MLB Power Rankings: Where All 30 Teams Stand Entering 2016

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 31, 2015

MLB Power Rankings: Where All 30 Teams Stand Entering 2016

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    Eric Risberg/Associated Press

    The new year begins Friday, but we are still a couple months away from the start of the 2016 MLB season.

    With a number of impact players still sitting in free agency, there will be plenty more action between now and that magical day when pitchers and catchers report to spring training.

    For now, though, it's time for an updated look at where all 30 teams stand.

    These rankings were last updated on Dec. 10, so any transactions that have taken place between then and now were factored into the changes you'll see in the following rankings.

    As with all offseason power rankings, these are not necessarily meant to be a prediction for the year ahead. Instead, they are a look at how teams would stack up with the rosters they currently have if the season were to start today.

    Just something worth keeping in mind when considering where your favorite team falls in the following rankings.


    Note: This time around we've included a projected 25-man Opening Day roster for each team. The roster projections from Roster Resource served as an invaluable starting point in this exercise, though changes were made based on my own opinions.

    In the following projected rosters, (R) indicates a player with rookie eligibility remaining, while a bolded player is a newcomer to the team.

30. Atlanta Braves (Previous: 30)

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    Mike Foltynewicz
    Mike FoltynewiczDale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Atlanta Braves have continued getting younger this winter, trading Andrelton Simmons and Shelby Miller to add more prospect talent to what has quietly become one of the deepest farm systems in the league.

    With a full-scale rebuild officially underway, expect the Braves to battle the similarly rebuilding Philadelphia Phillies to avoid a last-place finish in the NL East.

    The No. 5 starter job will be the battle to watch this spring, as Williams Perez, Mike Foltynewicz, Tyrell Jenkins and non-roster invitees Jhoulys Chacin and David Holmberg all figure to get a shot at winning the job.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Ender InciarteRHP Julio Teheran
    SS Erick AybarRHP Matt Wisler
    RF Nick MarkakisLHP Manny Banuelos
    1B Freddie FreemanRHP Bud Norris
    LF Hector Olivera (R)RHP Williams Perez
    3B Adonis GarciaBullpen
    C A.J. PierzynskiRHP Mike Foltynewicz
    2B Jace PetersonLHP Evan Rutckyj (R)
    BenchRHP Chris Withrow
    C Tyler FlowersRHP Jim Johnson
    1B/OF Nick SwisherLHP Ian Krol
    IF Gordon BeckhamRHP Arodys Vizcaino
    IF/OF Emilio BonifacioRHP Jason Grilli
    OF Michael Bourn 

29. Colorado Rockies (Previous: 28)

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    Nolan Arenado
    Nolan ArenadoCharles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    For years, the big issue for the Colorado Rockies has been their pitching staff, and this past season was no different as they ranked last in the majors with a 5.04 ERA.

    Jason Motte and Chad Qualls are solid veteran additions to the bullpen, but that's all they've done to improve the pitching staff to this point, so it's hard to see them faring much better in 2016.

    What they do have working in their favor is a trio of valuable trade chips in their starting outfielders, a budding superstar in third baseman Nolan Arenado and one of the deeper farm systems in all of baseball.

    That likely won't add up to a contender this coming season, but there is some legitimate hope for the future.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Charlie BlackmonLHP Jorge De La Rosa
    SS Jose ReyesRHP Chad Bettis
    RF Carlos GonzalezRHP Jordan Lyles
    3B Nolan ArenadoLHP Tyler Matzek
    LF Corey DickersonRHP Jon Gray (R)
    1B Ben PaulsenBullpen
    C Nick HundleyRHP Tyler Chatwood
    2B DJ LeMahieuLHP Chris Rusin
    BenchRHP Jairo Diaz (R)
    C Tom Murphy (R)RHP Chad Qualls
    1B/3B Mark ReynoldsLHP Boone Logan
    1B/OF Kyle ParkerRHP Justin Miller
    IF Daniel DescalsoRHP Jason Motte
    OF Brandon Barnes 

28. Philadelphia Phillies (Previous: 29)

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    Odubel Herrera
    Odubel HerreraBill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    As they continue forward with their rebuilding efforts, the Philadelphia Phillies have wisely targeted a number of potential rebound candidates this offseason to fill out their roster.

    Jeremy Hellickson and Charlie Morton could both build some legitimate trade value by the time the trade deadline rolls around, and the same goes for low-cost bullpen additions like Edward Mujica, James Russell and David Hernandez.

    The closer's role seems like the big question mark at this point after Ken Giles was shipped to the Houston Astros.

