MLB Power Rankings: Who Is Baseball's No. 1 Team on Opening Day?

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistApril 4, 2016

MLB Power Rankings: Who Is Baseball's No. 1 Team on Opening Day?

0 of 30

    The Royals won it all in 2015, but it's a whole new season.
    The Royals won it all in 2015, but it's a whole new season.Matt Slocum/Associated Press

    The 2016 MLB season kicked off with a tripleheader of games on Sunday, and ahead of Monday's full slate of action it's time to officially unveil our Opening Day power rankings.

    All offseason we've shuffled teams around based on free-agent signings, trades, injuries, position battles and in many case a simple shift in opinion as the months went on and we moved closer to the start of the regular season.

    From here on out, we'll have actual on-field results to base these rankings on, but for now they're still largely subjective and based on how the teams stack up on paper.

    These rankings are a fluid process throughout the course of the season. Win, and you climb. Continue to win, and you'll continue to climb. It's as simple as that, yet it never fails to spark some of the best debate in the MLB community.

    So who is baseball's No. 1 team on Opening Day? Where does your favorite team fall in our first regular-season power rankings?

    Let's get things rolling.

30. Atlanta Braves

1 of 30

    The Braves are hoping for big things from Hector Olivera.
    The Braves are hoping for big things from Hector Olivera.Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Atlanta Braves are in full-blown rebuilding mode. As they look for temporary solutions to fill out the big league ranks while their impressive prospect depth develops, they have a whopping 12 newcomers on the 25-man roster.

    Shelby Miller, Andrelton Simmons and Cameron Maybin were the latest trade casualties, and the team also cut ties with Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn despite them being the two highest-paid players on the team.

    This year will be all about player evaluation ahead of the opening of the new stadium next season, making guys like Hector Olivera, Jace Peterson, Matt Wisler and Arodys Vizcaino the ones to watch as they look to cement their place in the team's long-term plans.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Ender Inciarte RHP Julio Teheran
    SS Erick Aybar RHP Bud Norris
    1B Freddie Freeman RHP Matt Wisler
    3B Adonis Garcia RHP Williams Perez
    RF Nick Markakis Bullpen
    LF Hector Olivera RHP John Gant
    C A.J. Pierzynski RHP Jose A. Ramirez
    2B Jace Peterson RHP Alexi Ogando
    Bench LHP Eric O'Flaherty
    C Tyler Flowers RHP Dan Winkler
    IF Gordon Beckham RHP Jim Johnson
    IF/OF Kelly Johnson RHP Arodys Vizcaino
    OF Jeff Francoeur RHP Jason Grilli
    OF Drew Stubbs  

29. Cincinnati Reds

2 of 30

    Alfredo Simon rejoined the Reds rotation as a late-offseason addition.
    Alfredo Simon rejoined the Reds rotation as a late-offseason addition.Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

    Team Outlook

    Already expected to have one of the youngest rotations in baseball, the Cincinnati Reds will begin the season with Homer Bailey, Anthony DeSclafani, Michael Lorenzen, John Lamb and Jon Moscot all on the disabled list.

    That led to the late-spring additions of Alfredo Simon and Dan Straily, and the team also scooped up reliever Steve Delabar after the Toronto Blue Jays cut him loose.

    The pitching staff may look like a major weakness, but the offense still has a chance to make some noise—and that's especially true if guys like Devin Mesoraco and Jay Bruce can bounce back from disappointing 2015 performances.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    SS Zack CozartRHP Raisel Iglesias
    3B Eugenio SuarezLHP Brandon Finnegan
    1B Joey VottoRHP Robert Stephenson
    2B Brandon PhillipsRHP Alfredo Simon
    RF Jay BruceBullpen
    C Devin MesoracoRHP Keyvius Sampson
    LF Adam DuvallRHP Dan Straily
    CF Billy HamiltonRHP Caleb Cotham
    BenchRHP Blake Wood
    C Tucker BarnhartRHP Ross Ohlendorf
    C/IF Jordan PachecoLHP Tony Cingrani
    IF/OF Ivan De Jesus Jr.RHP Jumbo Diaz
    OF Tyler HoltRHP J.J. Hoover
    OF Scott Schebler 

28. Philadelphia Phillies

3 of 30

    Ladies and gentleman, Phillies Opening Day starter Jeremy Hellickson.
    Ladies and gentleman, Phillies Opening Day starter Jeremy Hellickson.Elsa/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    After losing 89 games in 2014 and 99 games last year, the Philadelphia Phillies may finally be ready for an upturn in 2016, but contention is still a long way off.

