Craig D’Alessandro’s MLB Power Rankings
Month 2: May
Well one month is in the books Ladies and Gents, and what an exciting first month of baseball it was!
What is this, Opposite season?
You take a look at those standings from every division and you have to say “Wow.” There really isn’t any one division that is turning out the way we thought it would. Teams that should be doing excellent (Angels, Red Sox, San Francisco, Detroit and Miami) are struggling out of the gate and teams that should be on the bottom (Cleveland, Atlanta, Oakland, and Baltimore) are really having very good seasons to start! It is just the first month, and we usually see things like this, but that will be a interesting storyline going forward.
The Future of Tomorrow, TODAY!
We are barley a month into the season and with the aforementioned teams ( LA, WAS, and BOS) struggling out of the gate (ok not Washington, but they were getting nothing out of their left field position) we are seeing a lot of the top prospects in MLB getting the call up to the Majors to try and make an impact. The Angels have had nothing going on , and with the MAJOR disappointment Albert Pujols has been, the Angels released Bobby Abreu and called up Top Prospect Mike Trout, while he hasn’t made a great impact yet, its only a matter of time before he is raking the ball.
The Washington Nationals are actually off to one of the best starts in baseball, but they had a luxury of needing only to upgrade one spot, and luckily for them, the spot that needed upgrading could be filled by their 19 year old phenom Bryce Harper, and he has been as advertised so far, I have really high hopes for this kid.
Finally we have our hometown Boston Red Sox, with Kevin Youkilis having an injured back, and the Red Sox offence needing a boast, the Red Sox have called up top Prospect Will Middlebrooks, who had a very good first game for the Red Sox, going 2-3 with a double, and even stealing a base. If you’re a fan of the show, and you should be, you know I am not a very big fan of mister Youk, so I am really rooting for Mr. Middlebrooks here.
The Year of the Pitcher
Last year, there were 3 no hitters/perfect games in the MLB. This year we already have two; WE’RE NOT EVEN 20% INTO THE SEASON YET! And this is not a surprising Item, offence is down throughout the league, except if your name is Matt Kemp, so would it really surprise me to see a few more no hitters this season? Heck no! I love this!
So without further Adie, your MSEN MLB Power Rankings:
No. 30: Minnesota Twins (Previous: 27)
Josh Willingham (.353 BA, 5 HR, 15 RBI) remains the team's offensive leader, while Joe Mauer (.325 BA, 1 HR, 13 RBI) continues to show he is finally healthy. However, they may have the worst pitching staff in baseball, and that will continue to keep them near the bottom of the rankings. Maybe the Metro dome would help them out…ohh wait…
No. 29: Kansas City Royals (Previous: 18)
Two losses to open the week pushed the Royals' losing streak to 12 games, but they rallied to take the final two games of their series with the Indians before splitting two games with the Twins for a modest 3-3 week. However, they are still 0-10 at home on the season. Which is really to bad, since the Royals have one of the best Parks in baseball.
Alex Gordon (.232 BA, 4 HR, 10 RBI) has begun to turn things around after moving out of the leadoff spot, and if Eric Hosmer (.188 BA, 5 HR, 13 RBI) could follow suit it would go a long way towards helping the team find some consistency.
No. 28: San Diego Padres (Previous: 21)
The Padres had a tough draw this week, facing the Nationals and Giants. They managed to win one game in each series for a 2-4 week.
Their pitching is starting to come around, and their bullpen has been terrific, but that doesn't mean much when they are not scoring runs. Carlos Quinton should soon be making some rehab assignment, and if he’s healthy he can be a force at the plate, Chris Denorfia (team-high .282 average) has moved into a starting spot in left field, but it's going to take a lot more than that for the Padres to turn things around.
No. 27: Houston Astros ( Previous: 30)
The offense has been solid, led by Jose Altuve (.373 BA) and J.D. Martinez (19 RBI), but the team desperately needs someone in the rotation to step up alongside Wandy Rodriguez (2-2, 1.72 ERA). But still…
No. 26: Miami Marlins (Previous: 11)
So far, the team has been perhaps the biggest disappointment in all of baseball, and it starts with their superstars as Jose Reyes and Hanley Ramirez are both hitting .205, while Josh Johnson sports a 5.34 ERA. Ugly, ugly start for the Fish, pull it together Boys!