    Seeing how they utilize Rule 5 pick Tyler Goeddel will also be fun to watch after Odubel Herrera excelled as a Rule 5 selection last year. Goeddel hit .279/.350/.433 with 17 doubles, 10 triples, 12 home runs and 28 stolen bases in Double-A last year.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Cesar HernandezRHP Aaron Nola
    CF Odubel HerreraRHP Jeremy Hellickson
    3B Maikel FrancoRHP Charlie Morton
    1B Ryan HowardRHP Jerad Eickhoff
    RF Aaron AltherrLHP Brett Oberholtzer
    LF Cody AscheBullpen
    C Carlos RuizRHP Jeanmar Gomez
    SS Freddy GalvisLHP Daniel Stumpf (R)
    BenchRHP Dalier Hinojosa (R)
    C Cameron RuppRHP Edward Mujica
    1B/OF Darin RufLHP James Russell
    IF Andres BlancoRHP Luis Garcia
    OF Peter BourjosRHP David Hernandez
    OF Tyler Goeddel (R) 

27. Cincinnati Reds (Previous: 25)

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    Jay Bruce
    Jay BruceCharles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    In roughly the last calendar year, the Cincinnati Reds have traded away the likes of Johnny Cueto, Aroldis Chapman, Todd Frazier, Mike Leake, Mat Latos, Alfredo Simon, Marlon Byrd and Jonathan Broxton.

    They have their work cut out for them climbing back to relevance in the NL Central, and more trades could be on the horizon with Jay Bruce and Brandon Phillips both still candidates to be dealt.

    As for short-term needs, the team is lacking a true leadoff hitter and is also without a proven option to man left field with Scott Schebler, Yorman Rodriguez, Jake Cave and Adam Duvall all looking like potential options.

    Making a run at someone like Denard Span or Austin Jackson in free agency could kill two birds with one stone and also give them another potential trade chip come July.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    SS Zack CozartRHP Anthony DeSclafani
    1B Joey VottoRHP Raisel Iglesias
    2B Brandon PhillipsLHP Brandon Finnegan
    RF Jay BruceRHP Michael Lorenzen
    3B Eugenio SuarezLHP John Lamb (R)
    C Devin MesoracoBullpen
    LF Scott Schebler (R)RHP Carlos Contreras
    CF Billy HamiltonLHP Chris O'Grady (R)
    BenchRHP Caleb Cotham (R)
    C Tucker BarnhartRHP Blake Wood
    IF Ivan DeJesus Jr.LHP Tony Cingrani
    IF/OF Adam DuvallRHP Jumbo Diaz
    OF Jake Cave (R)RHP J.J. Hoover
    OF Yorman Rodriguez (R) 

26. Milwaukee Brewers (Previous: 27)

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    Jonathan Lucroy
    Jonathan LucroyCharles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    It's been a relatively quiet offseason for the Milwaukee Brewers to this point, though the rebuilding has continued with the trades of closer Francisco Rodriguez and first baseman Adam Lind.

    There are still some valuable trade chips on the roster, but chances are the team won't sell low on catcher Jonathan Lucroy or eat enough money to move Ryan Braun, so they could be finished dealing at this point.

    Finding a low-cost replacement at first base is the biggest remaining need, and the Brewers have already done well with the low-risk signings of Will Middlebrooks, Nick Hagadone and Eric Young Jr. on minor league deals.

    Sorting out the No. 5 starter job will be the big story of spring training, as Zach Davies, Tyler Wagner, Tyler Cravy, Jorge Lopez and Ariel Pena are all potential options. The closer's job is up for grabs as well, though Corey Knebel certainly has the stuff to thrive in that role.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    SS Jean SeguraRHP Jimmy Nelson
    C Jonathan LucroyRHP Wily Peralta
    RF Ryan BraunRHP Matt Garza
    LF Khris DavisRHP Taylor Jungmann
    CF Domingo SantanaRHP Zach Davies (R)
    3B Will MiddlebrooksBullpen
    1B Shane PetersonRHP Zach Jones (R)
    2B Scooter GennettLHP Nick Hagadone
    BenchRHP Tyler Thornburg
    C Martin MaldonadoRHP Michael Blazek
    IF Jonathan VillarRHP Jeremy Jeffress
    IF/OF Colin Walsh (R)LHP Will Smith
    OF Ramon FloresRHP Corey Knebel
    OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis 

25. Miami Marlins (Previous: 26)

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    Dee Gordon
    Dee GordonSteve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Miami Marlins have been the least active team of the offseason to this point, as their biggest moves to this point have been signing Justin Maxwell and Dylan Axelrod to minor league deals and claiming Tim Berry off waivers.

    Jose Fernandez was a hot name on the trade market during the winter meetings, but talks didn't go anywhere due to the team's exorbitant asking price. All signs point to him donning a Marlins uniform once again in 2016.

