Mar 14, 2013; Clearwater Beach, FL, USA; A detail of a major league baseball at Clearwater Beach. Spring Training for MLB is held throughout the Florida from early February to late March annually. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Power Rankings: Week 1


Each Monday, Rising Apple will be unveiling our weekly MLB Power Rankings.  Season expectations will of course be taken into account (for example, if a perennial contender is 2-4, it’s unlikely they’ll be in the bottom 10).  However, the rankings will not ignore teams that are off to scintillating starts if that start doesn’t match their expectations.


Here are the rankings for Week 1:

1. Atlanta Braves  (5-1)
Justin Upton is off to a ridiculously hot start (he has 5 homers in 22 at bats).  The Braves will have to hope he keeps up that pace, since first baseman Freddie Freeman was placed on the disabled list Sunday with a strained right oblique.
2. Washington Nationals (4-2)
N/A The Nationals are viewed as the deepest team in the game, and they didn’t do anything to debunk that during the first week.
3. Cincinnati Reds (4-2)
N/A Their pitching and offense were equally impressive as Cincinnati took back to back series against the Angels and Nationals to open the year.
4. Los Angeles Dodgers (4-2)
N/A The Dodgers’ pitching staff as a whole has been doing a Clayton Kershaw impression.  Los Angeles has given up only 10 runs this season, the least in baseball.
5. Detroit Tigers (3-3)
N/A After winning their first 2 home games, the Tigers and ace Justin Verlander were humbled by the Yankees 7-0 on Sunday.
6. Oakland Athletics (5-2)
Oakland has been paced by Jed Lowrie (he’s hitting .500) and Coco Crisp (who has scored 9 runs).
7. Tampa Bay Rays (3-3) N/A Ace David Price was annihilated by Cleveland on Sunday.  Tampa now hits the road to face Texas.
8. Texas Rangers (4-2)
N/A The story of the Rangers’ first week was Yu Darvish and his near perfect game.  If Darvish continues to come into his own, Texas could be a force.
9. St. Louis Cardinals (3-3)
N/A After opening the season 1-3, the Cardinals righted the ship by taking 2 straight against the Giants.
10. Arizona Diamondbacks (5-1)

Arizona’s offense has been tremendous thus far.  They’ll look to keep it going Monday during their home opener against Pittsburgh.

11. Los Angeles Angels (2-4)
Josh Hamilton has had a forgettable start for the Angels.  He has 4 hits in 25 at bats to go along with 10 K’s.
12. Colorado Rockies (5-1)
N/A After dropping their season opener, the Rockies reeled off 5 in a row against Milwaukee and San Diego.  They’ll get a stiffer test this week against San Francisco.
13. San Francisco Giants (3-3) N/A The Giants’ offense has been dreadful (15 runs scored over their first 6 games).  Fortunately for San Fran, they have Matt Cain, Ryan Vogelsong, and Madison Bumgarner to mask their offensive woes.
14. Chicago White Sox (4-2) N/A Chris Sale has picked up right where he left off last year.  The Sox will get an early test as they head to Washington to play the Nats beginning on Tuesday.
15. Baltimore Orioles (3-3) N/A As Chris Davis cooled off after his insanely hot start, the O’s dropped 2 in a row.
16. New York Mets (4-2)
The Mets hit the road Monday for a trip to Philadelphia, Minnesota, and Colorado after taking care of business at home against San Diego and Miami.
17. Boston Red Sox (4-2)
N/A Boston’s solid start had cold water thrown on it when John Lackey exited Saturday’s start with an injury to his biceps.
18. Cleveland Indians (3-3)
N/A After opening 2-0, the Indians dropped 3 in a row (which included Trevor Bauer taking a beating) before blowing out Tampa on Sunday.
19. Kansas City Royals (3-3) N/A Fresh off a series win in Philadelphia, the Royals open their home slate Monday against Minnesota.
20. Toronto Blue Jays (2-4) N/A R.A. Dickey has been too good over the last 3 seasons for Toronto to brace itself for his fall to Earth, but his start to the season (8.44 ERA, 3 HR allowed, a WHIP close to 2.00) has been a bit alarming.
21. Minnesota Twins (4-2)
The Twins have had a fine start to the season, but they’ll have to keep it up in order to rise further in the rankings.
22. New York Yankees (2-4)
N/A The Yankees got a much needed win over Justin Verlander and the Tigers on Sunday.  Still, the Bombers are both severely undermanned on offense and dealing with a starting rotation that’s been a huge disappointment thus far.
23. Seattle Mariners (3-4) N/A Michael Morse has exploded for 5 homers over Seattle’s first 7 games.  Morse and the M’s will hope to fatten up against Houston this week.
24. Philadelphia Phillies (2-4) N/A The Phillies have allowed the most runs in baseball (41), which has overshadowed Chase Utley‘s solid start.  Struggling Roy Halladay takes the mound Monday for their series opener against the Mets.
25. Chicago Cubs (2-4) N/A The Cubs’ offense has generated 14 runs over their first 6 games.  The only team that’s scored less is their division rival, Pittsburgh.
26. Milwaukee Brewers (1-5) N/A
After yesterday’s extra inning loss to Arizona, the Brewers are losers of five in a row as they head into Chicago to face the Cubs.
27. Pittsburgh Pirates (1-5)
N/A Pittsburgh has allowed the second fewest runs in baseball (16).  The problem?  Their anemic offense, which has scored 8 runs over their first 6 games.
28. Houston Astros (1-5) N/A The Astros have fallen flat on their faces after their opening night win against Texas.
 29. Miami Marlins (1-5)
N/A In phenom Jose Fernandez, the Marlins have something to look forward to in a season that’s expected to resemble their dreadful first week.
 30. San Diego Padres (1-5)

N/A The Padres have the worst run differential in baseball (-26).  Unfortunately for them, their catalyst Chase Headley is still a ways away from his return from the disabled list.

Tags: MLB Power Rankings

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