Friday, July 6, 2012

American League Power Rankings: Week 13

If you didn't think the White Sox had any power over the American League, consider this: the Texas Rangers had been ranked in first place in these rankings all season long. Then the Rangers went to Chicago and were swept in a three-game series by the White Sox.

The Rangers are no longer the top-ranked team.

Nope, that position now belongs to the Yankees, who also own the best record in the American League.

1. New York Yankees (49-32): The Yankees only went 3-3 during the week but they took advantage of the Rangers struggling. They're also just pretty good, as they currently rank in the top three of just about every major statistical category. (2)

2. Texas Rangers (50-33): For the first time all season the Rangers are looking up at somebody. They were just swept for the first time all year by the White Sox, though I don't think one sweep is going to mean much to this team and they'll be just fine. Just a hunch. (1)

3. Los Angeles Angels (46-37): This would have been a great time for the Angels to gain some ground on the Rangers in the West, but while the Rangers were getting swept the Angels were losing two of three to the Indians and could only split a four-game set with the Blue Jays. (3)

4. Chicago White Sox (45-37): Not a bad week, huh? In their last 7 games the White Sox have played the Yankees and Rangers, who just happen to be the top two teams in these rankings. They've gone 5-2 in those games and outscored New York and Texas 46-25 in the process. That's not a bad week. (4)

5. Boston Red Sox (42-40): Not a great week for the Red Sox as they went 2-4 but they were able to hold on to their spot in the top five. Of course, if you keep going 2-5 against teams like the Mariners and Athletics, you won't be here long. (5)

6. Tampa Bay Rays (43-40): I'm not going to make a final decision on the Rays until Evan Longoria is back and playing regularly, but what I'm seeing from this team right now isn't all that impressive. It seems like a team that was playing over its head considering the talent on the roster to start the season, and is now just kind of settling into what it is. An average team. (6)

7. Oakland Athletics (41-42): The Athletics are a the biggest climber of the week thanks in large part to a sweep of the Red Sox. Of course the biggest reason this team is ranked as high as it is, above teams with better records, is the pitching staff. Oakland has the best ERA in the American League. (10)

8. Toronto Blue Jays (42-41): The best news I can give the Blue Jays right now is that I'm feeling incredibly optimistic about the White Sox at the moment, which means a letdown is coming. That's good news for the team that makes its way to The Cell tonight. (8)

9. Cleveland Indians (43-39): The Indians are starting to play well again, and this time it's not nearly as mysterious. The offense is finally scoring runs consistently and the pitching has been good enough. Not great, but good enough. If they keep this up they'll finally start climbing to a spot that matches their win-loss record. (11)

10. Baltimore Orioles (44-38): The Orioles are a strange team, much like the Indians have been. They've managed to hover around 4 to 6 games over .500 for the season, even though they're getting worse in just about every major statistical category. It's a formula that's keeping them in the hunt in the AL East but is killing them in these rankings. (7)

11. Detroit Tigers (41-42): These Tigers, man, I just don't know what to make of this team anymore. They go down to Tampa and take three of four but then come home to play a four-game set against the Twins and can barely manage a split against the worst team in the league. (9)

12. Kansas City Royals (37-44): Well, at least you'll be hosting the All-Star Game. (12)

13. Seattle Mariners (35-49): The Mariners are now the proud owner of the worst record in the American League, but they're going to have to try harder if they want the Twins to pass them here. (13)

14. Minnesota Twins (35-47): The Twins had a good week but not good enough to get out of the cellar. (14)

Last week's rankings can be found here.

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