    While they'll start the season with a number of short-term placeholders up and down the roster, more than a few highly regarded prospects are expected to arrive on the scene over the upcoming season, which should provide some excitement for the future if nothing else.

    Jeremy Hellickson gets the Opening Day nod on the mound, and Charlie Morton joins him in the rotation as those two will look to rebuild some value and turn themselves into viable trade chips ahead of the July deadline.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Cesar Hernandez RHP Jeremy Hellickson
    CF Odubel Herrera RHP Aaron Nola
    3B Maikel Franco RHP Charlie Morton
    1B Ryan Howard RHP Vincent Velasquez
    C Cameron Rupp RHP Jerad Eickhoff
    RF Cedric HunterBullpen
    SS Freddy Galvis LHP Brett Oberholtzer
    LF Peter Bourjos LHP Daniel Stumpf
    Bench RHP Hector Neris
    C Carlos Ruiz LHP James Russell
    1B/OF Darin Ruf RHP Jeanmar Gomez
    IF Andres Blanco RHP Dalier Hinojosa
    IF Emmanuel Burriss RHP David Hernandez
    OF Tyler Goeddel  

27. Colorado Rockies

4 of 30

    Trevor Story will have a chance to prove himself with the Jose Reyes situation still up in the air.
    Trevor Story will have a chance to prove himself with the Jose Reyes situation still up in the air.Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

    Team Outlook

    The Colorado Rockies bolstered what was the worst bullpen in baseball last year with the additions of Jake McGee, Chad Qualls and Jason Motte (who starts the year on the disabled list), but they didn't make a significant addition to the rotation.

    That said, Tyler Chatwood and Jordan Lyles both flashed the potential to be useful starters before battling through injury-plagued seasons a year ago. With those two back healthy, Jorge De La Rosa and Chad Bettis back atop the staff and Jon Gray still working his way toward reaching his potential, the pitching has a chance to be improved this year across the board.

    However, it still doesn't look anywhere near good enough for the Rockies to contend. They will have plenty of offensive firepower once again this year, though, and rookie shortstop Trevor Story will look to add another wrinkle to the lineup after hitting .340 with six home runs this spring.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Charlie Blackmon LHP Jorge De La Rosa
    SS Trevor Story RHP Chad Bettis
    RF Carlos Gonzalez RHP Tyler Chatwood
    3B Nolan Arenado RHP Jordan Lyles
    LF Gerardo Parra Bullpen
    C Nick Hundley LHP Chris Rusin
    1B Ben Paulsen RHP Christian Bergman
    2B DJ LeMahieu RHP Miguel Castro
    Bench LHP Jason Gurka
    C Tony Wolters RHP Chad Qualls
    1B/3B Mark Reynolds LHP Boone Logan
    IF Cristhian Adames RHP Justin Miller
    OF Brandon Barnes LHP Jake McGee
    OF Ryan Raburn  

26. Milwaukee Brewers

5 of 30

    With the departure of Francisco Rodriguez and the injury to Will Smith, the closer's role belongs to Jeremy Jeffress.
    With the departure of Francisco Rodriguez and the injury to Will Smith, the closer's role belongs to Jeremy Jeffress.Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    They may not have a true ace to front their staff, but the Milwaukee Brewers do have some useful starting pitching depth that should allow them to avoid the NL Central cellar and remain somewhat competitive as they continue to rebuild.

    Adam Lind, Francisco Rodriguez, Jean Segura and Khris Davis became the latest trade chips to be moved this offseason, and it wouldn't be surprising to see catcher Jonathan Lucroy follow them out the door in the year to come.

