Pittsburgh’s reign as the team with baseball’s best record was short lived, as the St. Louis Cardinals have taken that title back. As a sidekick to that award, the Cards also maintained a stranglehold on the top spot in KP’s MLB Power Rankings at The Wife Hates Sports. Specifically, St. Louis opened up a 41-point lead on the second place Red Sox, gaining sixteen ratings points on Boston over the last seven days.
Elsewhere, the Detroit Tigers followed up last week’s abysmal showing with the biggest gain in the rankings. The red-hot Tampa Bay Rays also posted big numbers and climb back into the top ten. Specifically, here are the five teams with the biggest ratings gain over the last week:
Detroit Tigers: +46 points
Tampa Bay Rays: +37 points
Seattle Mariners: +24 points
Oakland Athletics: +23 points
Los Angeles Dodgers: +23 points
The slumping Padres have lost ten straight and posted the worst week, dropping 44 ratings points, and overall, here are the five teams that saw the biggest decline:
San Diego Padres: -44 points
Cleveland Indians: -33 points
Miami Marlins: -29 points
Colorado Rockies: -26 points
Pittsburgh Pirates: -24 points
The entire list of MLB Power Rankings are as follows, featuring a stat for each of the thirty teams, while highlighting the clubs that had positive or negative jumps in the latest poll:
KP’s MLB Power Rankings: July 9, 2013
Note: Statistics and point totals as of Tuesday morning (7/9/13) and do not include night games
1. St. Louis Cardinals (168 points) – Last Week: #1 (+15)
Both Shelby Miller and Lance Lynn have been great in the St. Louis rotation, but Adam Wainwright still leads the team in wins (11), ERA (2.36) and strikeouts (117).
2. Boston Red Sox (127 points) – Last Week: #2 (-1)
The Red Sox made plenty of offseason acquisitions, but this remains a team that is anchored by David Ortiz (.318 AVG, 17 HR and 61 RBI) and Dustin Pedroia (.320 AVG, 5 HR and 50 RBI).
3. Detroit Tigers (125 points) – Last Week: #8 (+46)
It would really come as a shock if manager Jim Leyland didn’t give Max Scherzer (13-0, 3.06 ERA, 146 K’s) the starting nod for the American League in the All-Star Game.
4. Atlanta Braves (113 points) – Last Week: #5 (+10)
He’s getting next to no press, but Mike Minor (8-4, 3.05 ERA, 108 K’s, 13 quality starts) deserves to be mentioned in the National League Cy Young race.
5. Oakland Athletics (112 points) – Last Week: #6 (+23)
One of the bigger All-Star snubs this year, Josh Donaldson currently leads the A’s in batting average (.319), HR (15), RBI (58), OBP (.386) and hits (104).
6. Texas Rangers (99 points) – Last Week: #4 (-11)
Yu Darvish has not pitched seven innings in each of his last four starts, and he walked at least four batters in two of those appearances.
7. Pittsburgh Pirates (97 points) – Last Week: #3 (-24)
While his average (.249) and strikeout total (104 in 285 AB’s) are highly questionable, Pedro Alvarez can still rake, and currently leads the Pirates in both HR (22) and RBI (57).
8. Tampa Bay Rays (93 points) – Last Week: #11 (+37)
In his first two starts since returning from the disabled list, David Price is 2-0, pitching 16 innings, giving up just 11 hits and one run, while striking out 15 batters.
9. Cincinnati Reds (87 points) – Last Week: #7 (+8)
Joey Votto and Jay Bruce have combined to slug 33 home runs and drive in 100 total runs.
10. Arizona Diamondbacks (62 points) – Last Week: #12 (+19)
Paul Goldschmidt continues to easily be Arizona’s most potent bat, posting team highs in batting average (.310), HR (21), RBI (74), OBP (.389) and hits (103).
11. Baltimore Orioles (55 points) – Last Week: #9 (-13)
In his first two starts with the Orioles, Scott Feldman is 0-1, with a 7.15 ERA spanning 11 1/3 IP.
12. Kansas City Royals (42 points) – Last Week: #13 (+3)
There has been a power outage in K.C. this season, as no player on the Royals’ roster has a double-digit number of home runs. Alex Gordon and Eric Hosmer lead the team with nine.
