Updated MLB Power Rankings: Where Does Your Team Stand at the All-Star Break?

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistJuly 9, 2012

Updated MLB Power Rankings: Where Does Your Team Stand at the All-Star Break?

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    The All-Star break is here, and that means that a month of swirling trade rumors is upon us as we push ever closer to the July 31 trade deadline.

    However, before we look forward to the second half, let's take this chance to look back at the season thus far.

    I've named who I feel is the top hitter and pitcher for each team at the break, handing out my midseason awards much like I did at the season's quarter-pole mark.

    So here are this week's MLB power rankings. Be sure to check back here each Monday morning for an updated look at where your favorite team stands.

     

    *Note: Rosters taken from MLBDepthCharts.com

30. Houston Astros (33-53, Previous: 27)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Jordan Schafer
    2B Jose Altuve
    3B Scott Moore
    LF J.D. Martinez
    SS Jed Lowrie
    1B Chris Johnson
    RF Brian Bogusevic
    C Jason Castro
    Pitcher 

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Wandy Rodriguez
    SP Lucas Harrell
    SP J.A. Happ
    SP Jordan Lyles
    SP Bud Norris
    CL Brett Myers

     

    Last Week's Record: 1-6

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 2B Jose Altuve (.303/.344/.438, 5 HR, 27 RBI, 48 R)

    After hitting .389 in the minors prior to being called up last season, more than a few people pointed to Altuve as a potential sleeper for 2012. He has proven them right.

    He's been a terrific catalyst atop the Astros lineup and, at 22 years old, should be a building block moving forward. Jed Lowrie (14 HR, 36 RBI) deserves mention for his unexpected power surge.

    Top Pitcher: SP Wandy Rodriguez (18 GS, 7-6, 3.37 ERA, 75 Ks, 114.2 IP)

    Will this be the season that the Astros finally pull the trigger on dealing Rodriguez? He's certainly done nothing to hurt his trade value so far this season, as he is turning in another terrific season despite a less-than-stellar supporting cast.

29. Colorado Rockies (33-52, Previous: 30)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Dexter Fowler
    SS Marco Scutaro
    LF Carlos Gonzalez
    RF Michael Cuddyer
    1B Todd Helton
    3B Jordan Pacheco
    2B Chris Nelson
    C Wilin Rosario
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation 

    SP Christian Friedrich
    SP Jeff Francis
    SP Drew Pomeranz
    SP Jeremy Guthrie
    CL Rafael Betancourt

     

    Last Week's Record: 3-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: LF Carlos Gonzalez (.330/.389/.578, 17 HR, 58 RBI, 61 R)

    "CarGo" has removed any doubt that he is anything but an elite hitter, as he has bounced back from a down 2011 season with another fantastic stat line across the board.

    A nod to Tyler Colvin (.305 BA, 13 HR, 40 RBI) who has given the Rockies more than they could have ever hoped for when they dealt Ian Stewart to the Cubs for him in the offseason.

    Top Pitcher: RP Matt Belisle (43 G, 3-2, 1.93 ERA, 40 Ks, 46.2 IP)

    It's never a good sign when your setup man has been your best pitcher in the first half, but given the Rockies' 5.26 team ERA, it should come as no surprise.

    Belisle has been phenomenal dating back to the 2010 season and since the start of that year, he has a 2.79 ERA over 192 appearances. He leads the NL in appearances this season.

28. San Diego Padres (34-53, Previous: 29)

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    Current Lineup

    RF Will Venable
    2B Alexi Amarista
    3B Chase Headley
    LF Carlos Quentin
    C Yasmani Grandal
    1B Yonder Alonso
    CF Cameron Maybin
    SS Everth Cabrera
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Edinson Volquez
    SP Clayton Richard
    SP Jason Marquis
    SP Kip Wells
    SP Ross Ohlendorf
    CL Huston Street

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 3B Chase Headley (.267/.368/.413, 8 HR, 42 RBI, 39 R)

    Terrific plate discipline remains Headley's biggest offensive asset, and while he will never have prototypical power for a third baseman, he remains productive nonetheless.

    That production has left no less than seven teams reportedly interested in acquiring him, and the Padres will have a big decision to make between now and July 31.

    Top Pitcher: RP Huston Street (25 G, 13-of-13 Sv, 1.13 ERA, 32 Ks, 24 IP)

    The Padres' lone All-Star representative, Street missed a month early in the season with a lat injury, but he has been terrific since returning.

    He could be the top reliever on the market, and the Padres will likely fetch a solid return if they do decide to move him as expected.