No. 25: Chicago Cubs (Previous: 26)
The Cubs are in the midst of their best stretch of the season thus far, as they took two of three from the rival Cardinals before completing a 4-2 week with a victory over the Phillies on Sunday.Tony Campana (.435 BA, 6 SB, 6 R) has provided a spark taking over in center field for the departed Marlon Byrd. The starting rotation has also impressed, with Matt Garza throwing seven innings of one-hit ball to cap the week.
No. 24: Pittsburgh Pirates (Previous: 23)
The Pirates it seems can’t score a run to save their lives, dead last in the MLB but their pitching has been very impressive so far, ranking third in all of baseball.
No. 23: Oakland Athletics (Previous: 28)
The A's have struggled to find any consistency so far this season. They took two of three from the White Sox before dropping two of three to the Orioles over the weekend.
Despite having the worst team batting average in all of baseball at .205, the A's have managed to stay competitive thanks to their pitching staff. Recent call-up Jarrod Parker (6.1 IP, 1 ER, 5 Ks) could make the rotation even better after looking strong in his first start. Now they just need to find someone who can hit the ball.
No. 22: Colorado Rockies (Previous: 22)
A 2-4 week saw the Rockies drop two of three to both the Pirates and the Mets, although they did explode for 18 runs on Friday.
They acquired a good deal of starting pitching depth in the offseason, and they are already dipping into it as former A's starter Guillermo Moscoso was called up with Jeremy Guthrie on the disabled list. The rotation has undoubtedly been their weakness to this point, with just one starter (Jamie Moyer, 3.14) with an ERA under 4.00
.No. 21: Los Angeles Angels (Previous: 4)
After giving them the benefit of the doubt through the first three weeks of the season, a 1-5 week and the third-worst record in the American League simply can't be overlooked. The Angels were swept by the Rays and dropped two of three to the Indians before eking out a 2-1 win on Saturday.
The call-up of uber-prospect Mike Trout, who was hitting .403 in Triple-A, could be the spark the team needs to get things going. A hot streak by Albert Pujols (.216 BA, 0 HR, 4 RBI) certainly wouldn't hurt either.
No. 20: Seattle Mariners (Previous: 24)
The Mariners swept the Tigers in Detroit to open the week before dropping two of three to the Blue Jays at home, but they have to be happy with a 4-2 week against two of the league's top teams.
They tallied 30 runs in their four wins and just two in their two losses, a sign of how their season will go as they have the pitching to compete but will only be as good as their offense allows them.
No. 19: Chicago White Sox (Previous: 20)
The White Sox have been better than expected, led by Paul Konerko (.383 BA, 5 HR, 15 RBI) and Jake Peavy (3-1, 1.67 ERA), and their solid start could be enough to delay what was expected to be a full-blown rebuilding season.
No. 18: Milwaukee Brewers (Previous: 9)
There is little doubt that the team misses Prince Fielder's bat, and the struggles of Rickie Weeks (.193 BA) and Aramis Ramirez (.228 BA) have only magnified the loss. Their pitching staff may be a bigger concern though, as Randy Wolf (7.17 ERA) and Yovani Gallardo (6.08 ERA) have struggled mightily.
No. 17: Cleveland Indians (Previous: 19)
The starting pitching has been hit-or-miss, and the offense has no true standout player at this point, but they continue to win games and in what looks to be a wide-open AL Central.
No. 16: Philadelphia Phillies (Previous: 6)
The unexpected trio of Carlos Ruiz, Juan Pierre and Ty Wigginton are the only three everyday players with respectable averages, and Kyle Kendrick has struggled filling in for an injured Cliff Lee. All-in-all, things just don't look great in Philly right now.