    Following the trade of K-Rod and a knee injury to left-hander Will Smith, the hard-throwing Jeremy Jeffress begins the season in the closer's role with all of one career save to his credit. Speedy Keon Broxton also emerged as the surprise winner of the starting center field job after the team acquired from the Pittsburgh Pirates for first baseman Jason Rogers.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    SS Jonathan Villar RHP Wily Peralta
    C Jonathan Lucroy RHP Jimmy Nelson
    LF Ryan Braun RHP Matt Garza
    1B Chris Carter RHP Taylor Jungmann
    RF Domingo Santana RHP Chase Anderson
    3B Aaron HillBullpen
    2B Scooter Gennett RHP Ariel Pena
    CF Keon Broxton LHP Chris Capuano
    Bench RHP Carlos Torres
    C Martin Maldonado RHP Michael Blazek
    IF Yadiel Rivera RHP Tyler Thornburg
    IF/OF Colin Walsh RHP Blaine Boyer
    OF Ramon Flores RHP Jeremy Jeffress
    OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis  

25. San Diego Padres

6 of 30

    Colin Rea won a spot in the rotation with a big spring, and he could be a potential breakout candidate.
    Colin Rea won a spot in the rotation with a big spring, and he could be a potential breakout candidate.Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The big battle for the San Diego Padres this spring came at the back of the starting rotation, where there were two spots up for grabs behind Tyson Ross, James Shields and Andrew Cashner.

    Brandon Maurer and Robbie Erlin looked like the early favorites going into camp, but it wound up being swingman-turned-starter Drew Pomeranz and prospect Colin Rea who will round out the staff to begin the season.

    This Padres team certainly enters the season with substantially less buzz than it did a year ago after a busy offseason revamping the roster, but there's still talent here, and that's especially true if Wil Myers can put together a healthy and productive season in the middle of the order.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Jon Jay RHP Tyson Ross
    2B Cory Spangenberg RHP James Shields
    RF Matt Kemp RHP Andrew Cashner
    1B Wil Myers LHP Drew Pomeranz
    C Derek Norris RHP Colin Rea
    3B Yangervis Solarte Bullpen
    SS Alexei Ramirez RHP Luis Perdomo
    LF Melvin Upton Jr. RHP Carlos Villanueva
    Bench LHP Ryan Buchter
    C Christian Bethancourt RHP Kevin Quackenbush
    1B Brett Wallace LHP Matt Thornton
    IF Adam Rosales RHP Brandon Maurer
    OF Jabari Blash RHP Fernando Rodney
    OF Travis Jankowski  

24. Baltimore Orioles

7 of 30

    With Kevin Gausman headed for the disabled list and Miguel Gonzalez released, rotation spots have opened up for Mike Wright (pictured) and Tyler Wilson to start the year.
    With Kevin Gausman headed for the disabled list and Miguel Gonzalez released, rotation spots have opened up for Mike Wright (pictured) and Tyler Wilson to start the year.Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    It was an odd end to spring training for the Baltimore Orioles, between trying to decide what to do with Korean outfielder Hyun Soo Kim and the somewhat surprising release of Miguel Gonzalez, who agreed to a $5.1 million salary in arbitration.

    With Gonzalez gone and Kevin Gausman opening the season on the disabled list with shoulder tendinitis, young right-handers Mike Wright and Tyler Wilson will both begin the year in the rotation and be stuck once Gausman returns.

    Adding Pedro Alvarez and Mark Trumbo in the offseason should mean a ton of home runs for an Orioles team that already ranked third in the league in that category a year ago, but it's hard to see them making a legitimate push at contending in the AL East with that rotation.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    3B Manny Machado RHP Chris Tillman
    CF Adam Jones RHP Yovani Gallardo
    1B Chris Davis RHP Ubaldo Jimenez
    RF Mark Trumbo RHP Mike Wright
    C Matt Wieters RHP Tyler Wilson
    DH Pedro AlvarezBullpen
    SS J.J. Hardy RHP Vance Worley
    2B Jonathan Schoop LHP T.J. McFarland
    LF Joey Rickard RHP Dylan Bundy
    Bench RHP Mychal Givens
    C Caleb Joseph RHP Brad Brach
    IF/OF Ryan Flaherty RHP Darren O'Day
    OF Hyun Soo Kim LHP Zach Britton
    OF Nolan Reimold  

23. Los Angeles Angels

8 of 30

    A platoon of Daniel Nava (pictured) and Craig Gentry in left field could surprise people.
    A platoon of Daniel Nava (pictured) and Craig Gentry in left field could surprise people.Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    Perhaps this is a harsh ranking for a team that has the best player in baseball in Mike Trout anchoring its lineup and a starting rotation that appears to have some solid depth, despite veteran C.J. Wilson beginning the season on the disabled list.