27. Chicago Cubs (33-52, Previous: 28)

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    Current Lineup 

    CF David DeJesus
    SS Starlin Castro
    1B Anthony Rizzo
    LF Alfonso Soriano
    RF Bryan LaHair
    C Geovany Soto
    2B Darwin Barney
    3B Luis Valbuena
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Ryan Dempster
    SP Matt Garza
    SP Jeff Samardzija
    SP Paul Maholm
    SP Travis Wood
    CL Carlos Marmol

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 1B Bryan LaHair (.286/.364/.519, 14 HR, 30 RBI, 32 R)

    While he has cooled a bit after a ridiculously hot start to the season, LaHair has settled in with an average approaching .300, solid OBP and plus power. It has been nice to see the 29-year-old make the most of his first shot at regular playing time and be rewarded with an All-Star nod.

    Top Pitcher: SP Ryan Dempster (13 GS, 4-3, 1.99 ERA, 70 Ks, 86 IP)

    Only on the Cubs could the pitcher with the best ERA in the National League have a 4-3 record, but that is where Dempster finds himself. He pitched five scoreless innings on Sunday in his return from the DL, bumping his scoreless innings streak to 27.

    He'll be long gone by the time August rolls around, as he should be one of the most coveted players on the market.

26. Seattle Mariners (36-51, Previous: 25)

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    Current Lineup

    RF Ichiro Suzuki
    LF Casper Wells
    3B Kyle Seager
    DH Jesus Montero
    CF Michael Saunders
    1B Justin Smoak
    C Miguel Olivo
    2B Dustin Ackley
    SS Brendan Ryan

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Felix Hernandez
    SP Jason Vargas
    SP Kevin Millwood
    SP Hisashi Iwakuma
    SP TBD
    CL Tom Wilhelmsen

     

    Last Week's Record: 2-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 3B Kyle Seager (.243/.306/.420, 10 HR, 52 RBI, 34 R)

    Despite a poor lineup around him and a subpar batting average, Seager is No. 14 in the American League in RBI thanks to a .355 average with runners in scoring position. The 24-year-old looks like he has a solid future ahead of him and should be a major part of the Mariners' future plans.

    Top Pitcher: SP Felix Hernandez (18 GS, 6-5, 3.13 ERA, 128 Ks, 123.2 IP)

    Another year, another standout performance from Hernandez, who is undoubtedly one of the best pitchers in all of baseball. The performance of Kevin Millwood (16 GS, 3.69 ERA), on the other hand, has been a pleasant surprise. He could have some value at the deadline.

25. Philadelphia Phillies (37-50, Previous: 24)

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    Current Lineup

    SS Jimmy Rollins
    CF Shane Victorino
    2B Chase Utley
    1B Ryan Howard
    C Carlos Ruiz
    RF Hunter Pence
    LF Juan Pierre
    3B Placido Polanco
    Pitcher 

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Cliff Lee
    SP Cole Hamels
    SP Joe Blanton
    SP Kyle Kendrick
    SP Vance Worley
    CL Jonathan Papelbon

     

    Last Week's Record: 1-5

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: C Carlos Ruiz (.350/.412/.584, 13 HR, 46 RBI, 41 R)

    The Phillies have been without superstars Ryan Howard and Chase Utley for much of the season, and in their absence, Ruiz has stepped up in a big way as a run producer. He's on pace to shatter his career highs across the board, and his 13 home runs are already a personal best.

    Top Pitcher: SP Cole Hamels (17 GS, 10-4, 3.20 ERA, 118 Ks, 118 IP)

    In a season where Roy Halladay has been sidelined and Cliff Lee has struggled, Hamels has remained dominant and looks like a man pitching for his next contract. He has over a quarter of the team's wins, and if the Phillies decide to make him available, the asking price will be absolutely ridiculous.

24. Minnesota Twins (36-49, Previous: 26)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Denard Span
    RF Ben Revere
    C Joe Mauer
    LF Josh Willingham
    1B Justin Morneau
    3B Trevor Plouffe
    DH Ryan Doumit
    SS Brian Dozier
    2B Jamey Carroll

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Scott Diamond
    SP Francisco Liriano
    SP Brian Duensing
    SP Cole De Vries
    SP Samuel Deduno 
    CL Jared Burton

     

    Last Week's Record: 3-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: LF Josh Willingham (.261/.376/.536, 19 HR, 60 RBI, 47 R)

    Signed to a three-year, $21 million contract this offseason, Willingham has built off a solid season last year and been one of the AL's top run producers. Joe Mauer (.326 BA, 5 HR, 41 RBI) is healthy once again and was named to the All-Star team.

    Top Pitcher: SP Scott Diamond (12 GS, 7-3, 2.62 ERA, 45 Ks, 79 IP)

    After a season last year in which he went 4-14 with a 5.56 ERA in Triple-A, Diamond's first-half performance has been surprising to say the least. He doesn't strike guys out, but he throws strikes and gets ground balls, and it's resulted in tremendous success this season.