13. New York Yankees (40 points) – Last Week: #17 (+18)
Mariano Rivera (1.89 ERA, 29 saves) blew a save over the weekend, allowing a home run to Baltimore’s Adam Jones in the 9th inning. That was just his second home run allowed on the season.
14. Los Angeles Angels (38 points) – Last Week: #15 (+6)
Don’t look now, but Josh Hamilton has a 12-game hit streak and has raised his average nearly thirty points, since June 23rd. He’s also batting .318 so far in the month of July.
15. Los Angeles Dodgers (29 points) – Last Week: #19 (+23)
Zack Greinke may be 7-2 on the season, but he has just 59 K’s in 76 innings, with a 3.91 ERA and 1.37 WHIP, each higher than his career averages.
16. Cleveland Indians (26 points) – Last Week: #10 (-33)
Over his last ten games played, Mark Reynolds has just five hits, compared to 15 strikeouts.
17. Washington Nationals (26 points) – Last Week: #16 (+2)
It’s hard to believe that with numbers like these, Stephen Strasburg (5-6, 2.45 ERA, 1.06 WHIP and 107 K’s in 106 1/3 IP) did not make the All-Star team.
18. Colorado Rockies (11 points) – Last Week: #14 (-26)
They aren’t gaudy numbers, but in his first 66 games at the Major League level, Nolan Arenado has held his own both offensively (.250 AVG, 7 HR, 26 RBI) and defensively.
19. Toronto Blue Jays (9 points) – Last Week: #18 (-10)
With the hype they brought with them to Canada, Mark Buehrle (5-5, 4.50 ERA), R.A. Dickey (8-9, 4.77 ERA) and Josh Johnson (1-3, 4.89 ERA) have really disappointed.
20. Chicago Cubs (6 points) – Last Week: #20 (+5)
Thanks to his recent hot streak, trade candidate Alfonso Soriano now leads the Cubs in both home runs (13) and stolen bases (10).
21. Philadelphia Phillies (-2 points) – Last Week: #23 (+16)
Cliff Lee, Kyle Kendrick and Cole Hamels have combined to post 39 quality starts so far this season.
22. New York Mets (-11 points) – Last Week: #24 (+13)
Since their recent promotion/acquisition with the Mets, Josh Satin (.375 AVG in 20 games) and Eric Young Jr. (.299 AVG, 19 games) have made a significant impact on the offense.
23. San Francisco Giants (-27 points) – Last Week: #21 (-19)
Like the aforementioned trio in Toronto, Barry Zito (4-6, 4.44 ERA), Tim Lincecum (4-9, 4.61 ERA) and Matt Cain (5-5, 4.85 ERA) have been equally as disappointing for the Giants.
24. Seattle Mariners (-35 points) – Last Week: #28 (+24)
The Mariners have zero regulars batting over the .300-mark on the season. Kyle Seager (.287 AVG in 87 games) currently has the team’s best average.
25. Milwaukee Brewers (-47 points) – Last Week: #27 (+8)
Prime trade candidate Yovani Gallardo has seen his ERA balloon up to 4.85 in recent weeks.
26. Minnesota Twins (-52 points) – Last Week: #25 (-23)
The Twins are lacking a premier power hitter, as Josh Willingham currently leads the team in home runs, slugging just ten at this point in the season.
27. San Diego Padres (-58 points) – Last Week: #22 (-44)
Jason Marquis (9-4, 3.79 ERA, 12 quality starts) could be an interesting trade chip for teams that are currently looking for a veteran starter that doesn’t carry a hefty price tag.
28. Chicago White Sox (-67 points) – Last Week: #26 (-19)
Underachieving offensively in previous seasons, Gordon Beckham is currently batting .338, with 46 hits in 136 at bats so far this season.
29. Miami Marlins (-88 points) – Last Week: #29 (-29)
With Ricky Nolasco traded away to L.A., Jose Fernandez (5-5, 2.83 ERA) is the clear anchor to this young Miami starting rotation.
30. Houston Astros (-122 points) – Last Week: #30 (-12)
While his average (.228) and strikeout total (120 in 281 AB’s) are quite questionable, Chris Carter can still rake, and currently leads the Astros in both HR (17) and RBI (46).
* 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.