    Finding a solid No. 2 starter to bolster the starting rotation ranks as their top remaining need, while the team is also continuing to work toward an extension with second baseman Dee Gordon, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Dee GordonRHP Jose Fernandez
    LF Christian YelichRHP Jarred Cosart
    RF Giancarlo StantonRHP Tom Koehler
    1B Justin BourLHP Adam Conley
    CF Marcell OzunaRHP David Phelps
    3B Martin PradoBullpen
    C J.T. RealmutoRHP Kendry Flores (R)
    SS Adeiny HechavarriaLHP Brad Hand
    BenchRHP Kyle Barraclough (R)
    C Jeff MathisRHP Bryan Morris
    1B/OF Tommy MedicaLHP Mike Dunn
    IF Miguel RojasRHP Carter Capps
    IF/OF Derek DietrichRHP A.J. Ramos
    OF Ichiro Suzuki 

24. Baltimore Orioles (Previous: 23)

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    Hyun-soo Kim
    Hyun-soo KimKoji Watanabe/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    The losses still far outweigh the gains for the Baltimore Orioles so far this offseason, as they did well to re-sign setup man Darren O'Day but still stand to lose slugger Chris Davis and starter Wei-Yin Chen as things currently stand.

    Mark Trumbo at least gives them a power bat to take over at first base albeit on a lesser scale, while the signing of Korean outfielder Hyun-soo Kim should also help the offense as he was a career .318/.406/.488 hitter in 10 seasons for the Doosan Bears.

    The starting rotation on the other hand has yet to find anything close to a viable replacement for what was their best starter in Chen. Even with him in the mix last year the team ranked 25th in the league with a 4.53 starters' ERA.

    Top prospect Dylan Bundy, who has dealt with one injury setback after another, is now out of minor league options so he'll likely crack the Opening Day roster in some capacity.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    LF Hyun-soo Kim (R)RHP Chris Tillman
    3B Manny MachadoRHP Ubaldo Jimenez
    CF Adam JonesRHP Miguel Gonzalez
    C Matt WietersRHP Kevin Gausman
    1B Mark TrumboRHP Vance Worley
    2B Jonathan SchoopBullpen
    SS J.J. HardyRHP Dylan Bundy (R)
    DH Jimmy ParedesRHP Chaz Roe
    RF Nolan ReimoldRHP Mychal Givens (R)
    BenchLHP Brian Matusz
    C Caleb JosephRHP Brad Brach
    IF/OF Ryan FlahertyRHP Darren O'Day
    OF L.J. HoesLHP Zach Britton
    OF Joey Rickard (R) 

23. San Diego Padres (Previous: 24)

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    Brandon Maurer
    Brandon MaurerMark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    After going all-in last offseason in an effort to return to the postseason, the San Diego Padres have taken a step back this winter. Tyson Ross, Andrew Cashner and James Shields all remain on the trade block, while Craig Kimbrel and Joaquin Benoit have already been dealt.

    In fact, the bullpen as a whole has been completely overhauled. A pair of Rule 5 picks in Luis Perdomo and Josh Martin both have a chance to aid the relief corps, but it's incumbent Brandon Maurer who looks like the front-runner to take over in the ninth inning.

    As it stands the team is still in search of an upgrade at shortstop, and they've recently been linked to veteran Alexei Ramirez, according to Bruce Levine of CBS Chicago. They could also look to add another outfield bat to the mix.

    If they don't add an outfielder, keep an eye on another Rule 5 in Jabari Blash, who posted a .946 OPS and slugged 32 home runs between Double-A and Triple-A last season.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Cory SpangenbergRHP Tyson Ross
    3B Yangervis SolarteRHP James Shields
    1B Wil MyersRHP Andrew Cashner
    RF Matt KempLHP Robbie Erlin
    C Derek NorrisRHP Brandon Morrow
    LF Jabari Blash (R)Bullpen
    CF Melvin Upton Jr.RHP Luis Perdomo (R)
    SS Alexi AmaristaLHP Buddy Baumann (R)
    BenchRHP Josh Martin (R)
    C Christian BethancourtRHP Nick Vincent
    1B Brett WallaceRHP Kevin Quackenbush
    IF Jose PirelaLHP Drew Pomeranz
    OF Jon JayRHP Brandon Maurer
    OF Rymer Liriano (R) 

22. Tampa Bay Rays (Previous: 21)

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    Jake Odorizzi
    Jake OdorizziBill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    As usual, the small-market Tampa Bay Rays have stuck to a series of under-the-radar moves in their efforts to improve the roster.

    A six-player trade with the Seattle Mariners built around starter Nate Karns landed them a trio of potentially key contributors, while a trade with the Houston Astros netted them catcher Hank Conger, who could push for the primary backstop gig.

    At this point the question is once again if the team will have enough offensive firepower to back what could be one of the better starting rotations in all of baseball.

    Trading another starter is still a possibility, though, and the Los Angeles Dodgers have shown considerable interest in Jake Odorizzi, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Kevin KiermaierRHP Chris Archer
    RF Steven SouzaRHP Jake Odorizzi
    3B Evan LongoriaLHP Drew Smyly
    1B James LoneyRHP Erasmo Ramirez
    2B Logan ForsytheLHP Matt Moore
    DH Logan MorrisonBullpen
    LF Desmond JenningsLHP Enny Romero (R)
    C Curt CasaliRHP Steve Geltz
    SS Brad MillerLHP Xavier Cedeno
    BenchRHP Danny Farquhar
    C Hank CongerRHP Alex Colome
    IF Tim BeckhamLHP Jake McGee
    OF Brandon GuyerRHP Brad Boxberger
    OF Mikie Mahtook (R) 

21. Chicago White Sox (Previous: 22)

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    Tyler Saladino
    Tyler SaladinoDennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Chicago White Sox have already added a pair of potential impact bats to their lineup this offseason with trades to acquire third baseman Todd Frazier and second baseman Brett Lawrie, and they may not be finished overhauling the offense.