    However, outside of Trout, the lineup looks like one of the worst in the American League, and that's a scary proposition for a team that struggled to score runs a year ago. The Angels saw their production dip from an MLB-best 4.77 runs per game in 2014 to just 4.08 to rank 20th in the league.

    Jered Weaver is another year older, Matt Shoemaker had a rough sophomore season and Hector Santiago posted a 5.47 ERA in the second half after making the All-Star team. So while the rotation looks deep, it's not necessarily in a position to carry the team.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    3B Yunel Escobar RHP Garrett Richards
    LF Daniel Nava LHP Andrew Heaney
    CF Mike Trout LHP Hector Santiago
    DH Albert Pujols RHP Matt Shoemaker
    RF Kole Calhoun RHP Jered Weaver
    1B C.J. Cron Bullpen
    SS Andrelton Simmons RHP Cory Rasmus
    C Carlos Perez RHP Cam Bedrosian
    2B Johnny Giavotella RHP Mike Morin
    Bench LHP Jose Alvarez
    C Geovany Soto RHP Fernando Salas
    1B/OF Ji-Man Choi RHP Joe Smith
    IF Cliff Pennington RHP Huston Street
    OF Craig Gentry 

22. Oakland Athletics

9 of 30

    Khris Davis provides some added punch to the Oakland lineup.
    Khris Davis provides some added punch to the Oakland lineup.Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The focus of the offseason for the Oakland Athletics was improving the relief corps, and rightfully so after they posted an AL-worst 4.64 bullpen ERA en route to converting 28 of 53 save chances and going 19-35 in one-run games.

    That wasn't the only area they added pieces, as Khris Davis, Jed Lowrie and Yonder Alonso join the starting lineup along with a full season of Danny Valencia, who racked up 37 RBI in 47 games after being acquired off waivers from the Toronto Blue Jays last year.

    So while the offense and bullpen look to be improved, the starting rotation behind ace Sonny Gray is now the big question mark. Free-agent signing Rich Hill and young right-handers Chris Bassitt and Kendall Graveman will look to make a difference.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Billy Burns RHP Sonny Gray
    2B Jed Lowrie LHP Rich Hill
    RF Josh Reddick RHP Chris Bassitt
    3B Danny Valencia RHP Kendall Graveman
    C Stephen Vogt LHP Felix Doubront
    LF Khris DavisBullpen
    DH Billy Butler RHP Ryan Dull
    1B Yonder Alonso RHP Fernando Rodriguez
    SS Marcus Semien LHP Marc Rzepczynski
    Bench RHP John Axford
    C Josh Phegley RHP Liam Hendriks
    1B/OF Mark Canha RHP Ryan Madson
    IF/OF Chris Coghlan LHP Sean Doolittle
    OF Coco Crisp 

21. Miami Marlins

10 of 30

    Young left-hander Adam Conley could be an X-factor for the Marlins this season.
    Young left-hander Adam Conley could be an X-factor for the Marlins this season.Brynn Anderson/Associated Press

    Team Outlook

    The Miami Marlins began the 2015 season with legitimate hopes of contending in the NL East, but instead finished a distant third in the standings at 71-91 amid a season of turmoil and injuries.

    The additions of Don Mattingly as manager and Barry Bonds as hitting coach brought stability and excitement to the coaching staff, and then the team spent big to add a much-needed quality second starter in Wei-Yin Chen.

