The Los Angeles Dodgers have earned a spot at the top of the totem pole, snagging first place in KP’s most recent edition of MLB Power Rankings.
The Dodgers finished the month of May by getting swept in a four-game set against the Milwaukee Brewers, leaving many critics to assume that L.A. would finally begin to relinquish its lead to either the Giants or Diamondbacks.
The month of June opened with ten games on the road, in which the Dodgers managed to win seven of them, retaking baseball’s top record. Cracking the top five in both ERA and batting average, the Dodgers now own a comfortable lead in this week’s Power Rankings.
The Texas Rangers fall one spot to second place, while the red-hot New York Yankees continue to climb up the charts and sit in third place. The surging Atlanta Braves jumped eleven spots this week, landing in the top five.
Here’s where each team ranks in KP’s latest edition of MLB Power Rankings, featuring a few stats, thoughts and figures for each of the teams that made major moves (up or down) in this week’s poll.
KP’s MLB Power Rankings: June 11, 2012
*Stats, records and information as of Sunday June 10, 2012
1. Los Angeles Dodgers – 39-22 (129 points) – Last Week: #3
2. Texas Rangers – 35-26 (115 points) – Last Week: #1
3. New York Yankees – 34-25 (95 points) – Last Week: #5
4. Washington Nationals – 35-23 (90 points) – Last Week: #4
5. Atlanta Braves – 34-26 (80 points) – Last Week: #16
Before Sunday’s blowout loss at the hands of the Blue Jays, the Braves had previously won six straight games, holding opponents to three runs or less in each game and sweeping the Miami Marlins on the road during that stretch.
6. Chicago White Sox – 33-27 (79 points) – Last Week: #2
The White Sox still have a hold onto the AL Central division lead, but have recently dropped five of its last eight games, in which the team allowed eight or more runs in four of those losses.
7. Tampa Bay Rays – 35-25 (75 points) – Last Week: #9
8. St. Louis Cardinals – 31-30 (73 points) – Last Week: #11
Despite being just one game above the .500 mark, the Cardinals have the second best run differential in Major League Baseball and the second best team batting average. Because of these stats and more, St. Louis has managed to remain in the top ten.
9. San Francisco Giants – 34-27 (72 points) – Last Week: #7
10. Los Angeles Angels – 32-29 (65 points) – Last Week: #13
Torii Hunter and Albert Pujols have combined to bat .344 with 5 HR and 18 RBI so far in the month of June. Mike Trout has 19 hits in nine June games and the Angels’ offense is starting to wake up.
11. Baltimore Orioles – 34-26 (54 points) – Last Week: #15
The Orioles won its ninth consecutive extra innings game on Sunday, which is a new franchise record. Baltimore is 9-2 on the season in extra inning ballgames.
12. Arizona Diamondbacks – 30-30 (51 points) – Last Week: #20
The surging D’Backs posted a +18 run differential over the last week and saw a significant jump in both its pitching and hitting ranking. Arizona reached the .500 mark over the weekend and could finally be waking up.
13. Cincinnati Reds – 32-27 (47 points) – Last Week: #6
The Reds have been involved in one-run games over each of its last five contests, three of which ended in losses. Last night’s loss to the Tigers allowed the Pirates to earn a share of the division lead with Cincinnati.
14. Pittsburgh Pirates – 32-27 (44 points) – Last Week: #19
The Pirates have the largest differential between its pitching and hitting rankings. Pittsburgh owns MLB’s third best overall team ERA, but has the worst team batting average in the National League and the second worst batting average in baseball.
15. Toronto Blue Jays – 31-29 (44 points) – Last Week: #17
16. Boston Red Sox – 29-31 (36 points) – Last Week: #12
Still lagging in the pitching department, the Red Sox did see the return of Dice-K in its pitching rotation over the weekend. Struggling starter Daniel Bard was demoted to AAA. Boston currently has the third worst team ERA in baseball.
17. Philadelphia Phillies – 29-33 (33 points) – Last Week: #10
The floundering Phillies are just 2-8 in the month of June. The team’s combined pitching and hitting rank is actually higher than the likes of the Yankees, Nationals, Braves, White Sox and Rays, yet is not translating into wins on the field.
18. Cleveland Indians – 32-27 (23 points) – Last Week: #22
The Indians survived a tough six-game road stretch, officially going 4-2 against the Tigers and Cardinals. But even while being just a half-game back in the division, Cleveland could use some pitching help, as only Boston and Minnesota have a worse team ERA in the AL.
19. Detroit Tigers – 28-32 (17 points) – Last Week: #21
20. New York Mets – 32-29 (12 points) – Last Week: #14
The Mets lost six of seven games last week, capped off by a sweep at the hands of the crosstown rival Yankees.
21. Miami Marlins – 31-29 (10 points) – Last Week: #8
No team had a worse week than the Marlins. Dropping 13 spots in this week’s poll, Miami went 0-6 last week, posting a hideous -33 run differential over the last seven days.
22. Kansas City Royals – 24-34 (-3 points) – Last Week: #18
The Royals are just 3-6 in the month of June and have recently dropped four straight games, including a three-game sweep on the road at the hands of the suddenly red-hot Pirates.
23. Milwaukee Brewers – 28-32 (-4 points) – Last Week: #25
24. Seattle Mariners – 27-35 (-8 points) – Last Week: #24
25. Oakland Athletics – 26-35 (-15 points) – Last Week: #27
26. Colorado Rockies – 24-35 (-22 points) – Last Week: #23
The Rockies have lost five straight games, giving up six or more runs in each of the team’s losses since Tuesday. In three of those defeats, the Rockies gave up ten or more runs. On the season, Colorado’s pitching staff owns a major league worst 5.31 team ERA.
27. Houston Astros – 26-34 (-24 points) – Last Week: #26
28. Minnesota Twins – 24-35 (-33 points) – Last Week: #28
29. Chicago Cubs – 20-40 (-70 points) – Last Week: #29
30. San Diego Padres – 20-41 (-75 points) – Last Week: #30
* All stats per MLB.com
Note: RED = Falling 3+ spots from last week, GREEN = Rising 3+ spots from last week
The Wife Hates Sports MLB Power Rankings system has a method to its madness, attempting to be different and not just rank by popularity and record. It mixes a secret formula of six completely different categories, meshed into a points system. The categories don’t just include team results regarding record, but how each team has performed recently, as well as incorporating some statistics on both a team’s offense and pitching staff, too.