MLB Power Rankings: Have the Phillies' Injuries Shaken Up the Top 5?

Josh ToyofukuContributor IIIMarch 19, 2012

MLB Power Rankings: Have the Phillies' Injuries Shaken Up the Top 5?

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    Spring Training is just about halfway over and that means that the 2012 MLB Season is closer than ever!

    Rosters are being finalized and new acquisitions are getting used to their surroundings so we have a clearer picture of what the landscape in Major League Baseball looks like.

    That being said, it's still just spring training, and many teams are playing split squad games so any results are to be taken with a grain of salt. 

    Opening Day is just around the corner—especially since the Oakland Athletics and Seattle Mariners open in Japan on March 28, more than a week before the rest of the league opens—so let's take a look at some spring training power rankings.

30. Houston Astros

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    Last season: 30th, 56-106, .346 winning percentage  

    Pitching: 796 runs allowed (28th in the league), 4.51 ERA (28), 560 walks (29), two complete games (T-25), six shutouts (T-25)

    Offense: 615 runs (26), .258 (10), 95 HR (29), 1,164 strikeouts (17), 401 walks (30), 118 stolen bases (T-12)

    Game-changers: Added INF Jed Lowrie (from Boston), .252 BA; lost RHP Mark Melancon (to Boston), 8-4 with a 2.78 ERA in 2011

    The Astros lost most of their best pieces at the 2011 trade deadline in order to get younger and start the rebuilding process. Unfortunately, that youth won't be 100 percent ready in 2012, making their lineup very thin. But if it's any consolation, they're currently 8-7 in the Grapefruit League.

29. Seattle Mariners

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    Last season: 28th, 67-95, .414 

    Pitching: 675 runs allowed (12), 3.90 ERA (15), 436 walks (2), 12 complete games (T-3), 10 shutouts (T-16)

    Offense: 556 runs (30), .233 BA (30), 109 HR (25), 1,280 strikeouts (27), 435 walks (28), 125 stolen bases (11)

    Game-changers: Added C Jesus Montero (from NY Yankees), .328 BA, 12 RBI and four HR in 18 games; traded RHP Michael Pineda, 9-10, 3.74 ERA and 173 K as a rookie

    The Mariners are yet again in a state of rebuilding and need a serious boost in the offense. Jesus Montero will help, but one man can't solve all their problems. Ichiro Suzuki will be batting third this season, rather than in his usual leadoff spot, to try and spark the Seattle offense.

28. Baltimore Orioles

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    Last season: 27th, 69-93, .426

    Pitching: 860 runs allowed (30), 4.89 ERA (30), 535 walks (T-22), three complete games (T-21), seven shutouts (T-24) 

    Offense: 708 runs (14), .257 (T-11), 191 HR (4), 1,120 strikeouts (13), 452 walks (32), 81 stolen bases (T-25)

    Game-changers: Added CF Endy Chavez (free agency), .301 BA, 37 runs and 27 RBI

    Endy Chavez should give the O's some flexibility, but at the end of the day, they have terrible pitching and are stuck in the toughest division in baseball, the AL East. Things don't look too good for the 20th Anniversary of Camden Yards.

27. New York Mets

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    Last season: 19th, 77-85  .475 

    Pitching: 742 runs allowed (22), 4.19 ERA (21), 514 walks (17), six complete games (T-11), nine shutouts (T-20)

    Offense: 721 runs (12), .264 (6), 108 HR (26), 1,085 strikeouts (8), 571 walks (T-3), 130 stolen bases (9)

    Game-changers: Lost SS Jose Reyes (free agency), .337 BA, 44 RBI and 101 runs

    The Mets don't have good pitching and lost their best player on offense, Jose Reyes, to the Miami Marlins. They are also in a terrible financial situation; it's a safe bet that 2012 won't be a fun year for the Mets.

    One bit of good news—Johan Santana could be back in the rotation as early as Opening Day after missing all of 2011.