No. 15: Cincinnati Reds (11-11, Previous: 15)
The Reds moved to second in the NL Central with a 4-2 week, as they captured two of three from both the Giants and Astros. Jay Bruce (.296 BA, 7 HR, 17 RBI) is on fire right now, as the highly touted offense is finally performing up to expectations. If the notoriously slow-starting Mat Latos (5.97 ERA) can start pitching like an ace, Cincinnati will be in pretty good shape.
No. 14: Boston Red Sox (Previous: 10)
Led by David Ortiz (.395 BA, 4 HR, 18 RBI), their offense has been solid despite a slow start from Kevin Youkilis and the absence of Carl Crawford and Jacoby Ellsbury. Their pitching continues to be a question mark, but as long as they continue to post double-digit run totals like they did three times last week, they will win games. The recent cold spurt against the A’s concern me though, this team is so hit or miss
No. 13: Arizona Diamondbacks (Previous: 13)
The team finally had enough of Josh Collmenter's struggles (9.82 ERA), moving him to the bullpen and calling up touted prospect Patrick Corbin (1.67 ERA, 27 IP at Double-A) to make his big league debut. As long as they can consistently score runs, they should be able to find a rotation that works with perhaps the youngest starting pitching depth in baseball.
No. 12: San Francisco Giants (Previous: 7)
Buster Posey (.353 BA, 4 HR, 9 RBI) has bounced back from his injury last season, but the offense is still struggling to score runs. The biggest stat of the week for the Giants, though, was Tim Lincecum's eight-inning, zero-run outing.
No. 11: New York Mets (Previous: 25)
New York be getting center fielder Andres Torres back from injury on Monday, shifting rookie Kirk Nieuwenhuis to left field which should improve the lineup moving forward. As long as their pitching staff keeps performing like they have, the Mets are on track to do much better than expected.
No. 10: Toronto Blue Jays (Previous: 16)
Edwin Encarnacion (.310 BA, 7 HR, 20 RBI) is 5-for-9 with three home runs and seven RBI in his last three games, and he's been moved to the cleanup spot in hopes of better protecting Jose Bautista. The real story, though, has been the team's starting pitching, as four of their five starters have ERAs under 4.00.
No. 9: Detroit Tigers (Previous: 1)
they released long-time Tiger Brandon Inge and lost Delmon Young indefinitely after he was arrested and charged with hate crime harassment. They will look to get things back on track against the Royals and White Sox this coming week, and still have to be considered among the AL favorites despite these hiccups.
No. 8: New York Yankees (Previous: 2)
They drop on this list due to the news that Michael Pineda is done for the year with a shoulder injury. With Phil Hughes (7.88 ERA) and Ivan Nova (5.18 ERA) struggling and Freddy Garcia (12.51 ERA) moved to the bullpen in favor of untested David Phelps, the rotation is once again a huge question mark.
No. 7: Baltimore Orioles (Previous: 29)
Well…quite a jump here, huh? With an offense that ranks 10th in runs scored and a pitching staff that ranks seventh in ERA, the O's are doing everything well right now. Five players have double-digit RBI, and J.J. Hardy (.181 BA) and Nick Markakis (.244 BA) are not among them. Once those two get going, the Orioles could be even better.
No. 6: Washington Nationals (Previous: 8)
I am still very much a believer in the Nats, as their pitching (2.33 team ERA) is going to keep them in most games. The call-up of Bryce Harper should allow them to get some much deserved national attention, and also gives them a boost not many teams can find from their farm system.
No. 5: Atlanta Braves (Previous: 14)
The team pulled a shocker of sorts when they sent 2011 All-Star Jair Jurrjens (9.37 ERA) down to Triple-A, but the move corresponded with Tim Hudson coming off the disabled list so Atlanta should be fine in the short-term.
The Braves are off to a good start, but there is a ton of room for improvement across the board.
No. 4: Los Angeles Dodgers (Previous: 17)
The offense has consisted almost exclusively of Matt Kemp (.425 BA, 11 HR, 24 RBI) and Andre Ethier (.277 BA, 5 HR, 24 RBI), and the rest of the team needs to start hitting around them. Also of note, Ted Lilly is very quietly 2-0 with a 0.90 ERA through three starts.
