Major League Baseball Power Rankings After the Month of August
Major League Baseball 2014
Angels take over top spot in rankings
1. Los Angeles Angels (83-53) - The Angels went 19-10 in the month of August to give them the best record in all of baseball by a significant margin. They currently hold a four game lead on the second place Oakland Athletics, but things could get interesting in the final month after they lost ace pitcher Garrett Richards to a knee injury. The Angels led by an elite offense, now hold the top spot in the Power Rankings with a great opportunity to win the American League West.
2. Baltimore Orioles (79-56) - The Orioles went 19-9 in a spectacular month of August for the team, which gave them the largest division lead for first place in all of baseball at nine games. While the Orioles have plenty of good starting pitchers, they have played this season without a true ace starting pitcher. With one of the best bullpens in baseball they have found a way to close out many close games this season. For the second straight season, Chris Tillman has been their best starting pitcher, but it is a spectacular combination of offense and defense that has the Orioles near the top of the rankings with just a month to go.
3. Washington Nationals (77-58) - The Nationals went 19-10 in the month of August to take control of first place in the National League East. They currently hold a six game lead over the Braves, and could be the first National League team to clinch their division in the month of September. The Nationals recent run corresponded with the team getting healthy, as Jayson Werth and Bryce Harper are back in the lineup for them everyday.
4. Oakland Athletics (78-58) - The Athletics pace slowed in the month following the trade deadline, as they went 12-17 in the month of August. Much of this is due to the fact that they traded away their cleanup hitter, in order to load up their pitching staff for postseason play. Now they have fallen to second place in the American League West, and are in a battle to hold onto a wildcard playoff spot with some of the teams behind them, playing very good baseball.
5. Los Angeles Dodgers (77-60) - The Dodgers went 15-13 in the month of August to maintain their hold on first place in the National League West. The Giants have played good baseball recently as well so the Dodgers lead in the West is only 2.5 games, but with a dominant rotation, the Dodgers should be able to take the division in the final month of the season. Going into the postseason, the Dodgers will look to get some key players back in order to get to the point where they are healthy enough to be at their best.
6. Kansas City Royals (74-61) - The Royals made huge strides in the month of August by going 21-9, to take over first place in the American League Central. Detroit is very close to them in the standings entering the final month, but with a strong pitching staff and a fantastic bullpen, the Royals are in position to close out games every time they get the lead. The final month of the season will be huge for the Royals as they try to clinch their first postseason berth in 29 years.
7. San Francisco Giants (74-62) - The Giants went 16-12 in the month of August, to help put an end to their midseason slide down the standings. Entering the final month, the Giants are in second place in the National League West, but they are within striking distance of the division crown and they currently occupy a National League wildcard spot in the standings. Hot hitting and strong pitching helped the Giants to a winning record in the month of August after getting some key players back from the disabled list.
8. Detroit Tigers (74-62) - The Tigers went 16-15 in the month of August, and have been stuck playing .500 ball for about two months now. This allowed the Royals to catch and pass them in the American League Central standings, but the elite pitchers on the Tigers pitching staff could be the difference in the division race during the final month of the season. Anibal Sanchez is out with a puzzling injury that could cause him to miss a significant period of time, so that helps to level the playing field in crunch time for the race between the Tigers and Royals.
9. St. Louis Cardinals (73-63) - The Cardinals went 16-13 in the month of August to move into a first place tie with the Brewers in the National League Central division standings. The Cardinals scuffled some to close out the month of August, but they are right where they want to be going into the final month of the season. The Cardinals negative run differential could be a bad indicator for the team in September as they are part of a three team race for the division crown.
10. Seattle Mariners (73-62) - The Mariners went 17-10 in the month of August to get right back into the middle of the American League wildcard race. They currently sit a half game back of the second wildcard spot, but are in great position to compete for and ultimately take an American League playoff berth. If the Mariners take a wildcard berth, they will be favored to win the wildcard game if they can line up Felix Hernandez to pitch the one game playoff.
11. Milwaukee Brewers (73-63) - The Brewers went 13-14 in the month of August to allow the Cardinals to move into a first place tie with them in the National League Central. The Brewers still have all the pieces in place that allowed them to reach their high water mark on the season, so they are still in a good spot entering the final month. The scuffle to end the month with three straight series losses is what caused the division race to get so close, as the NL Central is once again a three team race.
12. Atlanta Braves (72-65) - The Atlanta Braves went 14-14 in the month of August to stay right in the middle of the National League wildcard race, but they no longer have much of a chance at the National League East division title. The Braves season in 2014 has been marked with inconsistency, and their playoff chances in September will largely depend on whether the Braves hit a hot streak or have more of their cold streaks.
13. Pittsburgh Pirates (71-65) - The Pirates went 14-14 in the month of August, and seven of those losses came all in one losing streak. The Pirates had a couple weeks where the injury bug hit hard in August, but with players returning from the disabled list, they found some consistency with three straight series wins to end the month. The Pirates have yet to win five games in a row this season, so if they are able to put together their first five game winning streak in September, their playoff hopes will get a huge boost.
14. Cleveland Indians (70-64) - The Indians went 17-9 to get back into the American League Central division race as well as the American League wildcard race. The Indians traded Justin Masterson at the deadline for a prospect, but with him having a tough season, they may have upgraded by subtracting him from their rotation. Corey Kluber continues to be the ace of their staff, backed by a strong offense during their playoff push.