    A significant outfield addition could very well still be in the team's future, according to Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times.

    After ranking last in the American League and 28th in baseball with 3.84 runs per game, upgrading the offense was the clear glaring need, and adding one more big bat would be the cherry on top of a successful offseason of doing just that.

    Beyond that, they'll need to decide if they're comfortable with Tyler Saladino as the primary shortstop and Erik Johnson as the No. 5 starter, or more depth may be necessary as well.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Adam EatonLHP Chris Sale
    LF Melky CabreraLHP Jose Quintana
    1B Jose AbreuLHP Carlos Rodon
    3B Todd FrazierLHP John Danks
    DH Adam LaRocheRHP Erik Johnson
    2B Brett LawrieBullpen
    RF Avisail GarciaRHP Jacob Turner
    C Dioner NavarroLHP Dan Jennings
    SS Tyler SaladinoRHP Jake Petricka
    BenchRHP Zach Putnam
    C Alex AvilaLHP Zach Duke
    IF Carlos SanchezRHP Nate Jones
    IF/OF Mike OltRHP David Robertson
    OF J.B. Shuck 

20. Minnesota Twins (Previous: 20)

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    Byung-ho Park
    Byung-ho ParkToru Takahashi/Associated Press

    Team Outlook

    The Minnesota Twins arrived as potential contenders this past season well ahead of schedule, but their record was a bit deceiving as they actually played below .500 after June 1 (53-60) following an unsustainable 30-19 start to the season.

    That being said, this remains a team on the rise, and the additions of catcher John Ryan Murphy and Korean slugger Byung-ho Park to the lineup, as well as a healthy season from Byron Buxton, could make them a dangerous team offensively.

    Whether they have the starting pitching to legitimately contend is another question entirely, and chances are there won't be any significant additions on that side of things after the team spent big on the trio of Ricky Nolasco, Ervin Santana and Phil Hughes the past two offseasons.

    Finding a solid left-handed reliever looks like the biggest item remaining on their to-do list, though Fernando Abad will have a chance to win that job on a minor league deal.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Byron Buxton (R)RHP Kyle Gibson
    2B Brian DozierRHP Ervin Santana
    1B Joe MauerRHP Phil Hughes
    LF Miguel SanoLHP Tommy Milone
    3B Trevor PlouffeRHP Tyler Duffey
    RF Eddie RosarioBullpen
    DH Byung-ho Park (R)RHP Ricky Nolasco
    C John Ryan MurphyRHP Michael Tonkin
    SS Eduardo EscobarRHP Casey Fien
    BenchLHP Fernando Abad
    C Kurt SuzukiRHP Trevor May
    IF/OF Eduardo NunezRHP Kevin Jepsen
    IF/OF Danny SantanaLHP Glen Perkins
    OF Oswaldo Arcia 

19. Oakland Athletics (Previous: 19)

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    Sean Doolittle
    Sean DoolittleJerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Oakland Athletics posted a dismal 19-35 record in one-run games last season, and a bullpen that ranked 28th in the league with a 4.63 ERA and converted just 28-of-53 save chances was a big reason why.

    It's no surprise then that overhauling the bullpen has been the major focus of the offseason, with Ryan Madson, Liam Hendriks, John Axford and Marc Rzepczynski all added to the bullpen. Those four newcomers, alongside a healthy Sean Doolittle, could make the relief corps a strength once again.

    Meanwhile, Rich Hill ranks as one of the feel-good stories of the offseason, as the 35-year-old turned a strong finish to the 2015 season (4 GS, 2-1, 1.55 ERA) into a one-year, $6 million contract.

    He'll be locked into a rotation spot, but the final two spots on the staff look to be up for grabs, and left-handers Sean Nolin and Felix Doubront being out of options complicates things a bit.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Billy BurnsRHP Sonny Gray
    2B Jed LowrieRHP Jesse Hahn
    RF Josh ReddickLHP Rich Hill
    3B Danny ValenciaRHP Chris Bassitt
    C Stephen VogtRHP Kendall Graveman
    DH Billy ButlerBullpen
    1B Yonder AlonsoLHP Sean Nolin
    OF Coco CrispRHP Fernando Rodriguez
    SS Marcus SemienLHP Marc Rzepczynski
    BenchRHP John Axford
    C Josh PhegleyRHP Liam Hendriks
    1B/OF Mark CanhaRHP Ryan Madson
    IF Eric SogardLHP Sean Doolittle
    OF Sam Fuld 

18. Los Angeles Angels (Previous: 17)

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    C.J. Cron
    C.J. CronJayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    Looking at the Los Angeles Angels' projected lineup as it currently stands, it's legitimately hard to believe this is the same team that led the majors in scoring during the 2014 season.

