam Wainright, and a mediocre season from Chris Carpenter, the pitching staff has been solid, led by southpaw Jaime Garcia.
5. San Francisco Giants 26-19 (10) : It continues to be, all about the pitching out in Frisco. The hitting is still problematic.Statistically speaking, they are currently ranked 13th out of 16 in National League batting. Miguel Tejada and Aubrey Huff continue to hover around the Mendoza Line. Through all their offensive woes, they have still won seven of their last ten. Again, it's all about the pitching.
6. Tampa Bay Rays 25-21 (4) : Manager Joe Maddon continues to resist the temptation of playing (OF) Matt Joyce every day, even though he leads the American League in hitting. Maddon has decided to give the red hot Joyce off against left handed pitching. Rookie (P) Jeremy Hellickson, has been phenomenal, and has given the rotation balance.
7. Cincinatti Reds 25-21 (11) : Team has taken a slight step back after a sweep at the hands of Ohio rival Indians. Arnoldis Chapman's shoulder injuries leaves the team with a void at the set up man bridge, to closer Francisco Cordero. The return of (3B) Scott Rolen gives the N.L's third ranked offense even more punch.(C) Ramon Hernandez looks revitalized.
8. Atlanta Braves 25-22 (9) : Pitcher Jair Jurrjens, has paced the pitching attack that is currently ranked number one in the National League. The right hander has thrown his name into the conversation for early season Cy Young contention. Somehow, the team needs to keep Chipper Jones and Jason Heyward upright, in order for their spotty offense to keep up with the pitching.
9. Boston Red Sox 24-21 (17) : Adrian Gonzalez is making himself real cozy in the confines of Fenway Park. He is looking like he is worth every penny the Red Sox shelled out for him. (SS) Jed Lowrie is emerging into a fine hitter. The losses of pitchers Daisuke Matsuzaka and John Lackey in the rotation, might prove to be a good thing. Both hurlers have been awful.Now if they could just get (OF) Carl Crawford to start hitting, and stop stealing money, this team has the makings of an offensive powerhouse.
10. New York Yankees 24-20 (3) : It's been a tumultuous week in Gotham, to say the least. The Yankees desperately want to bring up Phenom prospect catcher Jesus Montero, to spell Russell Martin behind the plate and play DH. Jorge Posada has not taken to his demotion very well, asking out of a game earlier this week, after manager Joe Girardi had him penciled in at the eighth slot in the batting order. In 1993, rookie Posada took the catching position from a player, entering the twilight of his career. Ironically that player was Joe Girardi. Where is George Stienbrenner when you need some order and stability, on a dysfunctional team. I can't believe I just wrote that.
11. Los Angelas Angels 23-23 (7) : (SS) Alberto Callaspo and (2B) Howie Kendrick have exceeded expectations with the stick, but the lineup has no discernible power to speak of. (DH) Bob Abreu and (RF) Torii Hunter look a little long in the tooth. Former Gold Glover Hunter, lost a fly ball in the sun, thursday,in the ninth inning, costing the Halos a game against the Mariners. All of sudden, pitcher Jared Weaver can't get any one out. A complete contrast to his 6-o start.
12. Texas Rangers 23-23 (13) : Right handed pitcher Alexi Ogando continues to be scintillating on the bump, sporting a 4-0 record with a 2.06 ERA. Neftali Perez at last count had converted his last 19 saves. (OF) Josh Hamilton is expected back from a broken wrist, this week, and should help a struggling offense. Manager Ron Washington has moved (2B) Ian Kinsler, (DH) Michael Young and (3B) Adrian Beltre down in the lineup, to shake things up.
13. Colorado Rockies 23-21 (8) : The Rocks are hoping Ty Wiggington's return off the disabled list, will stabilize their third base offensive woes. Ian Stewert was demoted to AAA Colorado Springs for assignment, after his lack of production from the hot corner. (1B) Todd Helton looks like his old self, or should I say, his young self. Both the average and the power numbers are up from the last two years. (P) Ubaldo Jimminez is still a mess mechanically, and his record and ERA have suffered because of it.
14. Toronto Blue Jays 23-23 (21) : (1B) Adam Lind was placed on the 15 day disabled list, with a bad back. In his place the Jays brought up coveted farm hand, Eric Thames from AAA Las Vegas. Slugger Jose Bautista hit three home runs Sunday against the Twins in their own crib, and hit a total of five in the sweep of the Twinkies at Target Field.
15. Milwaukee Brewers 23-23 (26) : With the exception of Shawn Marcum and Yovani Gallardo, The pitching has been suspect. Oft injured Zack Grienke is back on the Disabled list, and the Brew Crew is hoping that Randy Wolf will return to form. One thing this team can do is rake. They are fourth in N.L batting.
16. Detroit Tigers 22-23 (16) : Justin Verlander, after his no-hitter against the Blue Jays, threw 5 2/3 innings of no hit ball against the Royals, finally giving up a hit to Alex Gordon. That now makes it 73 years since Johnny Vandermeer threw back to back no hitters, a major league record. Despite his impressive ERA, the Tigers offense has sputtered. (OF) Magglio Ordonez was put on the disabled list again for a sore right ankle.
