MLB Power Rankings: Post-1st Month of Free Agency

Joel ReuterFeatured ColumnistNovember 26, 2012

MLB Power Rankings: Post-1st Month of Free Agency

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    We are a month into the MLB offseason, and while it has been more rumors than actual action, there have been a handful of signings and trades made to shuffle up my offseason power rankings.

    Since it's impossible to accurately predict where everyone will wind up signing, the power rankings that follow serve as a baseline for where each team stands as of now.

    That is to say, these rankings reflect where I would place each team if the season started today with their rosters as is.

    This will be updated regularly as free-agent signings are made and rosters begin to take shape.

     

    *Note: Rosters taken from MLBDepthCharts.com.

30. Houston Astros (Previous: 30)

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    Offseason Outlook

    It's been a quiet offseason for the Houston Astros thus far, though they did add six players to their 40-man roster. That includes top pitching prospect Jarred Cosart, who could earn a rotation spot at some point in 2013.

    They are still likely to sign a veteran to DH and could look to add a low-cost innings-eater to their rotation to help take some pressure off of an inexperienced bullpen.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    2B Jose Altuve
    DH Scott Moore
    SS Jed Lowrie
    1B Brett Wallace
    RF Fernando Martinez
    CF Justin Maxwell
    C Jason Castro
    LF J.D. Martinez
    3B Matt Dominguez

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Lucas Harrell
    SP Bud Norris
    SP Jordan Lyles
    SP Dallas Keuchel
    SP Rudy Owens
    CP Wilton Lopez 

29. Miami Marlins (Previous: 24)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Miami Marlins, as they've done before, blew things up with a blockbuster trade with the Blue Jays that sent Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle, Emilio Bonifacio and John Buck to Toronto.

    They signed Juan Pierre to a one-year, $1.6 million deal. They could look to add another veteran or two to round out the lineup, but it's likely going to be a long year in Miami. They could also still deal remaining veterans with value like Logan Morrison and Ricky Nolasco, fully committing to the rebuild.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    LF Juan Pierre
    3B Yunel Escobar
    RF Giancarlo Stanton
    1B Logan Morrison
    CF Justin Ruggiano
    C Rob Brantly
    2B Donovan Solano
    SS Adeiny Hechavarria
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Ricky Nolasco
    SP Henderson Alvarez
    SP Wade LeBlanc
    SP Nathan Eovaldi
    SP Jacob Turner
    CP Steven Cishek

28. Cleveland Indians (Previous: 29)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Cleveland Indians have made one trade so far this offseason, acquiring Mike Aviles and Yan Gomes from the Blue Jays for pitcher Esmil Rogers. Expect more to be on the way, as the team could move Shin-Soo Choo, Chris Perez, Asdrubal Cabrera and others.

    Gomes now projects as the starting first baseman after the team designated Matt LaPorta for assignment and outrighted him to the minors. Gomes hit .328 BA, 13 HR, 59 RBI in 305 Triple-A at-bats last season.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    RF Shin-Soo Choo
    2B Jason Kipnis
    SS Asdrubal Cabrera
    C Carlos Santana
    CF Michael Brantley
    3B Lonnie Chisenhall
    1B Yan Gomes
    DH Mike Aviles
    LF Ezequiel Carrera

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Justin Masterson
    SP Ubaldo Jimenez
    SP Zach McAllister
    SP David Huff
    SP Carlos Carrasco
    CP Chris Perez 

27. Minnesota Twins (Previous: 28)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Minnesota Twins continue their search for some starting pitching to back 2012 breakout ace Scott Diamond, and they will likely sign at least a couple starters in looking for a way to better back what was a solid offense.

    They could also be active on the trade market, where Josh Willingham and Denard Span would both garner significant interest if made available.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

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

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Scott Diamond
    SP Liam Hendriks
    SP Cole De Vries
    SP Brian Duensing
    SP Nick Blackburn
    CP Glen Perkins 

26. Chicago Cubs (Previous: 27)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Chicago Cubs have made a pair of small moves so far this offseason, signing Scott Baker to a one-year deal coming off of Tommy John surgery and adding backup catcher Dioner Navarro on a one-year contract as well.