    With Albert Pujols expected to miss time following foot surgery, there is a clear lack of protection for superstar Mike Trout. Are C.J. Cron or Daniel Nava really going to convince opposing pitchers to throw him anything close to a strike?

    Yunel Escobar was a nice addition to replace David Freese at the hot corner, but the lineup is still too right-handed and adding a power bat in left field seems like a must if they hope to turn things around at the plate.

    Deciding on who cracks the five-man rotation will also be a big decision, as the team has seven legitimate rotation optionseight if Tyler Skaggs is ready to go by Opening Day. Trading a starter is a possibility, but don't be surprised if C.J. Wilson or Hector Santiago return to relief roles after pitching in the bullpen in the past.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    3B Yunel EscobarRHP Garrett Richards
    RF Kole CalhounRHP Jered Weaver
    CF Mike TroutLHP Hector Santiago
    1B C.J. CronLHP Andrew Heaney
    LF Daniel NavaRHP Matt Shoemaker
    SS Andrelton SimmonsBullpen
    C Carlos PerezLHP C.J. Wilson
    DH Craig GentryRHP Deolis Guerra (R)
    2B Johnny GiavotellaRHP Cam Bedrosian
    BenchLHP Jose Alvarez
    C Geovany SotoRHP Fernando Salas
    1B Ji-Man Choi (R)RHP Joe Smith
    IF/OF Cliff PenningtonRHP Huston Street
    OF Todd Cunningham 

17. Cleveland Indians (Previous: 18)

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    Abraham Almonte
    Abraham AlmonteDavid Richard-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Cleveland Indians have the starting pitching to not only contend for a playoff spot, but to be a seriously dangerous team in October if they do in fact get that far.

    However, they have lacked the offensive punch to back that terrific staff the past few seasons, and to date they are still searching for that impact bat that could be a true difference-maker for the offense.

    Mike Napoli and Rajai Davis were nice low-cost additions, but with Michael Brantly expected to begin the season on the disabled list following shoulder surgery, scoring runs could again be an issue.

    The team will also need to decide if they are comfortable opening the season with Abraham Almonte as the primary center fielder. He impressed with a .776 OPS in 51 games for the team last season, but he's also a career .244/.297/.378 hitter.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    LF Rajai DavisRHP Corey Kluber
    SS Francisco LindorRHP Carlos Carrasco
    2B Jason KipnisRHP Danny Salazar
    DH Carlos SantanaRHP Trevor Bauer
    1B Mike NapoliRHP Josh Tomlin
    C Yan GomesBullpen
    RF Lonnie ChisenhallRHP Jeff Manship
    3B Giovanny UrshelaLHP Joe Thatcher
    CF Abraham AlmonteRHP Dan Otero
    BenchLHP Kyle Crockett
    C Roberto PerezRHP Zach McAllister
    IF Jose RamirezRHP Bryan Shaw
    OF Joey ButlerRHP Cody Allen
    OF Collin Cowgill 

16. Seattle Mariners (Previous: 16)

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    Hisashi Iwakuma
    Hisashi IwakumaJoe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    With 11 newcomers on the projected roster below, no team has been busier this offseason than the Seattle Mariners under the guidance of new general manager Jerry Dipoto.

    After finishing one win away from the postseason in 2014, the team took a big step back this past season amid lofty expectations, but there is still enough talent on the roster for them to make some serious noise in the AL West.

    With Hisashi Iwakuma re-signed and both Wade Miley and Nate Karns acquired via trade, the team suddenly has terrific starting pitching depth. Karns will have to battle with Mike Montgomery and James Paxton for the final rotation spot, despite going 7-5 with a 3.67 ERA and 1.279 WHIP in 147 innings last season.

    The overhauled bullpen could be the biggest difference-maker, though, after the team ranked 25th in the league with a 4.15 ERA last season.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    LF Nori AokiRHP Felix Hernandez
    SS Ketel MarteRHP Hisashi Iwakuma
    2B Robinson CanoRHP Taijuan Walker
    DH Nelson CruzLHP Wade Miley
    3B Kyle SeagerRHP Nate Karns
    1B Adam LindBullpen
    RF Seth SmithLHP Mike Montgomery
    C Chris IannettaRHP Evan Scribner
    CF Leonys MartinRHP Justin De Fratus
    BenchRHP Tony Zych (R)
    C Steve ClevengerLHP Charlie Furbush
    1B Jesus MonteroRHP Joaquin Benoit
    IF/OF Shawn O'Malley (R)RHP Steve Cishek
    OF Franklin Gutierrez 

15. Arizona Diamondbacks (Previous: 15)

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    Silvino Bracho
    Silvino BrachoChris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Arizona Diamondbacks entered the offseason with a terrific offensive core in place but needing a significant upgrade to the top of the starting rotation if they hoped to contend in the NL West.