23. Kansas City Royals (37-47, Previous: 23)

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    Current Lineup

    LF Alex Gordon
    SS Alcides Escobar
    1B Eric Hosmer
    DH Billy Butler
    2B Yuniesky Betancourt
    3B Mike Moustakas
    RF Jeff Francoeur
    C Salvador Perez
    CF Jarrod Dyson

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Bruce Chen
    SP Luke Hochevar
    SP Luis Mendoza
    SP Jonathan Sanchez
    SP Everett Teaford 
    CL Jonathan Broxton

     

    Last Week's Record: 2-5

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: DH Billy Butler (.290/.361/.487, 16 HR, 52 RBI, 31 R)

    Butler will be the host Royals' lone representative at the All-Star Game, and he has earned his spot by taking his offensive game to the next level. Never a top-tier slugger, it looks as though Butler will shatter his previous high of 21 home runs this season and could reach 100 RBI for the first time.

    Top Pitcher: RP Jonathan Broxton (31 G, 21-of-24 Sv, 1.99 ERA, 23 Ks, 31.2 IP)

    Coming off of an injury-shortened and unimpressive season, the Royals took a chance on Broxton on a one-year, $4 million contract to set up Joakim Soria. He was pushed into closing duties when Soria was lost for the season, and he has been one of the league's best closers.

22. Miami Marlins (41-44, Previous: 20)

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    Current Lineup

    SS Jose Reyes
    3B Hanley Ramirez
    1B Carlos Lee
    LF Logan Morrison
    CF Justin Ruggiano
    2B Omar Infante
    RF Scott Cousins
    C John Buck
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Josh Johnson
    SP Mark Buehrle
    SP Ricky Nolasco
    SP Carlos Zambrano
    SP Anibal Sanchez
    CL Heath Bell

     

    Last Week's Record: 3-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: RF Giancarlo Stanton (.284/.364/.554, 19 HR, 50 RBI, 46 R)

    It's hard to believe Stanton is still only 22 years old, and he has gotten progressively better since breaking into the league in 2010. It's a shame that a recent knee injury will keep him out of the Home Run Derby, as he was made for that competition.

    Top Pitcher: SP Mark Buehrle (17 GS, 8-8, 3.25 ERA, 66 Ks, 113.2 IP)

    The Marlins' starting pitching has managed to stay healthy the entire first half, with each of the five starters making 17 starts so far. They all have an ERA of 4.35 or lower, but Buehrle is the only one of the group under 4.00, as he's proven to be worth the four-year, $58 million deal they inked him for this offseason.

21. Milwaukee Brewers (40-45, Previous: 22)

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    Current Lineup

    RF Norichika Aoki
    CF Nyjer Morgan
    LF Ryan Braun
    3B Aramis Ramirez
    1B Corey Hart
    2B Rickie Weeks
    C Martin Maldonado
    SS Cesar Izturis 
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Yovani Gallardo
    SP Zack Greinke
    SP Randy Wolf
    SP Michael Fiers
    SP Marco Estrada
    CL John Axford

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: LF Ryan Braun (.306/.391/.599, 24 HR, 61 RBI, 56 R)

    Braun is the NL home run leader at the break, as he is in the midst of another fantastic season even without Prince Fielder providing him protection in the lineup. He also has 15 stolen bases and is looking for his second straight 30-30 season.

    Top Pitcher: SP Zack Greinke (19 GS, 9-3, 3.32 ERA, 111 Ks, 111 IP)

    Greinke had an odd end to the first half, getting ejected from a game after just four pitches on Saturday and then starting on Sunday, but all in all, it was another terrific half of baseball from the right-hander.

    It is looking like the Brewers will make him available at the deadline. He'd be a huge addition to any contender.

20. Arizona Diamondbacks (42-43, Previous: 19)

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    Current Lineup

    SS Stephen Drew
    2B Aaron Hill
    RF Justin Upton
    LF Jason Kubel
    1B Paul Goldschmidt
    C Miguel Montero 
    CF Chris Young
    3B Ryan Roberts
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Ian Kennedy
    SP Trevor Cahill
    SP Wade Miley
    SP Trevor Bauer
    SP Josh Collmenter
    CL J.J. Putz

     

    Last Week's Record: 3-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: LF Jason Kubel (.293/.367/.533, 15 HR, 60 RBI, 42 R)

    Many questioned the Diamondbacks signing Kubel this offseason, myself included, as it pushed a good, young outfielder in Gerardo Parra to the bench. However, Kubel has been the team's top run producer with the team's stars struggling.

    Nods to Paul Goldschmidt (.302, 12, 42) and Aaron Hill (.300, 11, 40) for their high-level production as well.

    Top Pitcher: SP Wade Miley (17 G, 14 GS, 9-5, 3.04 ERA, 70 Ks, 100.2 IP)

    I don't think anyone would have guessed heading into the season that Miley would be the Diamondbacks' lone All-Star representative; he was not even in the rotation to start the season. Early struggles from Josh Collmenter opened the door for him to start, and he has been terrific.