17. Pittsburgh Pirates 22-23 (14) : (2B) Neil Walker is the best kept secret in baseball. The Pittsburgh native is doing his best to keep the Bucs in the N.L Central hunt. Pitcher Kevin Correia has been steady as they go. Manager Clint Hurdle benched (OF) Andrew McCutchen for failing to run out a ground ball against the Reds earlier in the week. Finally some accountability, for this ball club, after years of a sub par play.
18. Oakland A's 22-24 (15) : Pitcher Dallas Braden had surgery on his shoulder, effectively ending the southpaw's season. Regardless the Athletics still have the best pitching in the majors, with a team ERA of 2.84. Triple A Sacramento is stocked with young arms. Offense remains a problem.
19. New York Mets 22-23 (24) : The Mets have been playing alot better, despite injuries to (3B) David Wright and (1B) Ike Davis. Center Fielder Angel Pagan is expected to return from the D.L, after suffering a sprained ankle.
20. Kansas City Royals 22-23 (12) : Staff "ace" Bruce Chen has been moved to the D.L with a sore back. Vin Mazzaro gave up 13 earned runs against the Rangers and was immediately demoted to AAA Omaha. The 13 earned runs is a major league record. How any manager can leave a pitcher in, to get tattooed for so many runs, is beyond me.
21. Arizona Diamondbacks 21-23 (23) : Pitcher Ian Kennedy has been nothing short of spectacular for the Snakes this year. The team is awaiting the arrival of Zach Duke off the D.L any day now. Closer J.J Putz has converted his first nine save opportunities this year and has nailed down the closer role, which was a major problem for the team last year.
22. Washington Nationals 21-24 (22) : (OF) Rick Ankiel was placed on the 15 day D.L for a sprained wrist, opening the door for Roger Bernadina, to attain consistent playing time. Bernadina has been amazing in the field and has added a spark to the National League's worst hitting team.
23. Los Angeles Dodgers 21-26 (18) : This team continues to struggle, on and off the field. The Owner Frank McCourt's divorce from his wife Jamie has dominated the headlines, and took another twist this week. Jamie McCourt asked a judge to force a quick sale of the team, before Major League Baseball takes over the team, thus reducing the overall value of the Dodgers. This team is a mess.
24. Chicago White Sox 21-26 (28) : Because pitcher Phil Humber has been so good in the starting rotation, manager Ozzie Gullen has decided to go to a 6 man rotation upon Jake Peavy's return from the D.L. With the exception of (1B) Paul Knoerko, the lineup has underachieved all year, and the bullpen is still a mess.
25. Baltimore Orioles 20-24 (25) : Of all the free agent acquisitions this team made in the off season, J.J Hardy has been the only one with consistency. The pitching is next to last in the A.L. Reliever Mike Gonzalez has been heinous and closer Kevin Gregg has only been slightly better. When Gregg gets ahead in the count he is adequate at best. When he falls behind, and then grooves fastball he is less than ordinary.
26. Chicago Cubs 20-24 (28) : Bad Pitching, as well as injuries to hurlers Randy Wells and Andrew Cashner have accounted for this teams downward spiral. The Cubbies have the second ranked N.L offensive attack, but besides Carlos Zambrano, the starting rotation has been so bad, that all the hitting in the world, can't make up for the glaring deficiencies on the mound. That compounded by the fact that (OF) Marlon Byrd had multiple facial fractures after taking a pitch to the face against the Red Sox Pitcher Alfredo Aceves on Sunday. The Cubs need to dig deep down and test their mettle.
27. Seattle Mariners 20-24 (19) : Two good things happened for the M's this week. First of all, they were able to sever ties with malcontent, Milton Bradley, who's once promising career appears to be over. They also got news that closer David Aardsma will not undergo season ending elbow surgery, and should be able to return after the all-star break. Pitcher, Michael Pineda continues to be brilliant.
28. San Diego Padres 19-26 (29) : Brad Hawpe had struggled as Adrian Gonzalez's replacement at first base, but now appears to be heating up. Too bad the pitching has been abysmal. Even last years breakout pitcher Mat Latos has been flat out terrible.
29. Houston Astros 16-30 (30) : Owner Drayton McClane has sold the team to Houston businessman Jim Crane. Maybe he can figure out where to start with this team. The Stros are just all around bad and uninspiring.
30. Minnesota Twins 15-28 (27) : Can this season possibly get worse. First the losses mounted up. Then key injuries to (DH) Jim Thome, (C) Joe Maur and (OF) Delmon Young among others have cemented doom to this lost season. As if to add salt to the wounds, the baseball world and the Twins family, lost a true bad ass. Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew lost his battle to Esophageal Cancer at the age of 71. He clobbered 571 home runs in an era of numbers, not polluted by steroid controversy. The player, known as Killer, was anything but. He was a gentle giant who was loved and respected by his peers. These power rankings are dedicated to you Mr. Killebrew. I hope you're somewhere at the big stadium in the sky, hitting hanging sliders, a country mile.
Due to technical difficulties, i was unable to supply the rankings for last week. these rankings are based on the past two weeks. Sorry for the inconvenience. - Jake Robinson-
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