26. San Diego Padres

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    Last season: 26th, 71-91, .438 

    Pitching: 611 runs allowed (4), 3.42 ERA (3), 521 walks (T-19), zero complete games (30), 10 shutouts (T-16)

    Offense: 593 runs (28), .237 BA (29), 91 HR (30), 1,320 strikeouts (29), 501 walks (15), 170 stolen bases (1), 1,320 K (29)  

    Game-changers: Added 1B Yonder Alonso (from Cincinnati), .330 BA, 15 RBI and 5 HR; added LF Carlos Quentin (from Chicago White Sox), .254 BA, 77 RBI and 24 HR; traded RHP Mat Latos (to San Diego), 9-14, 3.47 ERA and 185 strikeouts; lost RHP Heath Bell (free agency), 2.44 ERA and 43 saves

    The Padres are entering a rebuilding mode as they traded their ace, Mat Latos, to the Reds in return for Cincinnati's top prospect, Yonder Alonso. Plus, their new power threat, Carlos Quentin (pictured) is out for 4-6 weeks because of knee surgery. They will need their young pitching to really step up in order to make some noise in the NL West. 

25. Oakland Athletics

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    Last season: 20th, 74-88, .457 

    Pitching: 679 runs allowed (14), 3.71 ERA (10), 519 walks (18), six complete games (T-11), 12 shutouts (T-10)

    Offense: 645 runs (20), .244 (T-24), 114 HR (24), 1,094 strikeouts (11), 509 walks (13), 117 stolen bases (14)

    Game-changers: Traded LHP Gio Gonzalez (to Washington), 16-12, 3.12 ERA and 2011 All-Star; traded RHP Trevor Cahill (to Arizona), 4.16 ERA, promising young pitcher, an All-Star in 2010; traded RHP Andrew Bailey (to Boston), 24 saves last year and two-time All-Star; lost LF Josh Willingham (free agency), .246 BA, 98 RBI and 29 HR; added RF Josh Reddick (from Boston), .280 BA; added LF Seth Smith (from Colorado), .284 BA; added CF Yoenis Cespedes (free agency)

    The A's struggled in 2011 because of injuries and a lack of offense. They've traded their three best pitchers for a load of prospects, but they won't have a big enough impact in 2012 to help the team.

    Signing potential Cuban superstar, Yoenis Cespedes, should help the offense that was one of the worst in the league last year. Something is already clicking as the A's lead the Cactus League in runs scored.

24. Chicago Cubs

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    Last season: 25th, 71-91, .438 

    Pitching: 756 runs allowed (23), 4.33 ERA (25), 580 walks (30), four complete games (T-18), five shutouts (28T)

    Offense: 654 (T-18), .256 (T-13), 148 HR (20), 1,202 strikeouts (21), 425 walks (29), 69 stolen bases (28)

    Game-changers: Lost 1B Carlos Pena (free agency), 28 HR and 80 RBI; lost 3B Aramis Ramirez (free agency), .306 BA, 26 HR and 93 RBI 

    Losing their two best hitters and starting corner infielders will be a big blow for the Cubs offense in 2012. Theo Epstein's impact will take a couple seasons to be felt in the Windy City.

23. Chicago White Sox

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    Last season: T-17th, 79-83, .488 

    Pitching: 706 runs allowed (17), 4.10 ERA (19), 439 walks (3), six complete games (T-11), 14 shutouts (T-5)

    Offense: 654 (T-18), .252 BA (17), 154 HR (T-15), 989 strikeouts (3), 475 walks (T-20), 81 stolen bases (T-25)

    Game-changers: Traded LF Carlos Quentin (to San Diego), .254 BA, 77 RBI and 24 HR; lost LHP Mark Buehrle (free agency), 13-9 and 3.59 ERA 

    The White Sox took a big step towards rebuilding mode by letting Mark Buehrle walk and trading Carlos Quentin. Jake Peavy could possibly be back this season, but he hasn't fared well in spring training thus far.

22. Pittsburgh Pirates

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    Last season: T-22nd, 72-90, .444 

    Pitching: 712 runs allowed (19), 4.04 ERA (T-17), 535 walks (T-22), five complete games (T-14), 11 shutouts (T-13)

    Offense: 610 runs (27), .244 batting average (23), 107 HR (27), 1,308 strikeouts (28), 489 walks (18), 108 stolen bases (15)

    Game-changers: Added 3B/1B Casey McGehee (from Milwaukee), .223 BA, 67 RBI and 13 HR

    The Pirates made a surprise run into first place at midseason in 2011, but without adding any significant pieces, it will be tough for them to improve much in 2012.

