MLB Power Rankings 2013: Where Every Team Stands Entering Spring Training
Pitchers and catchers have reported and MLB spring training will kick off throughout the league in the coming weeks.
Where does every team stand after their offseason? While signing big name talents and executing trades to fill roster holes may draw plenty of press attention, it won't necessarily result in huge shakeups in the power structure of the league.
Let's get right into it to find out where we've ranked your favorite team prior to the start of spring training.
1. San Francisco Giants (94-68)
The defending World Series champions are reloaded with another championship on their minds. With Tim Lincecum returning to camp with a renewed focus and the team fielding a nearly identical roster they should be right in the thick of things again in October.
2. Washington Nationals (98-64)
The Washington Nationals looked primed for a World Series run last season after finishing with the league’s best regular-season record. Stealing a Game 1 of the NLDS in St. Louis looked to be the beginning of a championship run for the Nats. Dropping two of three at home made us realize this team wasn’t ready quite yet.
3. Detroit Tigers (88-74)
Don’t sleep on the team that gets hot in late-September. That’s something we won’t forget again in 2013. Detroit closed out 2012 with an 8-2 finish and rode that momentum straight to the World Series after underperforming all season long.
4. Los Angeles Angels (89-73)
The Los Angeles Angels wrapped up 2012 needing a miracle to make the postseason. They won six of their final 10 games, but it wasn’t enough to usurp the sliding Texas Rangers. This year should be better as they have added relief in two key areas. Josh Hamilton joins an already explosive lineup while Jason Vargas will boost the club’s bottom-rotation credibility.
5. Toronto Blue Jays (73-89)
Toronto’s offseason is the lone reason for their jump to the top five. The team dealt with adversity in 2012 but battled through, for the most part. The multitude of high-profile acquisitions, headlined by R.A. Dickey, should help them in the win-loss column but we’re not buying them as top title contenders just yet.
6. Atlanta Braves (94-68)
Atlanta dropped out of the postseason following a pivotal and controversial infield fly decision that changed the dynamic of its one-game wild card game against St. Louis. The Braves got significantly better in their outfield and at the top of their lineup by adding not one, but two Uptons during the offseason.
7. Cincinnati Reds (97-65)
The Cincinnati Reds weren’t very active getting better this offseason, but they did improve their outfield by upgrading to Shin-Soo Choo. Has Cincinnati gotten better enough to make up for its disappointment last year in the postseason?
8. Los Angeles Dodgers (86-76)
A strong finish to 2012 for the Los Angeles Dodgers gives us optimism for this year. Plus, they added the best pitcher on the market by inking 29-year-old right hander Zack Greinke to a six-year deal. That should help with some of the struggles in their rotation and help a playoff push in 2013.
9. St. Louis Cardinals (88-74)
St. Louis didn’t start clicking on all cylinders until the postseason in 2012, but that’s when it counts. We see them performing similarly in 2013, despite losing some contributors from last season’s campaign.
10. Baltimore Orioles (93-69)
The Baltimore Orioles didn’t have enough firepower offensively to outduel the New York Yankees in the ALDS. They failed to score more than two runs four times and scoring three runs only once. That’s why the team’s lack of activity this offseason surprises us.
11. Oakland Athletics (94-68)
Oakland surprised in 2012 but fell short in the postseason after losing Game 5 at home to the eventual American League champs. This off-season’s signing of international Hiroyuki Nakajima fills an immediate need for the A’s and is another solid move towards making the team contenders.
12. Philadelphia Phillies (81-81)
To say that 2012 was a disappointment for the Philadelphia Phillies would be a massive understatement. We’ve tempered expectations for Philadelphia this season, but they certainly have the talent around their roster to be a pleasant surprise.
13. New York Yankees (95-67)
The uncertainty surrounding Alex Rodriguez amid a recent scandal coupled with the new-look Blue Jays may make 2013 a difficult endeavor for the Bronx Bombers. They’ll still be in contention, but we’re not sure if this team has the fortitude to make a deep playoff run this year.