    Consider it upgraded after the team signed Zack Greinke to a six-year, $206.5 million deal and then paid a steep price to acquired Shelby Miller from the Atlanta Braves.

    Those have been the only notable additions to this point, but the team may not be finished as they were recently linked to second baseman Howie Kendrick, according to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic.

    Outside of another offensive piece, the team could also look for a proven setup arm in the bullpen. That being said, keep an eye on hard-throwing Silvino Bracho to emerge in that role. The 23-year-old had a 1.46 ERA and 12.4 K/9 in 13 big league appearances last season and he's dominated every step of the way in the minors.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF A.J. PollockRHP Zack Greinke
    2B Chris OwingsRHP Shelby Miller
    1B Paul GoldschmidtLHP Patrick Corbin
    LF David PeraltaRHP Rubby De La Rosa
    C Welington CastilloLHP Robbie Ray
    RF Yasmany TomasBullpen
    3B Jake LambRHP Josh Collmenter
    SS Nick AhmedLHP Matt Reynolds
    BenchRHP Silvino Bracho (R)
    C Tuffy GosewischRHP Daniel Hudson
    C/OF Chris HerrmannLHP Andrew Chafin
    IF Aaron HillRHP Randall Delgado
    IF/OF Phil GosselinRHP Brad Ziegler
    OF Socrates Brito (R) 

14. Kansas City Royals (Previous: 13)

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    Jarrod Dyson
    Jarrod DysonKen Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The low-key offseason continues for the reigning World Series champions, as the addition of Joakim Soria to replace Ryan Madson in the bullpen has been their only significant move so far this winter.

    As is stands they still need to add at least one corner outfielder, more starting pitching depth and a proven left-hander for the bullpen to replace Franklin Morales.

    In fact, the starting rotation looks like a legitimate weakness at this point compared to AL Central foes like the Cleveland Indians, Chicago White Sox and Detroit Tigers.

    The Royals' recent run of success has been largely a result of defense, relief pitching and baserunning, and those three areas remain a strength. However, they still have work to do this offseason if they hope to have any chance of defending their title.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    SS Alcides EscobarRHP Yordano Ventura
    3B Mike MoustakasRHP Edinson Volquez
    CF Lorenzo CainLHP Danny Duffy
    1B Eric HosmerRHP Chris Young
    DH Kendrys MoralesRHP Kris Medlen
    C Salvador PerezBullpen
    RF Jose Martinez (R)RHP Dillon Gee
    2B Omar InfanteRHP Louis Coleman
    LF Jarrod DysonLHP Scott Alexander (R)
    BenchRHP Luke Hochevar
    C Tony CruzRHP Kelvin Herrera
    IF Christian ColonRHP Joakim Soria
    OF Reymond Fuentes (R)RHP Wade Davis
    OF Paulo Orlando 

13. New York Mets (Previous: 12)

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    David Wright
    David WrightBrett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The New York Mets have one of the most dynamic starting rotations in all of baseball, that much is undeniable, and it has a chance to be be even better once Zack Wheeler returns from Tommy John surgery.

    However, the offense once again looks like it could be an issue.

    Replacing Daniel Murphy and Wilmer Flores with Neil Walker and Asdrubal Cabrera is essentially a wash from an offensive production standpoint. The leaves the team right back where they were prior to acquiring Yoenis Cespedes last season, when they struggled mightily to score runs at times.

    A healthy season from David Wright and a breakout performance from Michael Conforto would go a long way, but banking on that rather than spending to add the impact bat they need is a ridiculous approach from an ownership group that is more wrapped up in their own finances than the on-field product.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    RF Curtis GrandersonRHP Jacob deGrom
    LF Michael ConfortoRHP Matt Harvey
    3B David WrightRHP Noah Syndergaard
    1B Lucas DudaLHP Steven Matz
    2B Neil WalkerRHP Bartolo Colon
    C Travis d'ArnaudBullpen
    SS Asdrubal CabreraLHP Sean Gilmartin
    CF Juan LagaresRHP Erik Goeddel
    BenchRHP Carlos Torres
    C Kevin PlaweckiLHP Jerry Blevins
    IF Wilmer FloresRHP Hansel Robles
    IF Ruben TejadaRHP Addison Reed
    IF/OF Eric CampbellRHP Jeurys Familia
    OF Alejandro De Aza 

12. Washington Nationals (Previous: 14)

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    Joe Ross
    Joe RossBrad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    No team was a bigger disappointment in 2015 than the Washington Nationals, but there is still a ton of talent on their roster. With a relatively quiet offseason from the New York Mets to this point, they should have a real chance of contending for the NL East title once again.

    Losing Jordan Zimmermann is a blow to the rotation, but Joe Ross impressed as a rookie and Tanner Roark is more than capable of holding down the No. 5 starter job.

    Meanwhile, the bullpen has been reworked with the additions of Yusmeiro Petit, Trevor Gott, Oliver Perez and Shawn Kelley, though there is still the matter of Drew Storen and Jonathan Papelbon both being capable closer options and both wanting that job.