    They still need to sign a starter or two, seeing as Baker won't be ready to open the season. They will also have to decide whether or not to tender a contract to Ian Stewart at third base.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    RF David DeJesus
    2B Darwin Barney
    1B Anthony Rizzo
    LF Alfonso Soriano
    SS Starlin Castro
    3B Ian Stewart
    C Welington Castillo
    CF Tony Campana
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Matt Garza
    SP Jeff Samardzija
    SP Travis Wood
    SP Casey Coleman
    SP Chris Rusin
    CP Carlos Marmol

25. Colorado Rockies (Previous: 25)

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    Offseason Outlook

    There is no question the Colorado Rockies need to address their rotation this offseason; they posted the worst ERA in baseball at 5.22.

    They could look to deal an outfielder to open up a starting spot for Tyler Colvin. More than likely, though, they'll look to add a mid-level starter or two on the free-agent market to help back what was a very good offense last season even without Troy Tulowitzki.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    CF Dexter Fowler
    2B Josh Rutledge
    LF Carlos Gonzalez
    SS Troy Tulowitzki
    RF Michael Cuddyer
    1B Todd Helton
    C Wilin Rosario
    3B Chris Nelson
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Jorge De La Rosa
    SP Jhoulys Chacin
    SP Juan Nicasio
    SP Drew Pomeranz
    SP Alex White
    CP Rafael Betancourt 

24. Kansas City Royals (Previous: 26)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Kansas City Royals were impressed enough with Jeremy Guthrie over his 14 starts with the team after coming over at the trade deadline that they brought him back on a three-year, $25 million deal. He went 5-3 with a 3.16 ERA with the Royals last season.

    With Guthrie and Ervin Santana atop the rotation, their staff should be improved, but they may still look to add an ace-caliber starter via trade. They are reportedly willing to deal top prospect Wil Myers to get one (h/t Yahoo! Sports).

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    CF Lorenzo Cain
    SS Alcides Escobar
    LF Alex Gordon
    DH Billy Butler
    3B Mike Moustakas
    C Salvador Perez
    1B Eric Hosmer
    RF Jeff Francoeur
    2B Chris Getz

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Jeremy Guthrie
    SP Ervin Santana

    SP Bruce Chen
    SP Luke Hochevar
    SP Luis Mendoza
    CP Greg Holland 

23. San Diego Padres (Previous: 23)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The San Diego Padres were dealt a blow when young catcher Yasmani Grandal was suspended for a positive PED test, but they still have a solid option behind the plate in Nick Hundley for the first 50 games.

    The team added starter Tyson Ross in a four-player deal with the A's, and he gives the team some depth and could fill the No. 5 starter role. The team is likely still in the hunt to sign a veteran starter this offseason, though.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    SS Everth Cabrera
    2B Logan Forsythe
    3B Chase Headley
    LF Carlos Quentin
    1B Yonder Alonso
    RF Wil Venable
    CF Cameron Maybin
    C Nick Hundley
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Edinson Volquez
    SP Clayton Richard
    SP Andrew Cashner
    SP Eric Stults
    SP Tyson Ross
    CP Huston Street

22. Seattle Mariners (Previous: 22)

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    Offseason Outlook

    If they can find ways to improve their offense, the Seattle Mariners have as much room to move up these ranking this offseason as any team. Their impressive, young pitching prospects should make their staff a formidable one, but they need a lot of help offensively.

    Signing Josh Hamilton remains an outside possibility, but even if they don't make a splash of that caliber, it won't be hard for the team to upgrade a lineup that has ranked last in runs and batting average the past three years.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    2B Dustin Ackley
    CF Franklin Gutierrez
    3B Kyle Seager
    DH Jesus Montero
    C John Jaso
    1B Justin Smoak
    LF Michael Saunders
    RF Casper Wells
    SS Brendan Ryan

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Felix Hernandez
    SP Jason Vargas
    SP Hisashi Iwakuma 
    SP Erasmo Ramirez
    SP Blake Beavan
    CP Tom Wilhelmsen

21. New York Mets (Previous: 19)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The New York Mets drop a few spaces in the rankings here, not so much because they have yet to add anyone this offseason, but more because they have been unable to reach an extension with either R.A. Dickey or David Wright to this point.

    The team is not expected to have much to spend, but if they are unable to re-sign those two and opt to trade them, it would significantly change the approach of their offseason. Either way, something needs to be decided soon in New York.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    SS Ruben Tejada
    2B Daniel Murphy
    3B David Wright
    1B Ike Davis
    LF Lucas Duda
    RF Mike Baxter
    CF Andres Torres
    C Josh Thole
    Pitcher 

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP R.A. Dickey
    SP Johan Santana
    SP Jon Niese
    SP Dillon Gee
    SP Matt Harvey
    CP Frank Francisco 

20. Boston Red Sox (Previous: 21)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Boston Red Sox have a leg up on some of the other teams who struggled in 2012 because they have a ton of money to spend. They made their first significant move of the offseason when they signed Jonny Gomes to a two-year, $10 million deal.