21. Colorado Rockies

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    Last season: T-21st, 73-89, .451 

    Pitching: 774 runs allowed (27), 4.43 ERA (26), 522 walks (21), five complete games (T-14), seven shutouts (T-24) 

    Offense: 735 runs (T-7), .258 batting average (9), 163 HR (12), 1,201 strikeouts (20), 555 walks (5), 118 stolen bases (T-12)

    Game-changers: Traded RHP Huston Street (to San Diego), 3.86 ERA and 29 saves; added OF Michael Cuddyer (free agency), .284 BA, 70 RBI and 20 HR; added 2B Marco Scutaro (from Boston), .299 BA and 59 runs

    The Rockies added some nice offense with Cuddyer and a good double-play partner for Troy Tulowitzki with Scutaro, but their lack of pitching will hold them back next season.

    Center fielder Dexter Folwer has added more muscle to his frame and could be a breakout star in 2012.

20. Kansas City Royals

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    Last season: 24th, 71-91, .438 

    Pitching: 762 runs allowed (26), 4.44 ERA (27), 557 walks (27), two complete games (T-25), six shutouts (T-25)

    Offense: 730 runs (10), .275 (4), 129 HR (21), 1,006 strikeouts (4), 442 walks (T-25), 153 stolen bases (3)

    Game-changers: Traded CF Melky Cabrera (to San Francisco), .305 BA, 87 RBI and 18 HR; added LHP Jonathan Sanchez (from San Francisco), 4.26 ERA and 4-7 

    The Kansas City Royals have a great young core, especially on the offensive end.

    But will their young pitching, with the addition of Jonathan Sanchez, step up?

    If it can, they can be even better in 2012. One snag to their plan is the fact that closer Joakim Soria has been pitching terribly in the spring and recently had to leave a game with an elbow injury.

19. Cleveland Indians

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    Last season: T-15th, 80-82, .494 

    Pitching: 760 runs allowed (24), 4.23 ERA (23), 463 walks (8), two complete games (T-25), four shutouts (30)

    Offense: 704 runs (16), .250 (T-18), 154 HR (T-15), 1,269 strikeouts (26), 494 walks (17), 89 stolen bases (23)

    Game-changers: Added 1B Casey Kotchman (free agency), .306 BA, 48 RBI and 10 HR

    The Cleveland Indians didn't do much to improve their roster for next season, and that will hold them back in 2012—especially with the Tigers improving a lot.

18. Cincinnati Reds

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    Last season: T-17th, 79-83, .488 

    Pitching: 720 runs allowed (20), 4.16 ERA (20), 539 walks (24), four complete games (T-18), five shutouts (T-28)

    Offense: 735 runs (T-7), .256 (T-13), 183 HR (7), 1,250 strikeouts (24), 535 walks (9), 97 stolen bases (18)

    Game-changers: Added RHP Ryan Madson (free agency), 2.37 ERA and 32 saves; added RHP Mat Latos (from San Diego), 9-14, 3.47 ERA and 185 strikeouts; traded 1B/LF Yonder Alonso (to San Diego), .330 BA, 15 RBI and five HR

    The Reds suffered from bad pitching but adding Mat Latos should help. He only won nine games last year, but that was on a bad Padres team when he was injured. Yet, the fact that he's moving from a pitcher's ballpark to a hitter's ballpark could hurt him.

    If ace Johnny Cueto can return to form, that will be a huge step in the right direction.

17. Minnesota Twins

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    Last season: 29th, 63-99, .389

    Pitching: 804 runs allowed (29), 4.58 ERA (29), 480 walks (11), seven complete games (T-6), eight shutouts (T-22)

    Offense: 619 runs (25), .247 (T-21), 103 HR (28), 1,048 strikeouts (6), 440 walks (27), 92 stolen bases (22)

    Game-changers: Added LF Josh Willingham (free agency), .246 BA, 98 RBI and 29 HR; added SS Jamey Carroll (free agency), .290 BA, 52 runs and 17 RBI; lost OF Michael Cuddyer (free agency), .284 BA, 70 RBI and 20 HR; lost OF Jason Kubel (free agency), .273 BA and 58 RBI in 99 games 

    Their health was a big part of their horrible record last year; if Justin Morneau, Joe Mauer and company can stay healthy, they can be competing for the AL Central title.

    That's a big if, though.

16. Toronto Blue Jays

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    Last season: 14th, 81-81, .500 

    Pitching: 761 runs allowed (25), 4.32 ERA (24), 540 walks (T-25), seven complete games (T-6), 10 shutouts (T-16)

    Offense: 743 runs (6), .249 (20), 186 HR (5), 1,184 strikeouts (18), 525 walks (11), 131 stolen bases (8)

    Game-changers: None of note

    The Blue Jays have put together a solid team that is one piece away from contending for an AL East title. But they still don't have that piece, and because of that, they're the fourth-best team in the East. They sure do have some nice new uniforms though.