14. Kansas City Royals (72-90)
The Kansas City Royals have revamped their pitching staff and could finally make a run at the AL Central with a lineup full of promising young talent.
15. Tampa Bay Rays (90-72)
Not making the playoffs in 2012 wasn’t the end of the world for the Tampa Bay Rays. But, the lack of activity this offseason may be the beginning of a decline in St. Petersburg. The Rays said goodbye to long-time fixtures B.J. Upton and James Shields.
16. Pittsburgh Pirates (79-83)
The Pittsburgh Pirates started out hot, posting a 63-47 record through Aug. 8. But that fire quickly died after the All-Star break along with the Pirates playoff hopes. We think they’ll be in contention again this season, but we’re not sure if they can sustain for the full 162-game campaign once again.
17. Arizona Diamondbacks (81-81)
Martin Prado will be solace for Arizona Diamondbacks fans in 2013. The All-Star infielder should be able to help them forget about losing Justin Upton while keeping Arizona competitive in the strong NL West Division.
18. Chicago White Sox (85-77)
The AL Central isn’t going to get any easier and the Chicago White Sox are going to need to need to be more consistent, especially in the first half of the season in order to keep pace. They were right in the mix of things in 2012, and should be in 2013, but we’re not sure they have what it takes over the course of a 162-game season.
19. Milwaukee Brewers (83-79)
Milwaukee didn’t suffer a huge drop off after losing Prince Fielder to the Detroit Tigers, but they dropped two spots in the NL Central and failed to miss the postseason. Their offseason bullpen additions should help the team overall but they might have enough firepower to unseat St. Louis and Cincinnati.
20. Texas Rangers (93-69)
This is probably the biggest surprises of these rankings, and there were probably a few for you. Mike Napoli is gone to Boston and an aging Lance Berkman will attempt to fill the team’s offensive void created when Josh Hamilton left for the Angels.
21. Cleveland Indians
The Tribe has uncharacteristically made a series of moves this offseason that could help with their second-half struggles. Sustained success has certainly eluded a Cleveland team that has come out of the gate hot in each of the past two seasons but failed to make the playoffs.
22. Boston Red Sox (69-93)
The new-look Boston Red Sox may turn some heads or may fall flat on their faces. We’ll hold off judgment until we see if their newcomers have what it takes to restore the glory back to Beantown.
23. San Diego Padres (76-86)
Another team who hasn’t made waves this offseason, the San Diego Padres could see a boost in their performance after another season if consistency helps them come together as a team.
24. New York Mets (74-88)
New York’s other team lost its ace from a season ago but has made some under-the-radar moves and will transition some young talent to bigger roles in 2013. Could they be better? Maybe, but we’ll wait until we see it happen.
25. Seattle Mariners (75-87)
Seattle was the worst team in a very competitive AL West Division in 2012. Their inking of Felix Hernandez to a multiple-season deal is key to the team building on their moderately successful performance. Are they ready to take a jump in their division? We don’t think so.
26. Minnesota Twins (66-96)
The once-promising Minnesota Twins are looking more and more like perennial bottom dwellers in the AL Central. Cleveland, Kansas City, Chicago and Detroit are all on the upswing, we can’t say the same for the Twins.
27. Chicago Cubs (61-101)
Newly acquired starter Edwin Jackson should help win a couple games but this team is far from being competitive in the top-heavy NL Central Division.
28. Houston Astros (55-107)
It’s hard not to put the Houston Astros in dead last given their awful performance last season. We think that the chances of them being that atrocious again in 2013 are pretty bad. Carlos Pena is no savior but he should add a little oomph into a lackluster batting order.
29. Miami Marlins (69-93)
This team is an absolute mess as the complete overhaul has left them yearning to get their fans back into their beautiful new ballpark.
30. Colorado Rockies (64-98)
For some reason the 64-win Colorado Rockies thought they should stand pat with the same roster from 2012. It doesn’t make much sense to us, at all.
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