Skip to content

MLB Power Rankings: Angels, Pirates trending up

Jul 9, 2015, 4:00 PM EDT

Photo by USA Today

Here is a look at Major League Baseball with analysis from Nationals Insider Mark Zuckerman and Nationals writer Chase Hughes:

LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY

30. Phillies – Hughes: (LW: 30) Chase Utley just lost his job and got thrown under the bus by his GM along the way. What once was a great team continues to fall from grace.

29. Marlins – Hughes: (LW: 28) Dan Haren is pitching well at the age of 34. He’s got a 3.11 ERA over his last 10 starts.

28. Rockies – Hughes: (LW: 27) Troy Tulowitzki has been healthy this year and batting .318, yet he didn’t make the first All-Star cut and is part of the final vote.

27. Brewers – Hughes: (LW: 29) Milwaukee is 12-4 in their last 16 games. They have no chance in their division, but could salvage their season.

26. Athletics – Zuckerman: (LW: 26) Getting to be about that time for Billy Beane to do something dramatic.

25. Padres – Hughes: (LW: 23) Justin Upton, Craig Kimbrel and others are reportedly available for trade. Either one would be a huge boost for a contender.

24. White Sox – Zuckerman: (LW: 25) Chris Sale: Brilliant. Jeff Samardzija: Not so brilliant, but getting better.

23. Reds – Hughes: (LW: 22) Cincinnati is 5-0 against the Nats and 33-44 vs. everyone else.

22. Mariners – Zuckerman: (LW: 21) Nelson Cruz has been fantastic … yet this remains the least-productive lineup in the AL.

21. Red Sox – Zuckerman: (LW: 24) You want to write them off, but somehow they’re only 5 games back in AL East.

20. Indians – Zuckerman: (LW: 19) Corey Kluber’s last 11 starts: 2.57 ERA, 102 Ks, 15 BBs … and a 4-4 record. Run support, anybody?

19. Rangers – Zuckerman: (LW: 15) 1 1/2 years into his 7-year deal, Shin-Soo Choo has hit .237/.329/.383 with Texas.

18. Braves – Hughes: (LW: 18) Atlanta has hung around .500 all year, but their schedule after the All-Star break is brutal. They’ll see the Cubs and Dodgers at home before playing the Cardinals and Orioles on the road.

17. Rays – Zuckerman: (LW: 11) Have lost 10 of 11, three of them on walk-offs. Ouch.

16. Diamondbacks – Hughes: (LW: 20) Arizona is four games out of an NL Wild Card spot with the All-Star break approaching. They should be buyers ahead of the trade deadline.

15. Giants – Hughes: (LW: 9) The Giants have been incredibly streaky this year, but getting Hunter Pence back should make a big difference moving forward.

14. Tigers – Zuckerman: (LW: 16) Miguel Cabrera’s injury is a killer for this underachieving club.

13. Mets – Hughes: (LW: 17) Not sure why the Mets haven’t traded for some offense yet. Their best opportunity to catch the Nats is now with all their injuries.

12. Blue Jays – Zuckerman: (LW: 12) Run differential says they should be 51-36, which would be best record in AL.

11. Orioles – Zuckerman: (LW: 8) Just when you think it’s coming together, they drop 6 of 7.

10. Twins – Zuckerman: (LW: 14) Miguel Sano’s first week in the bigs: .455/.571/.682. No big deal.

9. Yankees – Zuckerman: (LW: 10) Getting just enough offensively to overcome other issues.

8. Angels – Zuckerman: (LW: 13) Here they come, finally starting to look like last year’s 98-win club.

7. Cubs – Hughes: (LW: 7) The Cubs’ pitching staff is sneaky good. They rank fifth in team ERA at 3.36 and seventh in rotation ERA at 3.15.

6. Nationals – Hughes: (LW: 6) What happens with Denard Span’s injury will be very interesting. They’ve proven they can win without some of their players, but right now he’s indispensable.

5. Dodgers – Hughes: (LW: 5) Have to love how Clayton Kershaw responded to not making the All-Star game. He pitched his 10th career shutout and added 11 strikeouts on Wednesday night.

4. Astros – Zuckerman: (LW: 2) Angels suddenly lurking right behind them. Houston: We may have a problem soon.

3. Pirates – Hughes: (LW: 4) Andrew McCuthen through his first 41 games this season: .253/.347/.440. And through his last 41: .352/.449/.559.

2. Royals – Zuckerman: (LW: 3) Flying high, but now they’ve got to overcome the loss of their best player, Alex Gordon.

1. Cardinals – Hughes: (LW: 1) St. Louis has lost six of their last 10, but they will have Matt Holliday back in the lineup within a few days.

LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY

  1. stoatva - Jul 9, 2015 at 4:43 PM

    18. Braves – Hughes: (LW: 18) Atlanta has hung around .500 all year, but their schedule after the All-Star break is brutal. They’ll see the Cubs and Dodgers at home before playing the Cardinals and Orioles on the road.

    This is cheery news.

    • bowdenball - Jul 9, 2015 at 4:50 PM

      The Mets’ schedule post-break is no picnic either: @Cardinals, @Nats, vs Dodgers, vs Padres, vs Nats. It eases up quite a bit the rest of the way after that, though, so late July is when we’ll find out if this is gonna be a coast to the division title a la 2014 or a tight race to the finish.

  2. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 9, 2015 at 7:59 PM

    “5. Dodgers – Hughes: (LW: 5) Have to love how Clayton Kershaw responded to not making the All-Star game. He pitched his 10th career shutout and added 11 strikeouts on Wednesday night.”

    I expect Kershaw will be added by Sunday.

  3. ArVAFan - Jul 9, 2015 at 8:47 PM

    Next time we complain about the (dis) information about Nats’ injuries:

    I realize that management doesn’t want to give out too much information, but I think the Mets have the Nats beat on this one.

    • virginiascopist - Jul 9, 2015 at 9:14 PM

      And I suspect we will soon be able to add to that list with Steven Matz’s injury being described by Mets management as “not serious.”

Archives

FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS

WLGB
NEW YORK9072
WASHINGTON83797.0
MIAMI719119.0
ATLANTA679523.0
PHILADELPHIA639927.0

ON THE RADIO

As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 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: 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.

Follow us on Twitter