15. Miami Marlins

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    Last season: T-22nd, 72-90, .444 

    Pitching: 702 runs allowed (15), 3.95 ERA (16), 500 walks (13), seven complete games (T-6), 11 shutouts (T-13)

    Offense: 625 runs (23), .247 (T-21), 149 HR (19), 1,244 strikeouts (22), 542 walks (T-6), 95 stolen bases (20)

    Game-changers: Added SS Jose Reyes (free agency), .337 BA, 44 RBI and 101 runs; added RHP Heath Bell (free agency), 2.44 ERA and 43 saves; added LHP Mark Buehrle (free agency), 13-9 and 3.59 ERA 

    With a new ballpark and a new shortstop, Miami should be much-improved in the coming year. The even better news is that Hanley Ramirez looks very comfortable over at third base after many people spent the offseason wondering how his transition there would work out.

14. Los Angeles Dodgers

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    Last season: 13th, 82-79, .509 

    Pitching: 612 runs allowed (5), 3.54 ERA (5), 507 walks (T-15), seven complete games (T-6), 17 shutouts (3)

    Offense: 644 runs (21), .257 (T-11), 117 HR (23), 1,087 strikeouts (10), 498 walks (16), 126 stolen bases (10)

    Game-changers: Added RHP Aaron Harang (free agency), 14-7 and 3.64 ERA; added LHP Chris Caupano (free agency), 11-12 and 4.55 ERA

    Even if Matt Kemp and Clayton Kershaw drop off a little bit in 2012, they will still be elite players and two of the best in all of MLB. Plus, with more experience, Dee Gordon could blossom into a star.

13. Washington Nationals

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    Last season: T-15th, 80-81, .497

    Pitching: 643 runs allowed (9), 3.58 ERA (T-7), 477 walks (10), three complete games (T-21), 10 shutouts (T-16)

    Offense: 624 runs (24), .242 BA (T-27), 154 HR (T-15), 1,323 strikeouts (30), 470 walks (22), 106 stolen bases (16)

    Game-changers: Added LHP Gio Gonzalez (from Oakland), 16-12, 3.12 ERA; added RHP Edwin Jackson (free agency), 12-9, 3.79 ERA

    The addition of Gio Gonzalez should make a difference and help the club, but their biggest issues remain on offense. Luckily, budding superstar Bryce Harper is expected to make his debut in 2012, sometime after Opening Day.  

12. Milwaukee Brewers

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    Last season: T-3rd, 96-66, .593 

    Pitching: 638 runs allowed (8), 3.63 ERA (9), 440 walks (4), one complete games (29), 13 shutouts (T-7)

    Offense: 721 runs (11), .261 (8), 185 HR (6), 1,083 strikeouts (7), 481 walks (19), 94 stolen bases (21)

    Game-changers: Lost 1B Prince Fielder (free agency), .299 BA, 38 HR and 120 RBI; traded 3B Casey McGehee (to Pittsburgh), .223 BA, 13 HR and 67 RBI; added 3B Aramis Ramirez (free agency), .306 BA, 26 HR and 93 RBI; added SS Alex Gonzalez (free agency), .241 BA, 15 HR, 56 RBI last year for the Braves

    How do you replace Prince Fielder’s production? I don’t think you do. Luckily for the Brewers, Ryan Braun won't have to serve a 50 game suspension and will be in uniform to help out. Regardless, look for them to score a lot less in 2012.

11. St. Louis Cardinals

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    Last season: T-8th, 90-72, .556 

    Pitching: 692 runs allowed (15), 3.74 ERA (12), 448 walks (6), seven complete games (T-6), nine shutouts (T-20)

    Offense: 762 runs (5), .273 BA (5), 162 HR (13), 978 strikeouts (2), 542 walks (T-6), 57 stolen bases (29)

    Game-changers: Added RF Carlos Beltran (free agency), .300 BA, 84 RBI and 22 HR; lost 1B Albert Pujols (free agency), .299 BA, 99 RBI and 37 HR

    The loss of Pujols is going to sting—not just in lost production, but in lack of morale. Their ace, Chris Carpenter is suffering from a neck injury but is still slated to start on Opening Day, April 4.