19. Toronto Blue Jays (43-43, Previous: 17)

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    Current Lineup

    3B Brett Lawrie
    CF Colby Rasmus
    RF Jose Bautista
    1B Edwin Encarnacion
    DH Adam Lind
    SS Yunel Escobar
    LF Rajai Davis 
    2B Kelly Johnson
    C J.P. Arencibia

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Ricky Romero
    SP Henderson Alvarez
    SP Brett Cecil
    SP Carlos Villanueva
    SP Aaron Laffey
    CL Casey Janssen

     

    Last Week's Record: 3-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 1B/DH Edwin Encarnacion (.295/.382/.565, 23 HR, 58 RBI, 55 R)

    The fact that Encarnacion is not an All-Star this season is an absolute crime, as he has been not only the Blue Jays' best hitter, but one of the best sluggers in all of baseball. Jose Bautista (.244 BA, 27 HR, 65 RBI) has been a victim of bad luck this season, with a .216 BABIP.

    Top Pitcher: SP Brandon Morrow (13 GS, 7-4, 3.01 ERA, 67 Ks, 77.2 IP)

    One of three Blue Jays starters currently on the shelf, Morrow was enjoying a breakout season before a strained oblique sidelined him. Nonetheless, he has the best numbers of any pitcher on the staff, including an MLB-best three shutouts.

18. Boston Red Sox (43-43. Previous: 13)

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    Current Lineup

    LF Daniel Nava
    2B Nick Punto
    DH David Ortiz
    C Jarrod Saltalamacchia
    1B Adrian Gonzalez 
    3B Will Middlebrooks
    RF Cody Ross
    CF Ryan Kalish
    SS Mike Aviles  

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Josh Beckett
    SP Jon Lester
    SP Felix Doubront
    SP Franklin Morales
    SP Aaron Cook
    CL Alfredo Aceves

     

    Last Week's Record: 1-6

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: DH David Ortiz (.312/.406/.607, 22 HR, 57 RBI, 62 R)

    Ortiz continues to prove everyone who wrote him off after a down 2009 season wrong, as he's on pace for his best numbers since 2006, a year when he led the AL in home runs and RBI. While his average is low, catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia (.235 BA, 17 HR, 41 RBI) has been a nice surprise offensively.

    Top Pitcher: SP Felix Doubront (17 GS, 9-4, 4.41 ERA, 97 Ks, 96 IP)

    The Red Sox pitching has been horrible this season, and while many expected a reliever-turned-starter to be a solid addition to the rotation, it was Daniel Bard, not Doubront that those people were likely expecting that from.

    Unheralded middle reliever Scott Atchison (36 G, 45.1 IP, 1.79 ERA) also deserves a mention.

17. Oakland Athletics (43-43, Previous: 21)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Coco Crisp
    2B Jemile Weeks
    RF Josh Reddick
    LF Yoenis Cespedes
    DH Seth Smith
    3B Brandon Inge
    1B Brandon Moss
    C Kurt Suzuki
    SS Cliff Pennington 

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Bartolo Colon
    SP Tom Milone
    SP Jarrod Parker
    SP Travis Blackley
    SP A.J. Griffin
    CL Ryan Cook

     

    Last Week's Record: 5-1

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: RF Josh Reddick (.268/.348/.532, 20 HR, 43 RBI, 52 R)

    The A's acquired Reddick from the Red Sox this offseason in the Andrew Bailey deal, and while they were hopeful that he could hold his own in a run-production role, he has exceeded expectations by leaps and bounds.

    With a high of 23 home runs in the minors, his power numbers are shocking to say the least.

    Top Pitcher: RP Ryan Cook (38 G, 8-of-11 Sv, 1.41 ERA, 39 Ks, 38.1 IP)

    Picked up in the Trevor Cahill-for-Jarrod Parker deal with the Diamondbacks, Cook entered the season as the A's No. 21-ranked prospect. He has managed to work his way into the closer's role and be fantastic, earning himself an All-Star trip in the process.

16. Detroit Tigers (44-42, Previous: 18)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Austin Jackson
    LF Quintin Berry
    3B Miguel Cabrera
    1B Prince Fielder
    DH Delmon Young
    C Alex Avila
    SS Jhonny Peralta
    RF Brennan Boesch
    2B Ramon Santiago

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Justin Verlander
    SP Max Scherzer
    SP Rick Porcello
    SP Doug Fister
    SP Drew Smyly
    CL Jose Valverde

     

    Last Week's Record: 5-2

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 3B Miguel Cabrera (.324/.382/.557, 18 HR, 71 RBI, 52 R)

    Cabrera has once again put up peak numbers this season, and he has only benefited from having Prince Fielder (.299 BA, 15 HR, 63 RBI) hitting behind him. Center fielder Austin Jackson (.332 BA, 9 HR, 38 RBI) deserves mention, as he has taken a huge step forward this season and would have terrific numbers if he hadn't gotten hurt.

    Top Pitcher: SP Justin Verlander (18 GS, 9-5, 2.58 ERA, 128 Ks, 132.2 IP)

    Coming off of an MVP season, Verlander has been fantastic once again, proving to be one of the most durable and consistent starters in all of baseball. Now if only the team could get some sort of consistency from its other four starters.

