MLB Power Rankings: Week 13

Jun 30, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates third base coach Nick Leyva (left) high fives Pirates pinch hitter Russell Martin after Martin hit a game winning RBI single against the Milwaukee Brewers during the fourteenth inning at PNC Park. The Pittsburgh Pirates won 2-1 in fourteen innings. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

There was a change at the top of the rankings, as the surging Pirates knocked the Cardinals from their perch.

Here are the rankings for Week 13:

RANKING/TEAM/RECORD
LAST WK/CHANGE
THOUGHTS
1. Pittsburgh Pirates (51-30)
2               ^ 1 The Pirates have won 9 games in a row to take over the best record in baseball and first place in the N.L. Central (they’re 2 games up on St. Louis).  Pittsburgh, who teased their fans last year before finishing under .500 yet again, may actually have staying power this season.
2. Boston Red Sox (50-34)
6               ^ 4 Boston had a 5-1 week, and put some distance between themselves and the third and fourth place teams in the A.L. East (the Rays and Yankees).  The Orioles, however, are still hanging around.  They’re just 2.5 games behind the Red Sox for first place.
3. St. Louis Cardinals (49-32)
1               – 2 The Cardinals have fallen off a bit lately, going 4-6 over their last 10 games to cede first place to Pittsburgh and drop from the top spot in the rankings.
4. Texas Rangers (48-34)
5              ^ 1 Outfielder Nelson Cruz is quietly having a very good season.  He’s hitting .271 with 20 home runs and 61 RBI’s for first place Texas.
5. Atlanta Braves (48-34)
7              ^ 2
The Braves are winners of 3 straight, and have a comfortable 6.5 game lead in the N.L. East.  Still, B.J. Upton and Jason Heyward are having horrible seasons, and Justin Upton has been brutal for roughly 2 months.  Atlanta should be wary of Washington.
6. Oakland Athletics (48-35)
8              ^ 2 Heading into the final few weeks of the first half, the high scoring A’s are still right with the Rangers – just a half game out of first in the A.L. West.
7. Baltimore Orioles (47-36) 9              ^ 2 If he keeps it up, Chris Davis may wind up challenging Miguel Cabrera for the American League MVP Award.  Davis, 27, is hitting .332 with 31 home runs and 80 RBI’s.
8. Detroit Tigers (43-37)



4              – 4 Their 1-5 week was overshadowed by the shouting match between Miguel Cabrera and Fernando Rodney.  Lost in the commotion, was the fact that the Tigers have fallen into a first place tie with the Indians in the A.L. Central.
9. Cincinnati Reds (46-36)
3              – 6 The Reds, who were recently bunched tightly with Pittsburgh and St. Louis in the N.L. Central, have struggled recently while falling 5.5 games out of first place.
10. Tampa Bay Rays (43-39) 14           ^ 4 The Rays, currently in third place in the A.L. East, have an insanely easy schedule leading up to the All-Star break.  7 of their last 14 games are against Houston, and the other 7 are against the Twins and White Sox.

11. Cleveland Indians (44-38) 13           ^ 2 Cleveland rode a 6-2 week and Detroit’s struggles to a first place tie in the A.L. Central.
12. Arizona Diamondbacks (42-39)
10            – 2 The Diamondbacks, who had a 1-4 week, are just 2 games up on the Rockies for first in the N.L. West.
13. Washington Nationals (41-40) 18           ^ 5 The Nationals made a 5 spot leap this week because of the awful play of those around them in the rankings.  To close the first half, Washington plays 14 games against teams who are under .500.  Now would seem like the time for them to break out.
14. New York Yankees (42-39)
11            – 3 The magic may finally be running out for the Yankees.  During the week, they dealt with the ongoing A-Rod fiasco and received the news that Mark Teixeira (wrist) would be having season ending surgery.  After losing 5 games in a row, the Yankees have fallen into fourth place in the A.L. East, 6.5 games behind Boston.
15. San Francisco Giants (39-42) 15             – San Francisco continues to struggle.  They had a 1-5 week and have gone 2-8 over their last 10 games.  As is noted elsewhere in the rankings, the N.L. West is putrid.  So, despite playing terribly, the Giants find themselves just 3 games out of first place.
16. Toronto Blue Jays (40-41)
12            – 4 After reeling off 11 straight wins and welcoming Jose Reyes back, Toronto had a 2-5 week to dip back under .500 and fall 8.5 behind first place Boston in the A.L. East.
17. Colorado Rockies (41-42)
16            – 1 Colorado, 2 games out of first in the N.L. West, might have already overtaken Arizona if Troy Tulowitzki didn’t get hurt.  They open a 3 game set with surging Los Angeles tonight, and close the first half with 13 games against division opponents.
18. San Diego Padres (40-42)
17            – 1 The Padres are less than mediocre offensively, less than mediocre pitching wise, 2 games under .500, but just 2.5 games out in the N.L. West.
19. Los Angeles Angels (39-43)
23            ^ 4 The Angels have won 6 in a row to get their season headed in the right direction.  Still, they remain 9 games behind Texas in the A.L. West and 7.5 out of the second Wild Card spot.
20. Los Angeles Dodgers (38-43)
22            ^ 2 The bad news? After going 8-2 over their last 10 games, the Dodgers are still in last place.  The good news? The N.L. West is so putrid that they’re only 4 games out of first.
21. Kansas City Royals (38-41)
19            – 2 After going through an incredibly tough stretch, the Royals are somehow only 4.5 games out of first in the A.L. Central.  They have Detroit’s inconsistency to thank for that.
22. Philadelphia Phillies (39-44)
21            – 1 The Phillies, 9.5 games out in the N.L. East haven’t yet committed to selling at the trade deadline.  They really should.
23. Minnesota Twins (36-42) 20            – 3 Even with one of the worst pitching staffs in baseball, the Twins have been able to hover around the .500 mark.  They welcome the struggling Yankees to Target Field tonight.
24. Chicago Cubs (35-45)
27           ^ 3 The Cubs benefited from an easy schedule (Houston, Milwaukee, and Seattle) to go 6-3 over their last 9 games.  Starting this week, their schedule gets tough.  12 of their next 13 games are against Oakland, Pittsburgh, the rejuvenated Angels, and the Cardinals.
25. New York Mets (33-45)
25            – The Mets had a 3-3 week, with a series win in Philadelphia and a makeup win in Colorado.  They wrapped up the week by losing 2 of 3 to the Nats at home.  Top pitching prospect Zack Wheeler had a rough outing yesterday, leading the local media and some fans to needlessly panic.
26. Seattle Mariners (35-47) 24           – 2 Lefty reliever Oliver Perez has been a bright spot in another tough season for Seattle.  He has a 1.52 ERA, and has struck out 43 in 29.2 innings.
27. Chicago White Sox (32-47)
26           – 1 The Sox, losers of 5 straight, made it known a few days ago that every player except Chris Sale and Paul Konerko is available via trade.
28. Milwaukee Brewers (32-48) 28            – After winning their first game of the week, the Brewers lost 5 in a row.  Things aren’t likely to improve soon, either.  11 of their next 14 games are against Washington, Cincinnati, and Arizona.
29. Miami Marlins (29-51)
30          ^ 1
The Marlins had a 4-1 week to rise from the dregs of the rankings.  Their mini streak has been due to solid pitching.  Their offense (bottom 2 in the game in all major categories) remains a mess.
30. Houston Astros (30-52)

29           – 1 Houston has lost 3 in a row, 7 of their last 10, have the worst run differential in baseball (-112), and find themselves back at the bottom of the rankings.
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