10. Arizona Diamondbacks

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    Last season: 6th, 94-68, .580 

    Pitching: 662 runs allowed (11), 3.80 ERA (14), 442 walks (5), five complete games (T-14), 12 shutouts (T-10)

    Offense: 731 runs (9), .250 (T-18), 172 HR (T-9), 1,249 strikeouts (23), 531 walks (10), 133 stolen bases (7)

    Game-changers: Added RHP Trevor Cahill (from Oakland), 4.16 ERA and 2010 All-Star; added OF Jason Kubel (free agency), .273 BA and 58 RBI in 99 games  

    The Diamondbacks put together a great 2011 thanks to the emergence of Ian Kennedy and Justin Upton. Both are young and hitting their primes, which will put them in a great position to contend for an NL West title again.

    In addition, the Diamondbacks added Trevor Cahill, and Trevor Bauer could start the year in the rotation as well, making it very formidable. 

9. Atlanta Braves

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    Last season: 10th, 89-73, .549 

    Pitching: 605 runs allowed (3), 3.48 ERA (4), 521 walks (T-19), three complete games (T-21), 16 shutouts (4)

    Offense: 641 runs (22), .243 BA (26), 173 HR (8), 1,260 strikeouts (25), 504 walks (14), 77 stolen bases (27)

    Game-changers: None of note

    The Braves were just a win away from making the postseason in 2011, and undoubtedly want to prove everyone that they can make it to the playoffs. They can be even better in 2012, with the likely emergence of Julio Teheran and the return of Dan Uggla.

8. Boston Red Sox

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    Last season: T-8th, 90-72, .556 

    Pitching: 737 runs allowed (21), 4.20 ERA (22), 540 walks (T-25), two complete games (T-25), 13 shutouts (T-7) 

    Offense: 875 runs (1), .280 BA (2), 203 HR (3), 1,108 strikeouts (12), 578 walks (2), 102 stolen bases (17), 1,108 K (12)  

     Game-changers: Added RHP Mark Melancon (from Houston), 8-4 last year, 2.78 ERA; added RHP Andrew Bailey (from Oakland), 24 saves last year; traded RF Josh Reddick (to Oakland), .280 BA; traded 2B Marco Scutaro (to Colorado), .299 BA, 59 runs

    Boston has made a lot of changes in the offseason. Will it result in a better record? They still haven’t addressed the problems with the pitching staff, so probably not. Plus, they have to deal with the retirement of two clubhouse leaders, Jason Varitek and Tim Wakefield. Boston has the talent, they just have to put it all together.

7. San Francisco Giants

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    Last season: T-11th, 86-76, .531 

    Pitching: 578 runs allowed (2), 3.20 ERA (2), 559 walks (28), three complete games (T-21), 12 shutouts (T-10)

    Offense: 570 runs (29), .242 (27T), 121 HR (22), 1,122 strikeouts (14), 448 walks (24), 85 stolen bases (24)

    Game-changers: Added CF Melky Cabrera (from Kansas City), .305 BA, 87 RBI and 18 HR; traded LHP Jonathan Sanchez (to Kansas City), 4.26 ERA, 4-7

    Losing Buster Posey early in the season cost the Giants tremendously in leadership and runs scored. With their great pitching staff and a healthy Posey, they will contend for the National League West title.

6. New York Yankees

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    Last season: 2nd, 97-65, .599 

    Pitching: 657 runs allowed (10), 3.73 ERA (11), 507 walks (T-15), five complete games (T-14), eight shutouts (T-22)

    Offense: 867 runs (2), .263 BA (7), 627 walks (1), 1,138 strikeouts (15), 222 HR (1), 147 stolen bases (4), 1,138 K (15)

    Game-changers: Added RHP Michael Pineda (from Seattle), 9-10, 3.74 ERA and 173 K as a rookie, added RHP Hiroki Kuroda (free agency), 13-16 and 3.07 ERA; added LHP Andy Pettitte (out of retirement)

    The addition of Michael Pineda will do wonders for a Yankees pitching staff that was in dire need of another top-of-the-line starter. Unfortunately, Pineda's velocity has been nowhere to be seen during his outings this spring, and he is only 23 years old.

    Andy Pettitte has just been signed as insurance but he's 39 and hasn't played in over a year.