    Things had been relatively quiet on the position player side of things before Daniel Murphy and Stephen Drew were added to shore up the middle infield situation. That will allow the team to return top prospect Trea Tuner to the minors to start the season, but he's still the long-term answer at shortstop.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    3B Anthony RendonRHP Max Scherzer
    2B Daniel MurphyRHP Stephen Strasburg
    RF Bryce HarperLHP Gio Gonzalez
    1B Ryan ZimmermanRHP Joe Ross
    LF Jayson WerthRHP Tanner Roark
    SS Danny EspinosaBullpen
    C Wilson RamosRHP Yusmeiro Petit
    CF Michael TaylorLHP Felipe Rivero
    BenchRHP Trevor Gott
    C Jose LobatonLHP Oliver Perez
    1B/OF Tyler MooreRHP Shawn Kelley
    1B/OF Clint RobinsonRHP Drew Storen
    IF Stephen DrewRHP Jonathan Papelbon
    OF Matt den Dekker 

11. Los Angeles Dodgers (Previous: 8)

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    Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    After losing Zack Greinke and having their deal with Hisashi Iwakuma fall through due to issues that arose during his physical, the Los Angeles Dodgers have finally made an addition to their starting rotation.

    Scott Kazmir inked a three-year, $48 million deal on Wednesday, which means that at least for now the team is projected to have five left-handed starters in their rotation.

    That could soon change, though, as the team is viewed as the front-runner to sign Japanese standout Kenta Maeda, per Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.

    Meanwhile, the team also has an outfield logjam that needs to be sorted out once again, as really none of the three spots has a clear-cut everyday starter. Andre Ethier was the best of the bunch in 2015, Yasiel Puig still has the highest ceiling, Joc Pederson is out to prove he's the player we saw in the first half last year and Carl Crawford looks like the best leadoff option.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    LF Carl CrawfordLHP Clayton Kershaw
    SS Corey Seager (R)LHP Scott Kazmir
    3B Justin TurnerLHP Brett Anderson
    1B Adrian GonzalezLHP Alex Wood
    RF Andre EthierLHP Hyun-jin Ryu
    2B Kike HernandezBullpen
    C Yasmani GrandalRHP Mike Bolsinger
    CF Joc PedersonLHP Luis Avilan
    BenchRHP Yimi Garcia
    C A.J. EllisRHP Pedro Baez
    1B/OF Scott Van SlykeLHP J.P. Howell
    IF Chase UtleyRHP Chris Hatcher
    IF/OF Alex GuerreroRHP Kenley Jansen
    OF Yasiel Puig 

10. New York Yankees (Previous: 11)

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    Luis Severino
    Luis SeverinoAndy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    Three pitchers used exclusively as relievers topped 100 strikeouts last season, and after trading for Aroldis Chapman the New York Yankees now have all three of them at the back end of their bullpen.

    That should help shorten games for a starting rotation that remains something of a concern, and will certainly benefit guys like Luis Severino and Nathan Eovaldi, who have not exactly established themselves as workhorses to this point in their careers.

    On the offensive side of things, adding Starlin Castro gives the team a clear upgrade at second base, but it also gives them some needed versatility as he's capable of playing shortstop as well.

    Health will once again be a significant factor for the aging superstar core, but with guys like Dustin Ackley and Aaron Hicks capable of stepping into an expanded role if needed, they seem to be in a better position from a depth standpoint than in years past.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Jacoby EllsburyRHP Masahiro Tanaka
    LF Brett GardnerRHP Michael Pineda
    RF Carlos BeltranRHP Luis Severino
    1B Mark TeixeiraRHP Nathan Eovaldi
    DH Alex RodriguezLHP CC Sabathia
    C Brian McCannBullpen
    2B Starlin CastroRHP Ivan Nova
    3B Chase HeadleyRHP Nick Rumbelow (R)
    SS Didi GregoriusLHP Chasen Shreve
    BenchRHP Branden Pinder
    C Austin RomineLHP Andrew Miller
    IF Pete KozmaRHP Dellin Betances
    IF/OF Dustin AckleyLHP Aroldis Chapman
    OF Aaron Hicks 

9. Houston Astros (Previous: 9)

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    Ken Giles
    Ken GilesPat Sullivan/Associated Press

    Team Outlook

    One of the biggest reasons for the Houston Astros' dramatic turnaround this past season was a vastly improved relief corps, as they went from 30th (4.80) to sixth (3.27) in bullpen ERA.

    Despite that improvement, the team was still lacking a truly dominant closer as Luke Gregerson held his own in that role but is best served as an eighth-inning setup man.

    That changed with the addition of Ken Giles, who came at a steep price from the rebuilding Philadelphia Phillies but also came with five years of team control as he'll be a long-term piece of what the Astros are building.

