MLB Power Rankings 2011 Weeks 4-5: Reasoning on the River About the Royals
To start the season, the Texas Rangers sat atop my first two weeks of power rankings, but Kansas city ranked in the top five. Since then in my power ranking system, they've faded along with the chat about the royal wedding.
The Lake Power Index (LPI) is a system for ranking teams based on points earned for strength of schedule, strength of division, margin of victory, winning percentage, winning streaks and division lead.
Who is No. 1 this week? Start the show to find out...
12. Baltimore Orioles: Buck Showalter's Boys Are Making a Move
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Baltimore has climbed to the .500 mark after losing eight games in a row earlier this season. Their offense was thought to be much improved, and is starting to come around.
They dealt with injuries in the starting rotation, and Brian Matusz's health will be a key for them going forward.
11. Cincinnati Reds: Ah, the Distractions of Youth in the Queen City
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Mike Leake has been in trouble with the law for theiving shirts from Macy's that he had money for.
The Reds lost first place to the Cardinals over Good Friday weekend, and Cincinnati was literally caught in the storm. Playing in St. Louis, Busch Stadium was prepared for the tornado that hit the area in week three.
The Reds were hit by the Redbirds, who are sweeping through the NL. Cincinnati is still playing .500 ball, though.
10. Tampa Bay Rays: Letting Their Light Shine Before Men in the American League
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Ben Zobrist has been on fire for Joe Maddon's team down in Tampa. Thought to be in a rebuilding stage after losing Carl Crawford and Rafael Soriano, the Rays are good.
They started off slow, but have climbed above .500 at 15-13 and are in second place to the Yankees.
Evan Longoria—who has missed every game so far this season—is set to come back to the team on Tuesday.
9. Kansas City Royals: Married to Winning
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Having lost five games in a row, the Royals took the biggest tumble in my power index. They were at .500 (12-12) going into the Thursday night game against the Cleveland Indians.
Now at 15-13 going into the Monday of week 4, the Royals are starting to right the ship. It could be bouncing up and down on the waves of a MLB season all year. Stay tuned.
8. Texas Rangers: They're Fading Without Josh Hamilton to Helm Them Hammer
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Hamilton's been out of action since early April and the Rangers have dropped out of first place in the division. They can and will get it together as the season goes along.
For now, in the rankings they've succumbed to the punishment of dropping into second place behind the Los Angeles Angels. The angels will visit Texas and get them going in the right direction.
Until then, they slide down in the LPI for week four. They were the No. 1 team in my index for the first week of the season.
7. Los Angeles Angels: Jered Weaver for President of the Pitchers in the Majors
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Weaver led the league in striking out batters last season, and he's on pace to do it again in this one. He could become the first pitcher in 100 years to start out 7-0, according to ESPN's MLB broadcast on Sunday afternoon featuring Dave Winfield.
6. St. Louis Cardinals: The Redbirds Continue to Rake in the Clutch Situations
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The cardiac Cardinals have been coming back more times than Sugar Ray Leonard lately. It's a good look for the Redbirds and their nation.
Last season was similar to a collapse. This one, St. Louis is sitting in first place without big Adam Wainwright. It was inconceivable four weeks ago—the way they started.
The ship has been righted by Lance Berkman, Matt Holliday, Colby Rasmus and raking crew after raking crew. If the bullpen can get it together, they'll go to the playoffs.
5. New York Yankees: The Bronx Bombers 2011 Are Breathing with Home Runs
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Robinson Cano has been slugging more home runs at Yankee Stadium than Babe Ruth it seems. He had four or five at home in a seven game run.
The Yankees sit in first place behind suspect starting pitching and hitting for average. Mariano Rivera has been locking hitters up with precision. Curtis Granderson is also playing well for the Yankees.
4. Florida Marlins: Nibbling Philly's Heels
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Florida is right behind Philadelphia for first place in the division. With some of the most quality wins in the Majors over the last week, the Marlins are for real in the National League this year.
They're making a big push for either first place or a wild card slot. If Josh Johnson continues to pitch like he is and their young hitters do what they do, then Florida will be there.
3. Colorado Rockies: Rolling Through the Mountains of the National League West
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The Rockies play solid defense along with their dynamic offense and outstanding pitching. They are poised to dethrone the San Francisco Giants for the division crown.
If they can knock off the Giants in the division, they'll be dethroning the defending World Series champions. If nothing else, it's something the Rockies' players can tell their grandkids about.
2. Philadelphia Phillies: One of the Best Winning Percentages in the Majors
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They were rolling along with the best winning percentage in the Majors. They lost that on Sunday night, but they're still near the top.
Only the No. 1 ranked team is above them in the LPI.
1. Cleveland Indians: Undefeated at Home Through Week 4
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Including left-hander Rafael Perez, the Indians are enjoying remarkable success as a pitching staff.
They are also hitting with Grady Sizemore, Asdrubal Cabrera, Shin-Soo Choo and company. With a 19-8 record, Cleveland has the most wins in the Majors.
This is a major story that I'll be watching and reporting on all year. Can the Tribe pull off the impossible and win their division this season?
Stay tuned my faithful readers, and tell a friend. It's time for me to tune up and out. Until next week, good living, good loving and good reading.