    Starting pitching remains their biggest need, but they may also look to add a first baseman with some power, another corner outfielder and could deal one of their catchers following the signing of David Ross.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    CF Jacoby Ellsbury
    RF Daniel Nava
    2B Dustin Pedroia
    DH David Ortiz
    3B Will Middlebrooks
    C Jarrod Saltalamacchia
    LF Jonny Gomes
    1B Jerry Sands
    SS Jose Iglesias

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Jon Lester
    SP Clay Buchholz
    SP Felix Doubront
    SP John Lackey
    SP Franklin Morales
    CP Andrew Bailey

19. Chicago White Sox (Previous: 18)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Chicago White Sox already made a big move this offseason when they re-signed Jake Peavy to a two-year, $29 million contract. He returns to the No. 2 rotation spot behind emerging stud Chris Sale.

    Third base remains a question mark. The team has to decide if it's comfortable turning the catching duties over to Tyler Flowers or if it will make a run at re-signing A.J. Pierzynski or one of the other free-agent options.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    CF Alejandro De Aza
    SS Alexei Ramirez
    DH Adam Dunn
    1B Paul Konerko
    RF Alex Rios
    LF Dayan Viciedo
    C Tyler Flowers
    2B Gordon Beckham
    3B Brent Morel

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Chris Sale
    SP Jake Peavy
    SP John Danks
    SP Gavin Floyd
    SP Jose Quintana
    CP Addison Reed 

18. Pittsburgh Pirates (Previous: 17)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Pittsburgh Pirates will be looking to get over the hump this coming season after making a legitimate run at the playoffs the last two seasons before falling apart down the stretch.

    A veteran starting pitcher to fill out the rotation appears to be their biggest need, but they will likely also look to add some offensive depth and some bullpen help.

    However, their biggest additions will come from within. Starters Gerrit Cole and Jeff Lock along with outfielder Starling Marte are all expected to make an impact in 2013.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    LF Jose Tabata
    2B Neil Walker
    CF Andrew McCutchen
    1B Garrett Jones
    3B Pedro Alvarez
    RF Travis Snider
    SS Clint Barmes
    C Michael McKenry
    Pitcher 

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP A.J. Burnett
    SP Wandy Rodriguez
    SP James McDonald
    SP Jeff Karstens
    SP Kyle McPherson
    CP Joel Hanrahan

17. Milwaukee Brewers (Previous: 16)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Milwaukee Brewers will be looking to find some pitching to back what was one of the better offenses in the National League last season.

    With an inexperienced rotation behind Yovani Gallardo, and a bullpen that had an MLB-worst 4.66 ERA last season, there is plenty of room to improve the staff. The Brewers will likely spend some money to fill those holes as they look to contend for a playoff spot in the NL Central.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    RF Norichika Aoki
    2B Rickie Weeks
    LF Ryan Braun
    3B Aramis Ramirez
    1B Corey Hart
    C Jonathan Lucroy
    CF Carlos Gomez
    SS Jean Segura
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Yovani Gallardo
    SP Marco Estrada
    SP Michael Fiers
    SP Chris Narveson
    SP Mark Rogers
    CP John Axford

16. Philadelphia Phillies (Previous: 15)

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    Offseason Outlook

    Though they struggled in 2012, the Philadelphia Phillies are still a team in a good position to win now if they can add a few pieces to their stable of superstars this offseason.

    Center field is a clear area of need, as is third base after the team declined their option on Placido Polanco. They could also look to add another starting pitcher because they have little proven depth behind their current five-man staff.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    SS Jimmy Rollins
    RF Nate Schierholtz
    2B Chase Utley
    1B Ryan Howard
    C Carlos Ruiz
    LF Domonic Brown
    CF John Mayberry Jr.
    3B Kevin Frandsen
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Roy Halladay
    SP Cliff Lee
    SP Cole Hamels
    SP Vance Worley
    SP Kyle Kendrick
    CP Jonathan Papelbon 

15. Tampa Bay Rays (Previous: 14)

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    Offseason Outlook

    Offense, offense, offense. That is where the Tampa Bay Rays' offseason focus will be. Their lineup doesn't strike much fear into their opponents outside of Ben Zobrist and Evan Longoria.

