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After a week absence the MLB Power Rankings are back (apologies for last week). It’s still early in the season and there is still a lot of fluctuation in the rankings. Because there were no rankings last week there is even more movement. Seven teams moved double digits since the Week 2 rankings. A team that didn’t move that much is the Texas Rangers, moving up only two spots but overtaking the top spot in the rankings. Texas is playing great and has clearly been MLB’s top team thus far. They took three of four on the road against an impressive Detroit team this weekend. Record means a lot more in this week’s rankings than previous ones. Look for that trend to continue as we get deeper in the season. Now, for the rankings…

The Texas Rangers have been doing a lot of celebrating so far this season. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
  1. Texas Rangers 
  2. St. Louis Cardinals 4
  3. New York Yankees 1
  4. Washington Nationals 10
  5. Atlanta Braves 8
  6. Detroit Tigers 4
  7. Los Angeles Dodgers 9
  8. Toronto Blue Jays 2
  9. Tampa Bay Rays 8
  10. Chicago White Sox 14
  11. Cleveland Indians 10
  12. Miami Marlins 1
  13. Arizona Diamondbacks 6
  14. San Francisco Giants 5
  15. Philadelphia Phillies 
  16. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 11
  17. New York Mets →
  18. Baltimore Orioles 4
  19. Colorado Rockies 7
  20. Milwaukee Brewers 2
  21. Cincinnati Reds 13
  22. Oakland Athletics 6
  23. Pittsburgh Pirates 3
  24. Seattle Mariners 1
  25. Boston Red Sox 13
  26. Houston Astros 3
  27. San Diego Padres 2
  28. Kansas City Royals 13
  29. Chicago Cubs 2
  30. Minnesota Twins →

Three Up

1. Chicago White Sox – Strong pitching, including a perfect game from Philip Humber, has led the White Sox so far. Interestingly, the bottom three in the rotation, Jake Peavy, Humber, and Chris Sale, have been the strongest; John Danks and Gavin Floyd have struggled. The offense has gotten solid production out of Alex Rios and Adam Dunn, two major disappointments last year. Sandwiched between losing three of four to Baltimore, Chicago took two of three from Detroit and swept Seattle. They are the biggest movers in the rankings jumping 14 spots and into the top 10.

2. Washington Nationals – Starting Pitching. Starting Pitching. Starting Pitching. Washington is off to a hot start (12-4) behind their five starting pitchers. Four starters, Stephen Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez, Jordan Zimmerman, and Ross Detwiler, have ERAs below 2.04. Edwin Jackson’s ERA is 4.26 behind one really bad outing. The Nats have given up the third fewest runs in baseball and the bullpen hasn’t performed very well. On offense, Jayson Werth and Adam LaRoche have started off nicely.

3. Los Angeles Dodgers – The Dodgers have played well amassing a 12-4 record, tied for second best in MLB. Record wise they should be a little higher in the rankings, but their schedule has been weak. They’ve played two series against San Diego along with Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, and Houston. Other than Milwaukee, who could be decent though not as good as last year, the Dodgers have perhaps played the three weakest teams in the National League. Still, the Dodgers are beating teams they should be beating. Matt Kemp has been the best player in the game this season and his teammate Andre Ethier hasn’t been far behind; the duo are 1 and 2 in MLB in RBIs. The rest of the lineup hasn’t delivered much.

Three Down

1. Kansas City Royals – Kansas City has the worst record in baseball (3-12) and dropped 13 spots in the rankings, tied for the biggest drop. After taking two out of three against the Angels on the road, the Royals have lost 11 of 12 including 10 straight. Southpaws Bruce Chen and Danny Duffy have pitched adequately thus far, but the rotation is only averaging just over five innings per start. The Royals rank 25th in runs scored and runs allowed, a perfect recipe for disaster.

2. Cincinnati Reds – This team has played a relatively tough schedule, but hasn’t played all that well. Four of their five series have come against teams that should be contenders (Miami, St. Louis, Washington, St. Louis). They lost both series to the Cardinals 1-2. Cincy could easily have a better record but has dropped three of four games that went to extra innings. Yesterday was the last game of a 10-game road trip. They’re low in the rankings this week, their -16 run differential a big reason why, but should be on the rise in the near future.

3. Boston Red Sox – The struggles continue. Boston is lucky to be ranked 25th. The ranking is more of a testament of the talent on the roster than what they’ve shown on the field. The Red Sox have dropped five consecutive games including a brutal one to the New York Yankees in which they led 9-0 after the fifth inning only to give up 15 unanswered runs. Their pitching, the bullpen in particular, has been atrocious. The Sox have the fourth worst record in baseball (4-10) and the second worst run differential (-25).

Until next week. Any thoughts on the rankings?