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Week 18 MLB Power Rankings

Updated on July 30, 2012

Week 18 Power Rankings

Once again we have a new team atop the rankings. This week it is a first timer. I could have been writing these for a decade and I would still be able to say it is a first timer. If you haven't figured it out yet all you need to do is look below. In fact you probably saw it before you even read this. You straight-to-the-list person you.

1. Washington Nationals (61-40) They are tied with the Cincinnati Reds for the best record in baseball and are 8-2 in their last 10 including a wild victory over the Milwaukee Brewers Sunday night. Drew Storen is also back to help strengthen the bullpen. (Last Weeks Ranking 3)

2. New York Yankees (60-41) Speaking of bullpen help it appears Joba Chamberlain is poised to return to the Yankees. Many people thought he would be out for the year after a gruesome ankle injury. (LWR 1)

3. Cincinnati Reds (61-40) The Reds are hotter than hot and are currently riding a 10-game win streak. What could be better? News that Joey Votto is about to start doing baseball activities and return to this already potent lineup. (LWR 4)

4. Texas Rangers (59-41) Their division is suddenly top heavy as any of the top three teams could claim the title. I don't know who they could add before tomorrow's deadline but the Texas brass might pull something out of their hat. They might have to. (LWR 2)

5. Pittsburgh Pirates (58-43) The Pirates bolstered their pitching staff with the addition of Wandy Rodriguez and there are rumors floating that they are targeting Shin-Soo Choo of the Indians and his .862 OPS. (LWR 6)

6. Los Angeles Angels (55-47) They landed the prize of the trade deadline in Zack Greinke (9-3, 3.44 ERA, 1.20 WHIP) and seem to be bursting with star power. Now we will see if that translates to a division title and a deep playoff run. (LWR 6)

7. Atlanta Braves (57-44) I mentioned Ben Sheets last week so I won't this time around (even though he impressed again in his last start). Jason Heyward, however, has joined the 15/15 club this year. He is the 6th member in a resurgence of a year for him. (LWR 8)

8. San Francisco Giants (56-46) They were just swept by the Dodgers and have fallen back into a first-place tie with LA. They also lost Pablo Sandoval to the DL again. They only lost one spot in my rankings. Maybe I should rethink this one....(LWR 7)

9. Oakland Athletics (55-46) Remarkably the A's would be in the playoffs if they were to start today. After the fire sale of their pitching staff in the offseason who saw this coming? Put your hand down. Liar. (LWR 13)

10. Los Angeles Dodgers (56-47) Rumor has it that Ryan Dempster wants to go to LA. If they can find a way to add him they could surpass the Giants as the class of the NL West. (LWR 10)

11. Chicago White Sox (55-46) A month ago I couldn't believe how little they gave up to acquire Kevin Youkilis. Now they did it again in snagging Francisco Liriano away from the Twins. Kenny Williams, my hat is off to you. (LWR 11)

12. Detroit Tigers (54-48) This is on me Detroit. I waited all year for this and then I jumped on it. Then they crashed and burned. My apologies. (LWR 9)

13. St. Louis Cardinals (54-48) They have the best run differential (+94) in all of baseball. If either the Pirates or Reds slip they will be there to take advantage. (LWR 14)

14. Baltimore Orioles (53-49) Wei-Yin Chen struck out 12 batters on Sunday. He may be overshadowed by fellow import Yu Darvish but he has been Baltimore's best pitcher not named Jason Hammel. (LWR 12)

15. Tampa Bay Rays (53-49) David Price (14-4, 2.57 ERA, 1.16 WHIP) has to be one of the front-runners for the AL Cy Young award. He has been nothing short of spectacular this year. (LWR 15)

16.Toronto Blue Jays (51-50) The run on the AL East continues. The Jays were wrecked by injuries this year. Now it looks like Jose Bautista and his 27 homers won't be ready to come off the DL when first eligible. (LWR 17)

17. Boston Red Sox (51-51) They finally beat the Yankees (twice!) and wind up here more to round out the AL East in consecutive spots than they do by merit. Barely. (LWR 16)

18. Arizona Diamondbacks (51-51) They traded away Ryan Roberts and then gave up two nice prospects to acquire Chris Johnson who is basically the same player with less upside. Kind of confusing....(LWR 18)

19. Cleveland Indians (50-52) All the rumors surrounding the Tribe are that they will be sellers. We are less than 24 hours from the deadline but they haven't sold off any pieces as of yet. (LWR 20)

20. New York Mets (49-53) Matt Harvey made quite the debut last week striking out 11 in 5 1/3 innings against Arizona. The bright spot for Mets fans? He isn't even their best pitching prospect. That is Zack Wheeler who is in AA ball. (LWR 19)

21. Miami Marlins (47-54) They jettisoned star player Hanley Ramirez to the Dodgers. Just three years ago he was thought of as one of the best players in the game. My how the times have changed. My how saying that makes me feel old. (LWR 21)

22. Seattle Mariniers (47-57) Last week they unloaded Ichiro who has been an icon in Seattle for the past decade. Could Felix Hernandez be next? I don't think so. (LWR 23)

23. Philadelphia Phillies (45-57) They swept the lowly Brewers and Philly fans thought they were about to turn it around. Then they were swept by the Braves. Well, at least they locked up Cole Hamels (6-years $144 million). (LWR 24)

24. Milwaukee Brewers (45-56) Their bullpen is a mess. They have a 50% save conversion rate which is tied for worst in the majors. (LWR 21)

25. Minnesota Twins (43-58) As I mentioned earlier they gave away Liriano for nothing. They also have to deal with the loss of their hottest hitter Trevour Plouffe who has hit the DL. (LWR 26)

26. San Diego Padres (43-60) Thought to be sellers they locked up Carlos Quentin last week and just gave closer Huston Street a two-year $14 million deal. Guess they aren't selling in San Diego. (LWR 27)

27. Kansas City Royals (41-60) There was a line in Vegas this year with the over under on wins for KC at 80 (I think). I thought "Wow, take the under. Easy money." Too bad I didn't actually bet. (LWR 25)

28. Chicago Cubs (42-58) Since his callup the Cubs are 17-10 with Anthony Rizzo in the lineup. That is a good sign for the future in Chicago. (LWR 28)

29. Colorado Rockies (37-63) If I were a Rockie all I would be thinking is thank goodness for the Astros. (LWR 29)

30. Houston (L)Astros (35-68) OK, Lastros might be Bush League. But honestly I don't know what is uglier. The 12-game losing streak they just snapped or their 10-41 record on the road. Yikes. (LWR 30)

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    • beachbumaxp profile image

      beachbumaxp 4 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      Loved reading this! Now I'm a torn fan here. I grew up just outside of Washington, D.C., so I've been rooting for the Nats ever since they came to D.C., but having moved to CO 5 years ago when the Rockies made their run to the Series, it's tough to see them doing so abysmal! It's almost bitter sweet that they're near polar opposites. Great rankings, and go Nats!!!

    • Rich White profile image
      Author

      Rich 4 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Coming into the season I knew the Nats would be good, but I never expected this. I thought with the extra wild card they could surely contend but they have surpassed any expectations I had for them. Conversely as you mentioned, I can't believe how poorly the Rockies have been. They always seemed unpredictable to me but their starting pitching has fallen off a cliff this year. I feel bad for Michael Cuddyer who left the Twins for this team.

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