15. Cleveland Indians (44-41, Previous: 16)

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    Current Lineup

    RF Shin-Soo Choo
    SS Asdrubal Cabrera
    2B Jason Kipnis
    DH Travis Hafner
    C Carlos Santana
    CF Michael Brantley
    1B Casey Kotchman
    LF Johnny Damon
    3B Jack Hannahan

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Justin Masterson
    SP Ubaldo Jimenez
    SP Derek Lowe
    SP Josh Tomlin
    SP Zach McAllister
    CL Chris Perez

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: RF Shin-Soo Choo (.299/.384/.492, 10 HR, 34 RBI, 57 R)

    While the middle infield duo of Asdrubal Cabrera (.286 BA, 11 HR, 42 RBI) and Jason Kipnis (.277 BA, 11 HR, 49 RBI) have gotten the attention, Choo has been terrific in transitioning to the leadoff spot in the Indians lineup. His .384 OBP puts him in a tie for sixth with Josh Hamilton in the AL.

    Top Pitcher: RP Chris Perez (34 G, 24-of-26 Sv, 3.34 ERA, 35 Ks, 32.1 IP)

    In three seasons as the Indians closer, Perez has gone 83-of-93 on save chances and posted a 2.51 ERA, as he has become one of the elite closers in baseball. He's making his second straight All-Star appearance this season. At just 26, he should have plenty more ahead of him.

14. Tampa Bay Rays (45-41, Previous: 14)

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    Current Lineup

    LF Desmond Jennings
    1B Carlos Pena
    CF B.J. Upton
    DH Luke Scott
    RF Ben Zobrist
    2B Jeff Keppinger
    3B Sean Rodriguez
    C Jose Molina
    SS Elliot Johnson

     

    Current Rotation

    SP James Shields
    SP David Price
    SP Matt Moore
    SP Alex Cobb
    SP Jeremy Hellickson
    CL Fernando Rodney

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: RF Matt Joyce (.279/.387/.512, 11 HR, 34 RBI, 36 R)

    There may be no injured player whose team misses him more than the Rays do Evan Longoria, as their offense has been terrible with him on the shelf. From a production standpoint, Joyce has been their top hitter, but he is also currently on the DL.

    Top Pitcher: SP David Price (17 GS, 11-4, 2.82 ERA, 105 Ks, 111.2 IP)

    Price has become one of the game's best pitchers over the past three seasons, and he is well on his way to the best season of his career. Closer Fernando Rodney (25-of-26 Sv, 0.93 ERA) has been phenomenal as well, and he'll be a first-time All-Star at the age of 35.

13. Baltimore Orioles (45-40, Previous: 12)

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    Current Lineup

    LF Xavier Avery
    SS J.J. Hardy
    RF Chris Davis
    CF Adam Jones 
    DH Jim Thome
    C Matt Wieters
    3B Wilson Betemit
    1B Mark Reynolds
    2B Robert Andino

     

    Current Rotation 

    SP Jason Hammel
    SP Wei-Yin Chen
    SP Miguel Gonzalez
    SP TBD (likely Chris Tillman)
    SP TBD
    CL Jim Johnson 

     

    Last Week's Record: 3-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: CF Adam Jones (.298/.330/.534, 20 HR, 44 RBI, 54 R)

    Jones has emerged as a legitimate star this season; he has gotten progressively better in each of his five seasons with the Orioles. He's the face of an up-and-coming franchise, and a seven-year, $91.65 million extension will keep him in Baltimore through 2018.

    Top Pitcher: SP Jason Hammel (17 GS, 8-5, 3.47 ERA, 101 Ks, 106.1 IP)

    The trade of Jeremy Guthrie to the Rockies for Hammel and reliever Matt Lindstrom (18 G, 2.50 ERA) has proven to be one of the steals of the offseason, as Hammel has stepped up as the ace of the staff.

    Closer Jim Johnson (26-of-27 Sv, 1.21 ERA) has been phenomenal as well.

12. Los Angeles Dodgers (47-40, Previous: 10)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Elian Herrera
    2B Mark Ellis
    LF Bobby Abreu
    1B James Loney
    RF Juan Rivera
    3B Jerry Hairston Jr.
    C A.J. Ellis
    SS Luis Cruz
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Clayton Kershaw
    SP Chad Billingsley
    SP Chris Capuano
    SP Aaron Harang
    SP Nathan Eovaldi
    CL Kenley Jansen

     

    Last Week's Record: 3-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: RF Andre Ethier (.291/.357/.491, 10 HR, 55 RBI, 36 R)

    With both Ethier and Matt Kemp (.355 BA, 12 HR, 28 RBI) both currently on the DL, the Dodgers lineup does not look like that of a team in the thick of things on the NL West. Ethier had been great in Kemp's absence before going down with a strained oblique at the end of June.

