Rangers, Cards stay on top of Power Rankings

Rangers, Cards stay on top of Power Rankings

Rangers, Cards stay on top of Power Rankings
Let the debate continue.

Is there a team more powerful than the Texas Rangers? Could it be the Cardinals, or perhaps the Yankees?

You can argue the Dodgers and Nationals are the top of the class in the National League, but can you dispute the power Los Angeles center fielder Matt Kemp has displayed already?

Raise your hand if you think Detroit and Washington, two of the hottest teams in baseball, will square off against each other in the World Series.

History shows that you can never count the Rays out. Ever.

For the third season, MLB.com has set up a panel of experts to vote on the top 15 teams each week. Three former Major League players -- Larry Dierker, Mitch Williams, and Frank Thomas -- are part of the process, as are columnist Peter Gammons and Carlton Thompson, vice president and executive editor of MLB.com. Former general manager and current MLB.com analyst Jim Duquette, along with MLB.com columnists Mike Bauman, Hal Bodley, Anthony Castrovince, Richard Justice, Matthew Leach and Jesse Sanchez are also part of the group.

Agree? Disagree? The power is yours.

This Week's Power Rankings
This WeekMovementPower PlayerLast Week
1Even with last week.Rangers

The two-time defending American League champs finished 8-1 on their recent road trip and head back to Arlington on a roll. Josh Hamilton is hitting .418 with seven home runs and 17 RBIs, while Mike Napoli, who is second on the team with six home runs, homered in five consecutive games last week.

2Even with last week.Cardinals

The defending World Series champions have won every series this year, and their best baseball could still be ahead of them. Jon Jay has been slowed with an ailing right shoulder and Matt Holliday is trying to work himself out of a slump at the plate.

3Moved up from last week.Dodgers

The 12-4 Dodgers are tied with the Nationals for the best record in the National League, and they can thank Kemp for the meteoric rise to the top of the standings. Kemp leads the Major Leagues in average, RBIs, home runs, slugging percentage and OPS.

4Moved up from last week.Yankees

The Bronx Bombers are living up to their nickname. The Yankees have hit 12 homers over their past three games (including five on Friday). The Yankees are averaging 8.2 runs per game in their past five games.

5Moved down from last week.Tigers

Staff ace Justin Verlander deservedly gets most of the attention, but the rest of the staff is pitching in. Detroit pitchers struck out eight Texas hitters on Sunday, and now have struck out 131 batters.

6Moved up from last week.Nationals

The Nationals are tied with the Dodgers for the best record in the NL at 12-4, but their overall mark only tells part of the story. The Nats are 4-2 on the road this season. They were 36-45 away from Nationals Park last season.

7Moved up from last week.Rays

The Rays have won two consecutive series and four of their past five games. Some of the credit should go to Matt Joyce. Joyce has hit three home runs, two doubles and has three RBIs, while also scoring eight runs in his last five games. He's hit safely in eight of his last nine games with an average of .375 during that span.

8Moved up from last week.Braves

The hot-hitting Braves have won 10 of 12 and Freddie Freeman is on fire at the plate. Jason Heyward is coming off a 10-game hitting streak, and Michael Bourn just might be the best thing to happen to the top of the lineup since a young Rafael Furcal.

9Moved up from last week.Blue Jays

The Blue Jays are tied with Yankees on top of the standings in the AL East in large part because of solid defense and strong pitching. Slugger Jose Bautista is off to a slow start, hitting .212 with two home runs and seven RBIs this season.

10Moved down from last week.Angels

The Angels will need more production from Albert Pujols if they expect to live up to the expectations placed upon them before the season. Pujols is hitting .246 with four RBIs. He has a 65-at-bat homerless streak, the longest of his career to start a season.

11Moved down from last week.Phillies

The Phillies are being tested early. The club is in last-place in the NL East and the offense is struggling. Philadelphia managed just eight runs in a four-game series against the Padres over the weekend and there could be more challenges ahead. The club placed Cliff Lee on the disabled list with a strained left oblique.

12Moved up from last week.Indians

The Indians are coming off a 7-2 road trip, which includes wins in four of the past six games without All-Star shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, who was on bereavement leave. Cabrera is hitting .282 with two homers and three RBIs in eight games this season.

Was unranked last week.
13Even with last week.Marlins

Jose Reyes is off to a slow start this season, batting .230 with a .294 on-base percentage, but Hanley Ramirez and his teammates are picking up the slack. Ramirez is batting .263 with four home runs, 10 runs scored and 12 RBIs. Logan Morrison and Omar Infante are each sporting .325 batting averages.

14Moved down from last week.Giants

As expected, Pablo Sandoval is off to a fine start this season. The third baseman has hit safely in all 14 games this season, batting .333 with two homers and 10 RBIs. Tim Lincecum's struggles have surprised everyone. The staff ace has allowed 16 runs in three starts this season, the most of any three-game stretch in his six-year career, and he is 0-2 with a 10.54 ERA for the season.

15Moved down from last week.D-backs

Chris Young (shoulder) is on the disabled list and Justin Upton (thumb) is playing hurt, and their injuries have had a dramatic impact on the Arizona offense. The club lost three of four to the Braves over the weekend and needed a grand slam by Gerardo Parra to win the series finale.