No. 3: St. Louis Cardinals (Previous: 12)
Outside of Adam Wainwright (7.32 ERA), the starting pitching has been phenomenal. At the plate, World Series MVP David Freese (.333 BA, 5 HR, 20 RBI) continues to carry an offense that has gotten consistent contribution up and down the lineup.
No. 2: Tampa Bay Rays (Previous: 5)
there is a lot to like about the Rays, from a deep offense that is light years better than last season to their immensely talented pitching staff. They could certainly challenge the Rangers for the top spot in the near future.
No. 1: Texas Rangers (Previous: 3)
Josh Hamilton (.395 BA, 9 HR, 25 RBI) continues to be the AL version of Matt Kemp, while the rest of the offense is doing its part with five players tallying double-digit RBI. The Rays showed that the Rangers are human, but there is still little question that Texas sports the best team in baseball right now.
The Texas Rangers have advanced to there 2nd straight World Series after they took down the Detroit Tigers Last Night in Game 6 of the ALCS 15-5. Michael Young and Nelson Cruz both hit Home Runs off of Brad Penny in the 7th.
The game took a turn for the worst for the Detroit Tigers as a 9 run 3rd inning for the Rangers capped things off. Michael Young started with a double which would drive in Elvis Andrus and Josh Hamilton. Adrian Beltre would then single to Center to drive in Michael Young. David Murphy then singled to center to drive in Beltre and Nopoli. Ian Kinsler would continue the 3rd inning rally with a single to left to drive in 2 more runs and then Michael Young in his second at bat of the inning would double to right field which drove in Kinsler and Andrus.
The Texas Rangers will advance to the World Series for there 2nd year in a row and will take on the winner of the NLCS either the Milwaukee Brewers or St. Louis Cardinals. The National League winner will have home field advantage as they won the All Star Game.
L: M. Scherzer (0-1)
Nelson Cruz hits a 3 Run Homer in the 11th to help the Texas Rangers go up 3-1 in the ALCS as the Rangers cruise to a 7-3 victory.
The St. Louis Cardinals are up 2-1 in the NLCS after they defeat the Brewers 4-3. Chris Carpenter bests Yovani Gollardo.
A team source told the newspaper that Terry Francona was distracted by marital issues and his use of pain medication last season, allegations the former Red Sox manager has strongly denied.
"It makes me angry that people say these things because I've busted my (butt) to be the best manager I can be," Francona said when the Globe presented him with its findings. "I wasn't terribly successful this year, but I worked harder and spent more time at the ballpark this year than I ever did."
Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia had plenty to say. Speaking to WEEI from vacation in Mexico he couldn't believe someone from the organization would talk that way about Francona, who "had everyone's back since Day 1."
"He's protected every single guy in that clubhouse and that's why I respect him like you can't believe," Pedroia said. "Whatever job he gets, if he needs me for a couple of games or whatever just let me know, I'll go play for free. That's how I care about this guy. This guy is my family.
"For him to have to deal with this, he's the best manager in the history of the Red Sox organization. He won two World Series, look at the run that he had there, it's pretty remarkable. That's the part that hurts and whoever the person it is that's saying this I think they need to take a step back and kind of look in the mirror and understand what they're saying about a guy. A lot of guys in this organization have his back and I'm one of them."
Papi out of Beantown Next Year?
Longtime Boston Red Sox slugger and free-agent-to-be David Ortiz spoke about the possibility of signing with the AL East rival New York Yankees during an interview Wednesday with ESPN's Colleen Dominguez, after expressing frustration with the state of the Red Sox, who've seen manager Terry Francona and general manager Theo Epstein leave in the wake of the team's September collapse.
"There's too much drama, man," Ortiz told Dominguez in reference to the Red Sox. "There's too much drama. I have been thinking about a lot of things. I don't know if I want to be part of this drama for next year."
Boston Bruins fall to 1-3 as they lost to the Carolina Hurricanes Wednesday 3-2
The Chicago Cubs have reportedly agreed with Theo Epstein on a 5 year close to $20 Million Dollar Deal for Theo to become the new President of the Cubs.