    The team could still look to add another starting pitcher to the mix before the offseason is over, and it will need to decide if out-of-options Dan Straily is deserving of a roster spot, but for the most part Houston looks ready to contend once again in 2016.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    RF George SpringerLHP Dallas Keuchel
    2B Jose AltuveRHP Collin McHugh
    SS Carlos CorreaRHP Mike Fiers
    CF Carlos GomezRHP Scott Feldman
    LF Colby RasmusRHP Lance McCullers
    DH Evan GattisBullpen
    3B Luis ValbuenaRHP Dan Straily
    1B Jon SingletonRHP Josh Fields
    C Jason CastroRHP Pat Neshek
    BenchLHP Tony Sipp
    C Max StassiRHP Will Harris
    1B/OF Preston TuckerRHP Luke Gregerson
    IF Marwin GonzalezRHP Ken Giles
    OF Jake Marisnick 

8. Detroit Tigers (Previous: 7)

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    Jordan Zimmermann
    Jordan ZimmermannMark Cunningham/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    The Detroit Tigers saw their run of four straight AL Central titles come to an end last season, but their days of contending appear to be far from over after a busy offseason of reworking the roster under new general manager Al Avila.

    Jordan Zimmermann and Mike Pelfrey were added to shore up the starting rotation, and upgrading the bullpen was finally made a priority with the trio of Justin Wilson, Mark Lowe and Francisco Rodriguez added to anchor the relief corps.

    The team could still look to add an impact bat in left field, which could mean a very productive platoon of Anthony Gose and Cameron Maybin in center field. According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, they are "sitting back waiting" for Yoenis Cespedes at this point.

    Even if they decide to stand pat, they once again look to be one of the most talented teams in the American League.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Anthony GoseRHP Justin Verlander
    2B Ian KinslerRHP Jordan Zimmermann
    1B Miguel CabreraRHP Anibal Sanchez
    RF J.D. MartinezRHP Mike Pelfrey
    DH Victor MartinezLHP Daniel Norris
    LF Cameron MaybinBullpen
    3B Nick CastellanosRHP Drew VerHagen
    C James McCannLHP Blaine Hardy
    SS Jose IglesiasRHP Bruce Rondon
    BenchRHP Alex Wilson
    C Jarrod SaltalamacchiaLHP Justin Wilson
    IF Mike AvilesRHP Mark Lowe
    IF/OF Andrew RomineRHP Francisco Rodriguez
    OF Tyler Collins 

7. Boston Red Sox (Previous: 5)

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    David Price
    David PriceMaddie Meyer/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    Can three players really mean the difference between a last-place finish in the AL East and a legitimate contenders?

    While it's not quite that simple, signing David Price to front the rotation and adding Craig Kimbrel and Carson Smith to what was a shaky bullpen to say the least addresses the two huge holes that plagued the Boston Red Sox last season.

    Further progression from emerging stars like Xander Bogaerts, Mookie Betts and Eduardo Rodriguez should also help the team take a step forward.

    They are still chasing the Toronto Blue Jays at this point, but the Red Sox easily look like the second-best team in the AL East and they have a chance to be a serious contender in the American League.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    RF Mookie BettsLHP David Price
    2B Dustin PedroiaRHP Rick Porcello
    SS Xander BogaertsRHP Clay Buchholz
    DH David OrtizLHP Eduardo Rodriguez
    1B Hanley RamirezRHP Joe Kelly
    3B Pablo SandovalBullpen
    LF Rusney CastilloRHP Steven Wright
    C Blake SwihartLHP Tommy Layne
    CF Jackie Bradley Jr.RHP Junichi Tazawa
    BenchLHP Robbie Ross Jr.
    C Ryan HaniganRHP Carson Smith
    1B/3B Travis ShawRHP Koji Uehara
    IF/OF Brock HoltRHP Craig Kimbrel
    OF Chris Young 

6. St. Louis Cardinals (Previous: 3)

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    Mike Leake
    Mike LeakeJeff Roberson/Associated Press

    Team Outlook

    The St. Louis Cardinals finally made their first impact addition of the offseason when they signed Mike Leake to a five-year, $80 million deal to address the need for a starter that arose when it was announced that Lance Lynn would be out for the season.

    Now they figure to turn their attention to upgrading an offense that ranked 24th in the league with 3.99 runs per game last season.

    In particular, the team needs to find a way to add more power, as they were 25th in home runs (137) and 23rd in slugging percentage (.394).

    They've been linked to the Colorado Rockies, who have been shopping the outfield trio of Carlos Gonzalez, Charlie Blackmon and Corey Dickerson, according to Benjamin Hochman of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Such a move would presumably include Matt Adams, and mean Stephen Piscotty shifts in to become the primary first baseman.


    Projected 25-Man Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    3B Matt CarpenterRHP Adam Wainwright
    RF Stephen PiscottyRHP Michael Wacha
    LF Matt HollidayRHP Carlos Martinez
    1B Matt AdamsRHP Mike Leake
    SS Jhonny PeraltaLHP Jaime Garcia
    CF Randal GrichukBullpen
    C Yadier MolinaRHP Matt Bowman (R)
    2B Kolten WongLHP Tyler Lyon