    Marcell Ozuna, Martin Prado and Jarred Cosart are among the players capable of much more than they provided a year ago, while up-and-coming talents like catcher J.T. Realmuto and left-hander Adam Conley are also capable of making an impact.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Dee Gordon LHP Wei-Yin Chen
    CF Marcell Ozuna RHP Jose Fernandez
    LF Christian Yelich LHP Adam Conley
    RF Giancarlo Stanton RHP Tom Koehler
    3B Martin Prado RHP Jarred Cosart
    1B Justin Bour Bullpen
    C J.T. Realmuto RHP Edwin Jackson
    SS Adeiny Hechavarria RHP David Phelps
    Bench LHP Chris Narveson
    C Jeff Mathis RHP Dustin McGowan
    1B/3B Chris Johnson LHP Craig Breslow
    IF Miguel Rojas RHP Bryan Morris
    IF/OF Derek Dietrich RHP A.J. Ramos
    OF Ichiro Suzuki 

20. Chicago White Sox

11 of 30

    Carlos Rodon could be a breakout star in 2016.
    Carlos Rodon could be a breakout star in 2016.Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    According to FanGraphs, the Chicago White Sox were the worst defensive team in the majors last year. Adding the likes of Todd Frazier, Brett Lawrie, Jimmy Rollins and Austin Jackson to the mix should go a long way in improving that aspect of the game.

    Lawrie and Frazier also represent significant offensive upgrades at second and third base, two positions that were black holes from a production standpoint a year ago.

    It's still debatable whether the White Sox have enough pitching to contend in a deep AL Central, but this does look to be an improved team. A breakout season from young left-hander Carlos Rodon, who has a world of potential, could be the X-factor.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    RF Adam Eaton LHP Chris Sale
    SS Jimmy Rollins LHP Jose Quintana
    1B Jose Abreu LHP Carlos Rodon
    3B Todd Frazier LHP John Danks
    LF Melky Cabrera RHP Mat Latos
    DH Avisail GarciaBullpen
    2B Brett Lawrie RHP Zach Putnam
    CF Austin Jackson LHP Dan Jennings
    C Alex Avila RHP Jake Petricka
    Bench LHP Zach Duke
    C Dioner Navarro RHP Matt Albers
    1B/OF Jerry Sands RHP Nate Jones
    IF Tyler Saladino RHP David Robertson
    OF J.B. Shuck 

19. Minnesota Twins

12 of 30

    Miguel Sano is ready to flash his big-time power over a full season of at-bats.
    Miguel Sano is ready to flash his big-time power over a full season of at-bats.Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    A surprise contender into the second half last year, the Minnesota Twins were aided by a 32-21 start to the year and wound up going 51-58 the rest of the way.

    So while their final record may not have been the best indication of how the team performed for the duration of the 2015 season, this is nonetheless a team on the rise with plenty of young talent on the offensive side of things, and a rotation capable of more than they showed a year ago that is set to receive a boost from top prospect Jose Berrios.

    All of that said, Miguel Sano is the player to watch after he posted a .916 OPS with 17 doubles and 18 home runs in 335 plate appearances as a rookie. He's capable of breaking out as one of the game's top power hitters in his first full big league season.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Brian Dozier RHP Ervin Santana
    1B Joe Mauer RHP Kyle Gibson
    RF Miguel Sano RHP Phil Hughes
    3B Trevor Plouffe LHP Tommy Milone
    LF Eddie Rosario RHP Ricky Nolasco
    DH Byung Ho ParkBullpen
    SS Eduardo Escobar RHP Michael Tonkin
    C Kurt Suzuki RHP Ryan Pressly
    CF Byron Buxton LHP Fernando Abad
    Bench RHP Casey Fien
    C John Ryan Murphy RHP Trevor May
    IF/OF Eduardo Nunez RHP Kevin Jepsen
    IF/OF Danny Santana LHP Glen Perkins
    OF Oswaldo Arcia  

18. Tampa Bay Rays

13 of 30

    With Jake McGee traded and Brad Boxberger shelved, the closer's role belongs to Alex Colome (pictured) for the time being.
    With Jake McGee traded and Brad Boxberger shelved, the closer's role belongs to Alex Colome (pictured) for the time being.Jennifer Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Tampa Bay Rays took a 5-3 loss at the hands of the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday, as ace Chris Archer struggled to command his fastball but still managed to strike out 12 hitters over five innings of work.