    With an abundance of starting pitching, this could be the offseason that the Rays opt to deal one of their promising, young pitchers for an impact bat.

    Jeremy Hellickson, James Shields and Matt Moore would all bring a huge return. Given their depth, the Rays would still be in a good position from a pitching standpoint.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    CF Desmond Jennings
    LF Sam Fuld
    SS Ben Zobrist
    3B Evan Longoria
    RF Matt Joyce
    DH Brandon Guyer
    2B Sean Rodriguez
    1B Stephen Vogt
    C Jose Molina

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP David Price
    SP James Shields
    SP Jeremy Hellickson
    SP Matt Moore
    SP Jeff Niemann
    CP Fernando Rodney

14. Arizona Diamondbacks (Previous: 13)

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    Offseason Outlook

    While they addressed a pair of needs with an early-season trade that brought aboard Heath Bell and Cliff Pennington, the Arizona Diamondbacks could still look to further improve things this offseason.

    It appears now that the team won't move Justin Upton, but they could look to deal another outfielder. They have a pair of solid backup options in Gerardo Parra and A.J. Pollock along with Jason Kubel and Adam Eaton slated to start.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    CF Adam Eaton
    2B Aaron Hill
    RF Justin Upton
    C Miguel Montero
    1B Paul Goldschmidt
    LF Jason Kubel
    3B Chris Johnson
    SS Cliff Pennington
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Ian Kennedy
    SP Trevor Cahill
    SP Wade Miley
    SP Trevor Bauer
    SP Tyler Skaggs
    CP J.J. Putz 

13. New York Yankees (Previous: 12)

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    Offseason Outlook

    Obviously the New York Yankees' lineup will look quite a bit different when the season opens compared to what it is now. As things stand, though, they have a number of areas that need to be addressed.

    The departures of Nick Swisher and Russell Martin will need to be addressed, as will the DH position after Raul Ibanez filled that role last year. The team did take care of one issue in re-signing Hiroki Kuroda to a one-year, $15 million deal after a 16-win season in 2012.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    LF Brett Gardner
    SS Derek Jeter
    2B Robinson Cano
    1B Mark Teixeira
    3B Alex Rodriguez
    CF Curtis Granderson
    DH Eduardo Nunez
    RF Chris Dickerson
    C Chris Stewart

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP CC Sabathia
    SP Hiroki Kuroda
    SP Phil Hughes
    SP Ivan Nova
    SP David Phelps
    CP David Robertson

12. Atlanta Braves (Previous: 11)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Atlanta Braves have a pair of holes to address this offseason. They need to replace center fielder and leadoff hitter Michael Bourn as well as the retired Chipper Jones at third base.

    Their pitching staff alone should be enough to make them competitors in the NL, but how they address those lineup needs could mean the difference between postseason contender and title contender.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    SS Andrelton Simmons
    LF Martin Prado
    RF Jason Heyward
    1B Freddie Freeman
    2B Dan Uggla
    3B Juan Francisco
    CF Jordan Schafer
    C Gerald Laird (Brian McCann doubtful to start season)
    Pitcher 

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Tim Hudson
    SP Kris Medlen
    SP Tommy Hanson
    SP Mike Minor
    SP Paul Maholm 
    CP Craig Kimbrel

11. Texas Rangers (Previous: 10)

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    Offseason Outlook

    How the Texas Rangers address the departures of Josh Hamilton and Mike Napoli will be the most important aspect of this offseason. Their once-dynamic offense looks little more than average at this point.

    They will likely also look to add another frontline starter to a staff that has a lot of question marks after Yu Darvish and Matt Harrison, though they have enough internal options to put together a solid staff even if they don't sign anyone.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    2B Ian Kinsler
    SS Elvis Andrus
    3B Adrian Beltre
    RF Nelson Cruz
    LF David Murphy
    DH Michael Young
    1B Mitch Moreland
    C Geovany Soto
    CF Leonys Martin

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Yu Darvish
    SP Derek Holland
    SP Matt Harrison
    SP Alexi Ogando
    SP Martin Perez
    CP Joe Nathan

10. Los Angeles Dodgers (Previous: 9)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The free-spending Los Angeles Dodgers are one of the front-runners to land Zack Greinke this offseason, and it appears they will add a top-tier starter to slot behind ace Clayton Kershaw in the rotation.