    Top Pitcher: SP Chris Capuano (18 GS, 9-4, 2.91 ERA, 100 Ks, 111.1 IP)

    One of the best stories of the first half, Capuano enters the break with the same ERA and three more wins than teammate Clayton Kershaw, yet he was not named to the All-Star team. Closer Kenley Jansen (15-of-18 Sv, 14.4 K/9) has also been dominant in his first full season in the ninth-inning role.

11. Atlanta Braves (46-39, Previous: 15)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Michael Bourn
    LF Martin Prado
    RF Jason Heyward
    3B Chipper Jones
    1B Freddie Freeman
    2B Dan Uggla
    C Brian McCann
    SS Andrelton Simmons
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Tim Hudson
    SP Tommy Hanson
    SP Mike Minor
    SP Randall Delgado
    SP Jair Jurrjens
    CL Craig Kimbrel

     

    Last Week's Record: 5-2

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 3B Chipper Jones (.318/.396/.480, 6 HR, 33 RBI, 25 R)

    The Braves lineup has been a disappointment this season, and Jones is the selection here despite playing in just 49 games to this point. However, he has had a profound effect on the team when healthy, as the Braves are 29-20 with him in the lineup and 17-19 without him.

    Top Pitcher: SP Tommy Hanson (18 GS, 10-5, 3.71 ERA, 93 Ks, 106.2 IP)

    Hanson continues to quietly rank among the best young pitchers in baseball, and he is having another terrific season. He is just two wins away from a new career high and has proven healthy after making just 22 starts last year.

    Closer Craig Kimbrel (25-of-26 Sv, 1.36 ERA, 15.3 K/9) is in just his second season, but he may very well be the best closer in baseball.

10. St. Louis Cardinals (46-40, Previous: 11)

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    Current Lineup

    SS Rafael Furcal
    CF John Jay
    LF Matt Holliday
    RF Carlos Beltran
    1B Allen Craig
    3B David Freese
    2B Daniel Descalso
    C Tony Cruz
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Kyle Lohse
    SP Adam Wainwright
    SP Lance Lynn
    SP Jake Westbrook
    SP Joe Kelly
    CL Jason Motte

     

    Last Week's Record: 5-2

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: RF Carlos Beltran (.296/.382/.542, 20 HR, 65 RBI, 50 R)

    The Cardinals signed Beltran to a two-year, $26 million deal this offseason to help replace some of the production lost by the departure of Albert Pujols. To this point, he has outperformed him across the board and helped carry a Cardinals team that has been hit hard by injuries.

    Top Pitcher: SP Lance Lynn (17 GS, 11-4, 3.41 ERA, 105 Ks, 103 IP)

    This was a tough call, as Kyle Lohse (9-2, 2.79 ERA) has been fantastic as well, but without the production that Lynn has provided in filling Chris Carpenter's rotation spot, who knows where they'd be right now?

    Setup man Mitchell Boggs (39 G, 1.91 ERA) is also enjoying a breakout season.

9. San Francisco Giants (46-40, Previous: 5)

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    Current Lineup 

    RF Gregor Blanco
    2B Ryan Theriot
    LF Melky Cabrera
    C Buster Posey
    CF Angel Pagan
    3B Pablo Sandoval
    1B Brandon Belt
    SS Brandon Crawford
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Tim Lincecum
    SP Madison Bumgarner
    SP Matt Cain
    SP Barry Zito
    SP Ryan Vogelsong
    CL Santiago Casilla

     

    Last Week's Record: 1-5

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: LF Melky Cabrera (.353/.391/.519, 8 HR, 44 RBI, 55 R)

    When the Royals traded Cabrera to the Giants for starter Jonathan Sanchez this offseason, it looked like a deal that would benefit both sides. It was certainly a wise move by the Royals to sell high on Cabrera, who was coming off a career year.

    Instead, he has only built off of last year's .307 BA, 18 HR, 87 RBI season, while Sanchez has struggled mightily.

    Top Pitcher: SP Matt Cain (17 GS, 9-3, 2.62 ERA, 118 Ks, 120.1 IP)

    Cain turned in one of the most dominant pitching performances of all time in throwing a perfect game against the Astros back in June, and he has been a true staff ace all season for the Giants. Last year's breakout star Ryan Vogelsong has been even better this season (7-4, 2.36 ERA) and was a major snub when All-Star rosters were announced.

8. Cincinnati Reds (47-38, Previous: 8)

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    Current Lineup

    SS Zack Cozart
    CF Drew Stubbs
    1B Joey Votto
    2B Brandon Phillips
    RF Jay Bruce
    LF Ryan Ludwick
    3B Scott Rolen
    C Ryan Hanigan
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Johnny Cueto
    SP Mat Latos
    SP Bronson Arroyo
    SP Homer Bailey
    SP Mike Leake
    CL Aroldis Chapman

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 1B Joey Votto (.348/.471/.617, 14 HR, 48 RBI, 50 R)

    Ineffectiveness at the top of the lineup has kept Votto's run production numbers down, but his .471 on-base percentage is absolutely ridiculous.