5. Tampa Bay Rays

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    Last season: 7th, 91-71, .562 

    Pitching: 614 runs allowed (6), 3.58 ERA (T-7), 504 walks (14), 15 complete games (2), 13 shutouts (T-7)

    Offense: 707 runs (15), .244 (T-24), 172 HR (T-9), 1,193 strikeouts (19), 571 walks (T-3), 155 stolen bases (2)

    Game-changers: Added 1B Carlos Pena (free agency), .225 BA, 80 RBI

    The Rays put together a good 2011 season and can do the same in 2012, thanks to what should be an improved pitching staff. Matt Moore has shown amazing potential and could be the Rays' ace by the end of the season, yes, over David Price.

4. Philadelphia Phillies

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    Last year: 1st, 102-60, .630

    Pitching: 529 runs allowed (1), 3.02 ERA (1), 404 walks (1), 18 complete games (1), 21 shutouts (1) 

    Offense: 713 runs (13), .253 BA (15T), 153 HR (18), 1,006 strikeouts (5), 539 walks (8), 96 stolen bases (19), 1,024 K (5)

    Game-changers: Added RHP Jonathan Papelbon (free agency), 2.94 ERA and 31 saves; lost RHP Ryan Madson (free agency), 2.37 ERA, 32 saves

    Last year, the Phillies had the best pitching and defense in the league. They only gave up 529 runs, which topped the second-best team, the San Francisco Giants, by 49 runs. Look for them to continue their winning ways on the backs of their great pitching staff. They will have to play without Ryan Howard for a couple months though, and that will be a significant blow.

3. Detroit Tigers

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    Last season: 5th, 95-67, .586 

    Pitching: 711 runs allowed (18), 4.04 ERA (T-17), 492 walks (12), four complete games (T-18), 14 shutouts (T-5) 

    Offense: 783 runs (4), .277 BA (3), 169 HR (11), 1,143 strikeouts (16), 521 walks (12), 49 stolen bases (30)

    Game-changers: Added 1B Prince Fielder (free agency), .299 BA, 120 RBI, 38 HR; lost DH Victor Martinez (torn ACL), .330 BA and 103 RBI

    While losing Victor Martinez to an ACL injury for the entire season is a huge blow to the Tigers' championship hopes, they added one of the league's best sluggers in Prince Fielder. Plus, Detroit still has the best pitcher in the game, Justin Verlander, and an MVP candidate in third baseman, Miguel Cabrera. 

2. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

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    Last season: 11th, 86-76, .531

    Pitching: 633 runs allowed (7), 3.57 ERA (6), 476 walks (9), 12 complete games (T-3), 11 shutouts (T-13)

    Offense: 667 runs (17), .253 (15T), 155 HR (14), 1,086 strikeouts (9), 442 walks (T-25), 135 stolen bases (6)

    Game-changers: Added 1B Albert Pujols (free agency), .299 BA, 99 RBI and 37 HR; added LHP C.J. Wilson (free agency), 16-7, 2.94 ERA and 206 K; re-signed 1B Kendry Morales (back from injury), .306 BA, 34 HR and 108 RBI in 2009

    The addition of C.J. Wilson to the already deep staff and both Albert Pujols and a healthy Kendry Morales to the batting order means that the Angels will be competing for the best record in baseball.

    Oh yeah, and remember Jered Weaver? He's arguably the second-best pitcher in the American League, so don't sleep on the Angels pitching either.


1. Texas Rangers

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    Last season: T-3rd, 96-66, .593 

    Pitching: 677 runs allowed (13), 3.79 ERA (13), 461 walks (7), 10 complete games (5), 19 shutouts (2)

    Offense: 855 runs (3), .283 BA (1), 210 HR (2), 930 strikeouts (1), 475 (T-20), 143 stolen bases (5) 

    Game-changers: Added RHP Yu Darvish (free agency); added RHP Joe Nathan (free agency),
    .484 ERA and 14 saves; lost LHP C.J. Wilson (free agency), 16-7, 2.94 ERA and 206 K; lost CF Endy Chavez (free agency), .301 BA, 37 runs and 27 RBI

    The Rangers already have one of the best offenses in baseball, so for 2012, the focus is on pitching. Essentially Yu Darvish comes in as a better C.J. Wilson. Although, highly-touted Japanese pitchers have frequently failed to live up to the hype (see Hideki Irabu and Daisuke Matzusaka), if Darvish can live up to at least some of  his billing, he could best Wilson’s record and add several wins.

    Plus, with the signing of Joe Nathan, Neftali Feliz will bolster the Rangers rotation. The Rangers will be looking to finally win the championship that has eluded them in the World Series the past two seasons.