May 8, 2014, 4:29 PM EDT
Here are this week’s MLB Power Rankings featuring thoughts on each team from Mark Zuckerman, Chase Hughes and myself, Steve Roney:
1. Detroit Tigers (LW: 4) – Hughes: Detroit has the most wins in the A.L. and Miguel Cabrera is hitting .270. Yea, they’re pretty good.
2. San Francisco Giants (LW: 5) – Roney: Odd to see a winless Matt Cain, one of baseball’s iron horses on the mound, hit the DL. He’s been as durable as it gets for almost a decade.
3. Milwaukee Brewers (LW: 3) – Hughes: They’ve started to slip up lately, but the Brewers are starting to look like the best team in the NL Central division this season.
4. Oakland Athletics (LW: 2) – Roney: Atop their division thanks to the starting pitching turned in by a sure thing, a has-been, and a never-was. Different ingredients, always the same recipe for Billy Beane.
5. Colorado Rockies (LW: 10) – Roney: Desperately hoping that this is finally the year that Tulowitzki stays healthy through October. Baseball deserves that.
6. Atlanta Braves (LW: 1) – Zuckerman: 7-game losing streak brought them back to earth, but they’ll be fine over the long haul.
7. Washington Nationals (LW: 6) – Zuckerman: If they somehow never had to play the 1st inning, they’d be No. 1 in this poll!
8. Los Angeles Dodgers (LW: 8) – Roney: Yasiel Puig might be the only player who could make taking a fly ball off the face look impressively athletic. It’s the reverse-Canseco.
9. Miami Marlins – Zuckerman: This team is going to give people trouble all year. Lots of young talent.
10. St. Louis Cardinals (LW: 11) – Roney: Good to see vintage Wainwright last night – just an embarrassment of pitching riches in St. Louis.
11. Baltimore Orioles (LW: 15) – Zuckerman: Breathing a sigh of relief after Dr. Andrews says no surgery for Wieters’ elbow.
12. New York Yankees (LW: 7) – Zuckerman: Tanaka is carrying their entire pitching staff right now. Yanks fans would say that alone is worth his pricetag.
13. Texas Rangers (LW: 13) – Roney: Shin-Shoo Choo looks to be worth every bit of that contract. Of course, big-dollar free agents usually look to be worth it in the first month of a seven-year deal.
14. Seattle Mariners (LW: 19) – Roney: Robinson Cano, on the other hand, does not. Good thing he’s got a while in Seattle to sort it out.
15. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (LW: 14) – Roney: Raul Ibanez, at 42, finally looks like he’s running out of juice.
16. Chicago White Sox (LW: 20) – Hughes: If only they had more talent around Chris Sale in their rotation.
17. New York Mets (LW: 9) – Zuckerman: New York’s pitching staff has yet to record a hit this season. I’m shocked — shocked! — that Bartolo Colon isn’t better with the bat.
18. Boston Red Sox (LW: 18) – Zuckerman: Is there anybody in baseball who isn’t happy for Grady Sizemore every time he does something positive on the field?
19. Toronto Blue Jays (LW: 25) – Zuckerman: Jose Bautista is a man among boys.
20. Minnesota Twins (LW: 17) – Hughes: Perhaps Alex Meyer – who should be called up soon – can help out the Twins’ rotation which is a complete mess outside of Kyle Gibson.
21. Tampa Bay Rays (LW: 23) – Zuckerman: Struggles across AL East have kept them within striking distance, but it’s time for them to make a move.
22. Phialdelphia Phillies (LW: 16) – Zuckerman: They’ve been hanging around, but that bullpen is a disaster.
23. Cincinnati Reds (LW: 21) – Hughes: The Reds are having major trouble scoring runs, but they have the pitching to be a lot better than their record shows.
24. Kansas City Royals (LW: 12) – Hughes: James Shields and Wade Davis are off to great starts, so do the Royals look a little better now after the Wil Myers trade? They don’t? Okay, just checking.
25. Pittsburgh Pirates (LW: 24) – Hughes: I’m not sure they miss A.J. Burnett yet, but man that rotation is bad right now.
26. Cleveland Indians (LW: 27) – Hughes: It’s looking more and more like last year was a fluke. Even Carlos Santana is struggling.
27. San Diego Padres (LW: 22) – Roney: Four regulars (Alonso, Gyorko, Headley, Venable) below the Mendoza line. Ugly.
28. Chicago Cubs (LW: 28) – Hughes: Jeff Samardzija may be finally reaching his potential as an MLB ace. That’s about all that is going right for the Cubbies, though.
29. Arizona Diamondbacks (LW: 30) – Roney: With Trumbo out another month, it looks like Goldschmidt might have to do it all himself – a familiar feeling in the desert.
30. Houston Astros (LW: 29) – Hughes: The best batting average in their starting lineup is Jose Altuve’s .279, second-best is Jonathan Villar’s .250. They have only three regulars hitting above .225.
NL EAST STANDINGS
FRI: Nats at Mariners, 10:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Mariners, 9:10 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Mariners, 4:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Dodgers, 8:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Dodgers, 10:10 p.m.
WED: Nats at Dodgers, 4:10 p.m.
Full season schedule
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
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