    Archer fronts a starting rotation that should once again be a strength of the team, but this year's Rays will hope to get more help from an offensive attack that added Corey Dickerson, Logan Morrison, Brad Miller, Steve Pearce and Hank Conger to the mix this offseason.

    The bullpen is also in a state of flux once again, but no organization has proved better at piecing together a relief corps over the years than the Rays. With Jake McGee traded and Brad Boxberger on the shelf recovering from core muscle surgery, Alex Colome begins the season in the closer's role.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Logan Forsythe RHP Chris Archer
    1B Logan Morrison LHP Drew Smyly
    3B Evan Longoria RHP Jake Odorizzi
    DH Corey Dickerson LHP Matt Moore
    LF Desmond JenningsBullpen
    SS Brad Miller LHP Dana Eveland
    RF Steven Souza RHP Erasmo Ramirez
    CF Kevin Kiermaier LHP Enny Romero
    C Hank Conger RHP Ryan Webb
    Bench LHP Xavier Cedeno
    C Curt Casali RHP Steven Geltz
    1B/OF Steve Pearce RHP Danny Farquhar
    IF Tim Beckham RHP Alex Colome
    OF Brandon Guyer  

17. Seattle Mariners

14 of 30

    Look for big things out of Ketel Marte in his first full season in the majors.
    Look for big things out of Ketel Marte in his first full season in the majors.Ted S. Warren/Associated Press

    Team Outlook

    New general manager Jerry Dipoto wasted little time putting his stamp on the Seattle Mariners organization. While the team didn't make any additions on par with the recent signings of Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz, it plugged holes up and down.

    All told, there are 13 newcomers on the Opening Day roster, and that's not counting relievers Ryan Cook and Evan Scribner who will begin the season on the disabled list.

    The term "post-hype sleeper" is generally applied to a former top prospect who breaks out later than expected, but the Mariners could be this year's post-hype sleeper team after entering last year among the AL favorites before falling flat.

    They have a solid lineup top-to-bottom, good starting pitching depth and what looks to be an improved bullpen. In the end, it could be young players like Taijuan Walker, Ketel Marte and Tony Zych and their continued development that prove to be the difference.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    LF Nori Aoki RHP Felix Hernandez
    3B Kyle Seager RHP Hisashi Iwakuma
    2B Robinson Cano LHP Wade Miley
    DH Nelson Cruz RHP Taijuan Walker
    1B Adam Lind RHP Nate Karns
    RF Seth SmithBullpen
    SS Ketel Marte LHP Mike Montgomery
    C Chris Iannetta RHP Nick Vincent
    CF Leonys Martin RHP Joel Peralta
    Bench RHP Tony Zych
    C Steve Clevenger LHP Vidal Nuno
    1B Dae-Ho Lee RHP Joaquin Benoit
    IF Luis Sardinas RHP Steve Cishek
    OF Franklin Gutierrez 

16. Arizona Diamondbacks

15 of 30

    A change of scenery could greatly benefit Jean Segura in 2016.
    A change of scenery could greatly benefit Jean Segura in 2016.Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    After a huge offseason that saw Zack Greinke and Shelby Miller added to the starting rotation, the Arizona Diamondbacks were dealt a huge blow over the weekend when it was announced that center fielder A.J. Pollock has a fractured elbow.

    "It's frustrating because how amazing I feel like our team is, and they're still going to be great," Pollock said, per the Associated Press, via ESPN.com.

    There's no timetable for his return, but he is hoping to be back in 2016.

    Someone will now need to fill in offensively to help Paul Goldschmidt and David Peralta shoulder the load offensively, but there's no replacing Pollock, who was a 7.4 WAR player a year ago.

