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MLB Power Rankings: Week 2

by April 9, 2019

MLB Power Rankings. Rankings like these are always up for debate, and discussion and that is what makes them so fun to take in. There is no objective measure, and the presence of subjective opinions make power rankings a fun exercise for everyone to partake in.

Power rankings are not simply a list of the teams from 1-30 in order of record. The MLB standings are designed for that purpose. Rather in power rankings, we are taking into account talent, health, record, run differential, potential, and rest of season projections.

  1. Los Angeles Dodgers (8-3)

The Los Angeles Dodgers have been on fire to start the season. Heading into Monday afternoon they sit at a major league-leading 8.4 runs per game. The Dodgers are undoubtedly armed with one of the best pitching staffs in baseball. If they can continue providing them with elite level run support, the Dodgers should have the best record in baseball when all is said and done.

  1. New York Yankees (5-5)

The Yankees are dealing with a lot of injuries but still look like the best team in the AL East. An elite bullpen coupled with one of the best rotations (when healthy) in baseball should help keep them afloat in the interim.

  1. Philadelphia Phillies (7-2)

The Philadelphia Phillies have had an impressive start to the season. Their starting rotation ranks among the best in baseball, and the arrival of Bryce Harper seems to have energized the offense. Much like with the Dodgers and Yankees, the Phillies can win their division if they continue to provide good run support for their starters.

  1. Houston Astros (6-5)

As you may have expected, the teams that top the power rankings at this time of the season are the most talented in baseball. The Astros have one of the best lineups in the league on both sides of the ball and have the ability to be a constant in the top five for the remainder of the season.

  1. Boston Red Sox (3-8)

The Red Sox somehow find themselves at 2-8 but are still one of the best teams in baseball. They should find a way to turn this around and pile up the wins. They are undoubtedly glad that the season lasts 162 games, giving them more than enough time to get themselves back into playoff position.

  1. Washington Nationals (4-5)

The Nationals have been a disappointment to start the season and currently sit fourth in the NL East at 4-4. They remain a team with one of the strongest rosters in baseball and should find their footing in the near future.

  1. St. Louis Cardinals (5-5)

The Cardinals have had a slow start to the season. Their roster talent suggests they will find a way to string some solid winning streaks together. There is no reason to panic at this juncture of the season.

  1. Milwaukee Brewers (8-3)

The Brewers started the season strong and look like they will be in the mix for the entirety of the season. The Brewers have one of the best lineups in baseball, and can only be held back by the questions marks regarding their rotation. They sit atop the NL Central but are only +2 in run differential.

  1. Chicago Cubs (3-7)

The MLB regular season is a marathon, not a sprint. Similar to some of the other teams in our top ten, the Chicago Cubs have had a rough start to the season. The Cubs have a potent lineup and a formidable rotation and should be able to turn things around in a hurry. There is no reason to overreact to team records at this point of the season.

  1. Atlanta Braves (6-4)

The Braves have, on paper, one of the most potent lineups in baseball, and have been rock solid at home. Getting swept in three road contests against the Phillies has had the side effect of skewing their record, and runs against. The Braves have been very strong outside that series and should be in the mix all season.

  1. Cleveland Indians (6-3)

Cleveland is one of the most intriguing teams in the American League. They have a rock-solid rotation and have a lineup good enough to compete in most games. They need to start scoring more runs, but help is on the way in the form of MVP candidate Francisco Lindor.

  1. New York Mets (6-3)

With the Mets making good on the promise many had them pegged with to start the season, the NL East has become the strongest division in baseball. The Mets have rather quietly assembled an enviable cache of assets and their play this season has and should continue to reflect that.

  1. Seattle Mariners (10-2)

The Mariners have been buoyed by some solid pitching this season. However, their runs scored per game is where they have truly impressed. They do not profile as a team that can keep up this torrid pace, but it goes to highlight their true upside. The Mariners will be a force to reckon with when locked in, and already have some impressive victories in their pockets.

  1. Tampa Bay Rays (8-3)

Tampa Bay somehow finds themselves at the top of the AL East through ten games of their schedule. The Rays have legit talent, but their starting pitching has been really impressive. They have allowed more than two runs just twice this season, and sit fifth in the league in run differential at +15. The Rays will have to prove that they can continue this level of play on a consistent basis to force their way up this list.

  1. Los Angeles Angels (5-6)

Still arguably among the best teams in their division, the Angels will have to find a way to navigate injuries if they are to have success this season. The Angels have won three straight, and sit at a mere -1 run differential, despite spending six of their ten games played on the road.