The Boston Globe has released an article written by Bob Hohler which digs into the problems with the Red Sox ownership, atmosphere in the club house and accuses certain players of being careless to the team.
"The indifference of Beckett, Lester, and Lackey in a time of crisis can be seen in what team sources say became their habit of drinking beer, eating fast-food fried chicken, and playing video games in the clubhouse during games while their teammates tried to salvage a once-promising season."
Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony have mentioned that players may start their own league if NBA Lock Out wipes out the 2011-2012 NBA Season.
Tigers win game three 5-2 against the Rangers on Tuesday and now trail 2-1 in the Best of 7 ALCS.
Game 4 is this afternoon at 4:15pm
The Cardinals and Brewers are knotted up at 1-1 in the NLCS, Game 4 is tonight at 8:05 PM.
The New York Jets have traded WR Derrik Mason to the Houston Texans for an undisclosed 3rd Round Draft Pick
Looking for a fun Read Check out Jessica Dempsey's article about the Come Back Kids, The Detroit Lions! Click Read More for Article!
Nelson Cruz hits a walk off grand slam and the Texan Rangers take a 2 game lead over the Tigers after Monday Night's 7-3 victory!
Meetings between the NBA players and owners are over, sides remain very far apart, The First two Weeks of the NBA season have officially been Cancelled.
Colorado Avalanche take down the Boston Bruins 1-0. The Bruins are now 1-2 on the season and head to Carolina to take on the Hurricanes Wednesday Night at 7:30.
The red hot St. Louis Cardinals took down the Milwaukee Brewers in Game 2 12-3 to tie up the NLCS at 1-1.
The Detroit Lions beat up on the Chicago Bears on the first Monday Night Football game in Detroit since 2001, 24-13 and the Lions are now 5 and 0 for their first time since 1956.
--In the MLB playoffs the New York Yankees were eliminated earlier this week by the Detroit Tigers, The Tampa Bay Rays were also eliminated by the Texas Rangers.
---Last night the Milwaukee Brewers took down the Arizona Diamondbacks winning game 5 3-2, the game went 10 innings.
---The St. Louis Cardinals finished off the Philadelphia Phillies 1-0 in game 5 to knock them out and shock the world.
---The ALCS is set to begin tonight at 8pm as the Detroit Tigers send Justin Verlander to the mound to take on the Texas Rangers C.J. Wilson.
High School Football Action Tonight Thursday 10-6-2011!
Millis-Hopedale - 39 Ashland - 7
Framingham - 36 Braintree - 6
Norwood - 0 #13 Walpole - 13
#8 Lincoln-Sudbury - 49 Waltham - 6
Westboro - 47 North-Middlesex - 20
Westwood - 28 Medfield - 7
Franklin - 21 Foxboro - 29
Holliston - 51 Bellingham - 30
Dover-Sherborn - 7 Hopkinton - 28
#20 King Phillip - 28 Oliver-Ames - 13
Mansfield - 49 Sharon - 19
Norton - 6 Medway - 35
Natick - 49 Dedham - 19
Stoughton - 21 North Attleborough - 22
IS THERE A TEAM YOU WANT FOLLOWED OR BROADCASTED LET US KNOW! MASPORTSWEB@GMAIL.COM or Email the Owner Directly TNappi@masportsweb.com
The Boston Bruins drop their season opener against The Philadelphia Flyers 2-1, Brad Marchand the only goal for the Bruins.
The Detroit Tigers knock out the New York Yankees as they win game 5 of the ALDS 3-2.
L: I. Nova (1-1)
S: J. Valverde (2)
Former White Sox 3B Robin Ventura to take over as Chicago White Sox Manager in place of Ozzie Guillen
Peyton Manning Still Hopes to Play in 2011
3-1 Milford High School Battles St. Peter Marian Saturday at 6pm
Miami Dolphins QB Chad Henne Out for the Season
Boston Bruins Lift Stanley Cup Banner
Terry Francona to take Color Announcing Role for ALCS