    It will be interesting to see how all of the pieces they acquired last season mesh together in their first full year together, but they certainly appear to have all the pieces to be a legitimate contender.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    2B Mark Ellis
    RF Andre Ethier
    CF Matt Kemp
    1B Adrian Gonzalez
    SS Hanley Ramirez
    3B Luis Cruz
    LF Jerry Hairston Jr. (Carl Crawford questionable to start season)
    C A.J. Ellis 
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    SP Clayton Kershaw
    SP Josh Beckett
    SP Chris Capuano
    SP Aaron Harang
    SP Ted Lilly
    CP Brandon League 

9. Baltimore Orioles (Previous: 8)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The surprise team of 2012, the Baltimore Orioles have the young core to build off of the success they enjoyed last season. A full season of Manny Machado and perhaps Dylan Bundy will have as big an impact as anyone they add this offseason.

    The starting rotation was a revolving door last season, and while they eventually found their starting five, it is still a largely unproven group that would benefit from the addition of a veteran arm.

    Joe Saunders made an impact down the stretch after being acquired, and they could look to add a similar player in free agency.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    RF Nick Markakis
    SS J.J. Hardy
    DH Chris Davis
    CF Adam Jones
    C Matt Wieters
    1B Mark Reynolds
    LF Nolan Reimold
    3B Manny Machado
    2B Brian Roberts

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Jason Hammel
    SP Wei-Yin Chen
    SP Chris Tillman
    SP Miguel Gonzalez
    SP Zach Britton
    CP Jim Johnson 

8. Toronto Blue Jays (Previous: 20)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Toronto Blue Jays' entire outlook for 2013 changed drastically following their blockbuster deal with the Marlins. They are now legitimate contenders in the AL East, and they may not be done dealing this offseason.

    The team is still in search of an ace-caliber starter, and while J.A. Happ is a fine option as the No. 5 starter, they could look to add a veteran to the mix for that spot as well. Either way, it's been a big offseason in Toronto already.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    SS Jose Reyes
    LF Melky Cabrera
    RF Jose Bautista
    1B Edwin Encarnacion
    CF Colby Rasmus
    3B Brett Lawrie
    DH Adam Lind
    C J.P. Arencibia
    2B Emilio Bonifacio 

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Josh Johnson
    SP Mark Buehrle

    SP Brandon Morrow
    SP Ricky Romero
    SP J.A. Happ
    CP Casey Janssen

7. Los Angeles Angels (Previous: 7)

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    Offseason Outlook

    A year after spending big to add Albert Pujols and C.J. Wilson, the Los Angeles Angels could open their wallets again this offseason as they look to replace Dan Haren and Ervin Santana in the starting rotation.

    Zack Greinke is obviously the top target, but they're likely to add a pair of starting pitchers and perhaps some back-of-the-bullpen help as well in the form of a right-handed setup man to pair with Scott Downs.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    LF Mike Trout
    SS Erick Aybar
    1B Albert Pujols
    DH Kendrys Morales
    RF Mark Trumbo
    2B Howie Kendrick
    3B Alberto Callaspo
    C Chris Iannetta
    CF Peter Bourjos

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Jered Weaver
    SP C.J. Wilson
    SP Garrett Richards
    SP Jerome Williams
    SP Brad Mills
    CP Ernesto Frieri

6. St. Louis Cardinals (Previous: 6)

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    Offseason Outlook

    Even with the departures of Kyle Lohse and Lance Berkman, the St. Louis Cardinals don't really have a major hole. Someone from the trio of Shelby Miller, Joe Kelly and Lance Lynn should be able to fill Lohse's spot, and Berkman was easily replaced by Allen Craig when he was injured last season.

    Depending on how he progresses, 21-year-old top prospect Oscar Taveras (.321 BA, 23 HR, 94 RBI at Double-A) could make a significant impact in 2013. It appears the Cardinals' biggest offseason additions will come from within.

    A left-handed reliever remains a need, though, and one they will likely address with a signing.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

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

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Adam Wainwright
    SP Chris Carpenter
    SP Jake Westbrook
    SP Lance Lynn
    SP Shelby Miller
    CP Jason Motte 

5. Oakland Athletics (Previous: 5)

26 of 30

    Offseason Outlook

    The Oakland A's will be without Brandon McCarthy and Jonny Gomes from last season's surprise contender, but they still have a terrific young core and are in a good position to contend again.