    He's unquestionably the top first baseman in the NL now that Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder are in the AL, but you can make a case that he's better than both of those guys right now anyway.

    Top Pitcher: SP Johnny Cueto (18 GS, 10-5, 2.39 ERA, 91 Ks, 120.1 IP)

    Cueto has been the definition of an ace for the Reds this season, as he ranks among the NL leaders in most categories, including being tied for second in innings pitched.

    Flame-thrower Aroldis Chapman has been solid in the closer's role. He has posted a 16.3 K/9 mark so far this season.

7. New York Mets (46-40, Previous: 6)

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    Current Lineup

    SS Ruben Tejada
    2B Daniel Murphy
    3B David Wright
    1B Ike Davis
    RF Lucas Duda
    LF Scott Hairston
    C Josh Thole
    CF Kirk Nieuwenhuis
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP R.A. Dickey
    SP Johan Santana
    SP Dillon Gee
    SP Jon Niese
    SP Chris Young
    CL Bobby Parnell

     

    Last Week's Record: 3-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 3B David Wright (.351/.441/.563, 11 HR, 59 RBI, 56 R)

    Wright has been the best third baseman in the National League this season by a long shot, and in a contract year (option for next season) he is certainly making his case for a big payday. He's hitting nearly 100 points higher than he did last season and is only two RBI away from last season's total.

    Top Pitcher: SP R.A. Dickey (17 GS, 12-1, 2.40 ERA, 123 Ks, 120 IP)

    Dickey has been dominant this season like no knuckleballer has before, as he is not only fooling hitters with the pitch but he is striking them out at an impressive rate. He's spiked from 5.8 K/9 last season to 9.8 K/9 this season.

    He strung together 44.2 innings of scoreless ball earlier this season and has been baseball's best pitcher in the first half. 

6. Chicago White Sox (47-38, Previous: 7)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Alejandro De Aza
    3B Kevin Youkilis
    DH Adam Dunn
    1B Paul Konerko
    RF Alex Rios
    C A.J. Pierzynski
    LF Dayan Viciedo
    SS Alexei Ramirez
    2B Gordon Beckham 

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Jake Peavy
    SP Gavin Floyd
    SP Chris Sale
    SP Dylan Axelrod
    SP Jose Quintana
    CL Addison Reed

     

    Last Week's Record: 5-1

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 1B Paul Konerko (.329/.404/.528, 14 HR, 42 RBI, 40 R)

    Konerko continues to put up elite numbers, as he is looking for his third straight .300 BA, 30 HR, 100 RBI season at the age of 36.

    Comeback Player of the Year candidate Alex Rios (.318 BA, 12 HR, 49 RBI) has improved drastically over his 2011 stat line (.227 BA, 13 HR, 44 RBI), and he posted that over 537 at-bats.

    Top Pitcher: SP Chris Sale (16 G, 15 GS, 10-2, 2.19 ERA, 98 Ks, 102.2 IP)

    Sale has made a seamless transition to the rotation this season, as the 23-year-old has dominated AL hitters all year. The team will be careful not to overwork him in the second half as he approaches uncharted territory as far as innings pitched are concerned.

    All-Star Jake Peavy (7-5, 2.85 ERA) has enjoyed a nice bounce-back season.

5. Pittsburgh Pirates (48-37, Previous: 9)

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    Current Lineup

    LF Drew Sutton
    2B Neil Walker
    CF Andrew McCutchen
    RF Garrett Jones
    1B Casey McGehee
    3B Pedro Alvarez
    C Rod Barajas
    SS Clint Barmes
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Erik Bedard
    SP James McDonald
    SP A.J. Burnett
    SP Kevin Correia
    SP Jeff Karstens
    CL Joel Hanrahan

     

    Last Week's Record: 6-1

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: CF Andrew McCutchen (.362/.414/.625, 18 HR, 60 RBI, 58 R)

    McCutchen has meant more to his team this season than perhaps any other player in the league, as the Pirates' offense has struggled much of the season but he has put up MVP-caliber numbers. The rest of the offense is slowly coming along, and that should only help a terrific pitching staff.

    Top Pitcher: SP James McDonald (17 GS, 9-3, 2.37 ERA, 100 Ks, 110 IP)

    The whole Pirates pitching staff has been great, with a 3.47 ERA that ranks fourth in the NL, and that is a big reason why the Pirates have been so good to this point. With that said, McDonald has emerged as a legitimate staff ace as he has finally tapped into his vast potential.

4. Los Angeles Angels (48-38, Previous: 4)

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    Current Lineup

    CF Mike Trout
    RF Torii Hunter
    1B Albert Pujols
    LF Mark Trumbo
    DH Kendrys Morales
    3B Alberto Callaspo
    2B Howie Kendrick
    SS Erick Aybar
    C Bobby Wilson

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Jered Weaver
    SP Ervin Santana
    SP C.J. Wilson
    SP TBD
    SP TBD
    CL Ernesto Frieri

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: CF Mike Trout (.341/.397/.562, 12 HR, 40 RBI, 57 R)

    This was as tough a decision as any, as Mark Trumbo (.306 BA, 22 HR, 57 RBI) has been a force in the middle of the Angels lineup, but the team's season really turned around when Trout was called up.