  1. Minnesota Twins (5-3)

The Minnesota Twins have some promise. They are an underrated team playing in one of the easiest divisions in baseball. They could find themselves much higher on this list if they can keep up their strong play.

  1. San Diego Padres (7-4)

The San Diego Padres suddenly became one of the most exciting teams in baseball when they announced that Fernando Tatis Jr., would start the season with the big club. Their pitching staff outside of Joey Luchessi is going to have to take some major steps if they are to qualify for the postseason.

  1. Colorado Rockies (3-8)

The Rockies are one of the more injury-depleted teams in the league. When healthy, they boast a formidable starting lineup, but their pitching is likely to hold them back. Their pitching staff is dealing with some injuries of their own, but a -23 run differential is atrocious regardless of the context.

  1. Oakland Athletics (6-8)

The Athletics have simply given up too many runs this season. They have scored a lot of runs which is some cause for optimism. However, addressing their runs allowed will be a critical step in transforming them from pretenders into contenders. In the end, the A’s do not seem to have the talent to be anything more than a middle of the road team. The Athletics will likely find themselves in the bottom half of these rankings all season.

  1. Pittsburgh Pirates (5-4)

The Pirates have some talent and have shown it through their first eight games of the season. They are +8 in run differential, but are scoring only 4.25 runs per game. They will likely need to step up their offensive output to support what looks like a talented, but inconsistent pitching staff.

  1. Kansas City Royals (2-7)

The Kansas City Royals have some intriguing talent. As their record indicates, however, talent alone is not enough to win games in the major leagues. The Royals are much closer to a .500 team than the .250 they currently sit at. They were dealt a big blow when star backstop Salvador Perez was lost for the season, and may not see themselves much higher than the mid-teens this season.

  1. Cincinnati Reds (1-8)

The Reds have a strong lineup, but still have major question marks with regard to their starting pitching. The Reds will need to start scoring runs to overcome their starting pitching issues. A -13 run differential just is not going to cut it.

  1. Arizona Diamondbacks (5-5)

The Diamondbacks have surrendered 6.7 runs per game, and sport a -6 run differential. The D’Backs have found a way to score runs, but their pitching staff is too inconsistent to give them any semblance of sustained success. Control issues plague their starters, and there is no easy fix for them. The Diamondbacks will be a team that causes some headaches but are not one that can be trusted to be anything more than a bottom of the pack team.

  1. Texas Rangers (5-5)

The Texas Rangers have more talent than their ranking here indicates. They have however shown their warts this season. They can compete, but look like a team that may finish the season under .500. The Rangers currently sit at -4 in run differential and have lost three straight contests. They are giving up entirely too many runs for their offense to overcome, and it stands to reason that this may be a reoccurring theme all season.

  1. Detroit Tigers (7-3)

This is where the truly bad begins. The Tigers have an uninspiring lineup from top to bottom and are not even true threats in their own division. They are ranked here based on some strong wins against the Toronto Blue Jays, as well as some eye-openers against the New York Yankees. The Tigers have been a nice storyline to begin the season, but regression to the mean is just around the corner.

  1. Chicago White Sox (3-6)

The White Sox certainly have some interesting pieces but are still a couple of years away from being able to compete. They should win some games and cause some headaches for their opponents this season but do not expect them to challenge in the AL Central.

  1. San Francisco Giants (3-8)

The Giants have enough talent to make a move up this list with a string of good games. They lack a standout talent on offense but have enough of a complete team to make some waves over the course of the season.

  1. Toronto Blue Jays (3-8)

This is a continuation of the tear down phase for the Blue Jays. One of the most overrated teams in baseball, the Blue Jays could find themselves at the bottom of this list before long. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. should be a part of the roster by June, but the Jays are one of the teams that are not even feigning a desire to win games this season.

  1. Baltimore Orioles (5-5)

The Baltimore Orioles have a depth chart that looks like a disaster. Content with being the whipping boys of the American League, the Orioles are resigned to taking their lumps this season.

  1. Miami Marlins (3-7)

The Orioles and Blue Jays will give the Marlins a run for their money for the worst team in baseball ‘honors.’ The Marlins, however, seemingly have zero interest in even pretending they are trying to compete. They will reside at, or near the bottom of this list for the entire season.

Raju Byfield is a featured writer at BettingPros. For more from Raju, check out his archive, and follow him @FantasyContext.