    A full season from Brett Anderson will be a major addition, after he made just six starts last season, and the team could opt to bring back Stephen Drew to fill the hole at shortstop. For the most part, it will be a matter of breakout players repeating their 2012 success if the A's are to contend again.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    CF Coco Crisp
    DH Seth Smith
    LF Yoenis Cespedes
    1B Brandon Moss
    RF Josh Reddick
    3B Josh Donaldson
    2B Scott Sizemore
    C Derek Norris
    SS Adam Rosales

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25) 

    SP Brett Anderson
    SP Jarrod Parker
    SP Tom Milone
    SP A.J. Griffin
    SP Daniel Straily
    CP Grant Balfour

4. San Francisco Giants (Previous: 4)

27 of 30

    Offseason Outlook

    The San Francisco Giants have holes in left field, center field and at second base that they will need to address this offseason.

    The team appears to have a solid chance of re-signing Angel Pagan and Marco Scutaro to fill two of those holes. Left field is where it will look to make an improvement over last season's lineup.

    Jeremy Affeldt was brought back on a three-year deal to serve as the left-handed setup man once again. Provided the team can find viable options to fill the above-mentioned needs, it should once again be near the top of the heap in the National League.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    LF Gregor Blanco
    2B Joaquin Arias
    3B Pablo Sandoval
    C Buster Posey
    RF Hunter Pence
    1B Brandon Belt
    SS Brandon Crawford
    CF Gary Brown
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Matt Cain
    SP Madison Bumgarner
    SP Tim Lincecum
    SP Ryan Vogelsong
    SP Barry Zito
    CP Brian Wilson

3. Cincinnati Reds (Previous: 3)

28 of 30

    Offseason Outlook

    The Cincinnati Reds will return essentially the same team that ran away with the NL Central crown last season. The only notable departures are third baseman Scott Rolen and left fielder Ryan Ludwick, who opted out of his mutual option.

    Todd Frazier will replace Rolen, but the left-field spot will need to be solved on the free-agent market. While Ludwick provided a powerful presence in the middle of the lineup last season, the team will likely look for someone capable of hitting atop the order after getting little on-base production out of Drew Stubbs and Zack Cozart in that role last season.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    2B Brandon Phillips
    SS Zack Cozart
    1B Joey Votto
    3B Todd Frazier
    RF Jay Bruce
    LF Chris Heisey
    C Ryan Hanigan
    CF Drew Stubbs
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

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

2. Washington Nationals (Previous: 1)

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    Offseason Outlook

    The Washington Nationals' offseason will hinge greatly on whether or not the team is able to re-sign first baseman Adam LaRoche. If they do, and they also sign a center fielder as many expect they will, slugger Michael Morse could become a very valuable trade chip.

    Aside from that, the team will also need to find a replacement for Edwin Jackson in the rotation and perhaps a left-handed reliever to replace Sean Burnett in the back of the bullpen. Besides those needs, the team looks to be in as good a position as any right now to make a run at a title.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    RF Jayson Werth
    2B Danny Espinosa
    3B Ryan Zimmerman
    1B Michael Morse
    CF Bryce Harper
    SS Ian Desmond
    LF Roger Bernadina
    C Wilson Ramos
    Pitcher

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Stephen Strasburg
    SP Gio Gonzalez
    SP Jordan Zimmermann
    SP Ross Detwiler
    SP John Lannan
    CP Drew Storen 

1. Detroit Tigers (Previous: 2)

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    Offseason Outlook

    With the signing of Torii Hunter to a two-year, $26 million deal, the Detroit Tigers jump the Nationals for the top spot in these power rankings.

    The team still needs to add a starting pitcher, with bringing back Anibal Sanchez a very good possibility, and it will need to decide who closes games this coming season. For the most part, however, the Tigers look to be in a great position to return to the World Series.

     

    2013 Projected Lineup (as of 11/25)

    CF Austin Jackson
    RF Torii Hunter
    3B Miguel Cabrera
    1B Prince Fielder
    DH Victor Martinez
    LF Andy Dirks
    SS Jhonny Peralta
    C Alex Avila
    2B Omar Infante

     

    2013 Projected Rotation (as of 11/25)

    SP Justin Verlander
    SP Doug Fister
    SP Max Scherzer
    SP Rick Porcello
    SP Drew Smyly
    CP Joaquin Benoit