    The team has gone 40-24 with him in the lineup, and if the season ended today, he'd be my choice for AL MVP.

    Top Pitcher: SP Jered Weaver (15 GS, 10-1, 1.96 ERA, 73 Ks, 96.2 IP)

    Weaver has been the most dominant pitcher in the AL this season, as he leads the AL with a 1.96 ERA and a 0.900 WHIP. C.J. Wilson (9-5, 2.43 ERA) and reliever Ernesto Frieri (11-of-11 Sv, 0.00 ERA) certainly deserve mention as well.

3. Washington Nationals (49-34, Previous: 3)

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    Current Lineup

    LF Steve Lombardozzi
    CF Bryce Harper
    3B Ryan Zimmerman
    RF Michael Morse
    1B Adam LaRoche
    SS Ian Desmond
    2B Danny Espinosa
    C Jesus Flores
    Pitcher

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Stephen Strasburg
    SP Gio Gonzalez
    SP Jordan Zimmermann
    SP Edwin Jackson
    SP Ross Detwiler
    CL Tyler Clippard

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-2

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: SS Ian Desmond (.285/.316/.515, 17 HR, 51 RBI, 46 R)

    After hitting a combined 18 home runs over his first two full seasons in the league, Desmond has found his power stroke in Year 3 and has been the NL's most productive shortstop by a long shot. This may be the last year for a while that Bryce Harper (.282 BA, 8 HR, 25 RBI) doesn't take home this honor.

    Top Pitcher: SP Gio Gonzalez (17 GS, 12-3, 2.92 ERA, 118 Ks, 101.2 IP)

    You can take your pick between Gonzalez and Stephen Strasburg (9-4, 2.82 ERA, 128 Ks), as they have both been among the best pitchers in all of baseball this season. I'll take Gonzalez's wins over Strasburg's higher strikeout rate.

    Closer Tyler Clippard (14-of-15 Sv, 1.93 ERA) is also worthy of mention for the job he's done filling in for the injured Drew Storen.

2. Texas Rangers (52-34, Previous: 1)

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    Current Lineup

    2B Ian Kinsler
    SS Elvis Andrus
    LF Josh Hamilton
    3B Adrian Beltre
    1B Michael Young
    RF Nelson Cruz
    DH David Murphy
    C Mike Napoli
    CF Leonys Martin

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Yu Darvish
    SP Matt Harrison
    SP Roy Oswalt
    SP Scott Feldman
    SP Derek Holland
    CL Joe Nathan 

     

    Last Week's Record: 2-4

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: LF Josh Hamilton (.308/.380/.635, 27 HR, 75 RBI, 54 R)

    Hamilton has cooled off a bit after a very impressive start, but still ranks among the AL leaders across the board and remains a front runner for AL MVP honors. Third baseman Adrian Beltre (.326 BA, 15 HR, 54 RBI) is having one of the best seasons of his career as well.

    Top Pitcher: SP Matt Harrison (17 GS, 11-4, 3.10 ERA, 70 Ks, 113.1 IP)

    Entering the season, the Rangers had lost ace C.J. Wilson, signed Yu Darvish and moved Neftali Feliz to the rotation, so Harrison understandably entered the season to little fanfare.

    However, he has been the team's most reliable starter this season, and they will need him to keep pitching at a high level in the second half.

1. New York Yankees (52-33, Previous: 2)

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    Current Lineup

    SS Derek Jeter
    CF Curtis Granderson
    3B Alex Rodriguez
    2B Robinson Cano
    1B Mark Teixeira
    RF Nick Swisher
    LF Raul Ibanez
    DH Eric Chavez
    C Russell Martin

     

    Current Rotation

    SP Hiroki Kuroda
    SP Phil Hughes
    SP Ivan Nova
    SP Freddy Garcia
    SP TBD
    CL Rafael Soriano

     

    Last Week's Record: 4-3

     

    Midseason Awards

    Top Hitter: 2B Robinson Cano (.313/.374/.578, 20 HR, 51 RBI, 57 R)

    Cano is without question the top offensive second baseman in the game today and one of the premier hitters in all of baseball. He has a team option for next season, but will likely be looking for a massive extension. A solid power display by Curtis Granderson (23 HR, 48 RBI) deserves mention as well.

    Top Pitcher: RP Rafael Soriano (36 G, 20-of-21 Sv, 1.60 ERA, 34 Ks, 33.2 IP)

    While CC Sabathia (9-3, 3.45 ERA) is having his usual strong season, Soriano has been huge stepping in for the injured Mariano Rivera. After a somewhat disappointing first season in New York, he has solved what could have been a major problem for the Yankees. Now, if only they could get a few reliable starting pitchers.