15. New York Yankees (70-65) - The Yankees went 15-13 in the month of August to stay in the American League wildcard race. They have been getting fantastic starting pitching from the trio of Michael Pineda, Shane Greene and Brandon McCarthy. Other trade deadline additions such as Chase Headley and Martin Prado, have been very productive for the Yankees in the month of August. Concerns about the Yankees offense still exist and it could lead to the Yankees not being able to make up the necessary ground in the final month of the season.
16. Toronto Blue Jays (69-67) - The Blue Jays went 9-17 in August, which was a slide down the standings that took them out of the wild card chase in the American League. While the Blue Jays are not completely out of the race, it would require a fantastic month of September in order for them to make the climb back into a wildcard spot. The emergence of Marcus Stroman would help a bittersweet potential winning season to offer hope for the future, as the Jays could pair Stroman and top prospect Aaron Sanchez at the top of their rotation.
17. Miami Marlins (66-69) - The Marlins went 13-14 in the month of August with a string of series losses to finish out the month, that may have taken them out of the wildcard race. This is a successful season for the young Marlins squad as they lost their ace early in the season, but had other stars emerge on their pitching staff to keep the team in hunt late into the season. The Marlins have something solid to build around going into next season when their ace pitcher will return.
18. Tampa Bay Rays (66-71) - The Rays push for the playoffs ended when they traded David Price at the non-waiver trade deadline. The Rays were still able to go 13-16 in August because they have a decent group of players in place even after moving David Price. The Rays are in great position to try to construct a competitive roster going into next season.
19. Cincinnati Reds (66-71) - The Reds post all-star break swoon continued in August as the team went 12-17 to completely fall out of contention for a National League wildcard berth. The Reds face some tough decisions in the upcoming offseason as they will look to try to hold off the young and talented Cubs squad that is showing that they have a potential to make a push next season.
20. San Diego Padres (64-71) - The Padres went 16-11 in the month of August as they continued their recent late season trend of closing in on .500 by season's end. The Padres pitching staff continues to perform at a high level with both Tyson Ross and Andrew Cashner now healthy, but their losses are almost always the result of a poor offensive showing. The Padres pitching staff allows them to be a great spoiler for contending teams in the final month of the season.
21. New York Mets (64-73) - The Mets went 12-17 in the month of August to end any playoff hopes that they had after their strong month of July. The great season for Mets first basemen Lucas Duda continued in August, as he is now firmly entrenched among the leaders in the National League for homeruns this season.
22. Chicago White Sox (62-75) - The White Sox had a rough month of August as Jose Abreu's power surge slowed down some. Abreu is going to finish among the American League leaders in each of the triple crown categories, as he looks to challenge what Miguel Cabrera was able to accomplish over the previous two seasons.
23. Philadelphia Phillies (62-74) - The Phillies put together a decent month of August, but it was not enough to save their season. A series loss to the Mets to finish the month, kept them in last place in the National League East entering the final month of the season. When rosters expand, Phillies fans will get the opportunity to see top prospect Maikel Franco as he will play corner infield in September for the Phillies.
24. Chicago Cubs (61-76) - The Cubs put together a solid month of August with many new faces on their roster after the trade deadline. Top prospects Jorge Soler and Javier Baez have provided power early on after getting called up, which has complemented Anthony Rizzo's power as he competes for the National League homerun title this season.
25. Boston Red Sox (60-76)- The Red Sox continued their season's pace in the month of August as they head towards a last place finish in the American League East this season. Their recent signing of Cuban centerfielder Rusney Castillo, gives Red Sox fans hope for next season as he will play along side fellow countrymen, cleanup hitterYoenis Cespedes, when he debuts for the Red Sox.
26. Minnesota Twins (59-77) - The Twins had a losing month of August as their last place season goes into its final stages. Rookie starting pitcher Trevor May already got a look in the big leagues during the month of August, and top prospect Alex Meyer could make his big league debut in September for the Twins as they put their strong future on display.
27. Houston Astros (59-79) - The Astros rough continued in August even though they were able to post a record that was one game over .500 for the month. Chris Carter won American League player of the week during August for his efforts as a power hitter. The young talent for the Astros continues to gain valuable experience, but without a potential ace in their future, Astros fans are left searching for reasons to have hope.
28. Arizona Diamondbacks (57-79) - The Diamondbacks month of August kept them on the pace that they have maintained most of the season. After entering the season with some expectations, the Diamondbacks have largely been a disappointment this season as they have frequented the bottom of the standings and the Power Rankings.
29. Colorado Rockies (54-82) - The Rockies rough season continued in August when Carlos Gonzales had season ending surgery to join shortstop Tulowitzki on the Rockies disabled list to finish the season. The month of September could feature the debut of Rockies top prospect Jonathan Gray, a flame throwing right hander with the large frame of a potential ace.
30. Texas Rangers (53-83) - The Rangers tough season continued in August as the injury bug continued to hit their roster. They reached the 59 player mark during the month, as injuries have caused them to well above and beyond the standard 40 man roster that supplements a teams 25 man roster to start the Major League Baseball season.