    That injury is enough to bump the Diamondbacks to third among the trio of NL West contenders, but this team is still capable of making noise with its improved pitching staff and the best hitter in the National League in Goldschmidt.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Jean Segura RHP Zack Greinke
    3B Jake Lamb LHP Patrick Corbin
    1B Paul Goldschmidt RHP Shelby Miller
    RF David Peralta RHP Rubby De La Rosa
    C Welington Castillo LHP Robbie Ray
    CF Socrates Brito Bullpen
    LF Yasmany Tomas RHP Jake Barrett
    SS Nick Ahmed RHP Silvino Bracho
    Bench RHP Randall Delgado
    C Chris Herrmann LHP Andrew Chafin
    IF/OF Brandon Drury RHP Daniel Hudson
    IF/OF Phil Gosselin RHP Tyler Clippard
    IF/OF Chris Owings RHP Brad Ziegler
    IF/OF Rickie Weeks 

15. Los Angeles Dodgers

16 of 30

    An injury-filled spring has opened the door for Ross Stripling to be the Dodgers' No. 5 starter.
    An injury-filled spring has opened the door for Ross Stripling to be the Dodgers' No. 5 starter.Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    Remember, we're ranking teams based on where they stand at this very moment, and after an injury-riddled spring training, the Los Angeles Dodgers are left looking like a middle-of-the-pack team to begin the year.

    The big storyline following the loss of Zack Greinke in free agency was that this year's team would actually be in a better position thanks to improved starting pitching depth. But when the dust settled on the preseason, it's unproven 26-year-old Ross Stripling rounding out the rotation.

    If Yasiel Puig bounces back...if Kenta Maeda makes an impact...if Corey Seager lives up to lofty expectations...if Joc Pederson plays like he did in the first half last year...there are simply too many ifs tied to the Dodgers' hopes of contending for another NL West title right now for them to rank any higher.

    However, there's still the potential for this to be a top-10 team if things fall into place.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    LF Carl Crawford LHP Clayton Kershaw
    RF Yasiel Puig LHP Scott Kazmir
    3B Justin Turner RHP Kenta Maeda
    1B Adrian Gonzalez LHP Alex Wood
    2B Chase Utley RHP Ross Stripling
    SS Corey Seager Bullpen
    C A.J. Ellis RHP Joe Blanton
    CF Joc Pederson RHP Louis Coleman
    Bench RHP Yimi Garcia
    C Austin Barnes RHP Pedro Baez
    1B/OF Scott Van Slyke LHP J.P. Howell
    IF Charlie Culberson RHP Chris Hatcher
    IF/OF Kike Hernandez RHP Kenley Jansen
    OF Trayce Thompson 

14. Cleveland Indians

17 of 30

    Spring star Tyler Naquin won the starting center field job.
    Spring star Tyler Naquin won the starting center field job.Gregg Forwerck/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    On the strength of the best starting rotation in the American League and a subtly improved offense, the Cleveland Indians should be able to make some noise in the AL Central and AL wild-card races this season.

    In a somewhat surprising decision, Trevor Bauer will begin the year in the bullpen and Cody Anderson will be slotted alongside Josh Tomlin at the back of the rotation. Then again, Anderson went 7-3 with a 3.05 ERA and 1.106 WHIP in 15 starts as a rookie last year, so he's by no means an unknown.

    While the team patiently awaits the return of Michael Brantley from offseason shoulder surgery, it'll rely on newcomers Mike Napoli, Rajai Davis, Marlon Byrd and Juan Uribe to help provide an offensive spark.

    Rookie Tyler Naquin could also help jump-start the offensive attack after winning the starting center field job on the strength of a .397 average and 10 extra-base hits this spring.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    LF Rajai Davis RHP Corey Kluber
    2B Jason Kipnis RHP Carlos Carrasco
    SS Francisco Lindor RHP Danny Salazar
    DH Carlos Santana RHP Cody Anderson
    1B Mike Napoli RHP Josh Tomlin
    C Yan Gomes Bullpen
    RF Marlon Byrd RHP Jeff Manship
    3B Juan Uribe RHP Dan Otero
    CF Tyler Naquin LHP Ross Detwiler
    Bench RHP Joba Chamberlain
    C Roberto Perez RHP Trevor Bauer
    IF/OF Jose Ramirez RHP Zach McAllister
    OF Collin Cowgill RHP Bryan Shaw
      RHP Cody Allen

13. New York Yankees

18 of 30

    Andrew Miller will be pitching through a right hand injury to start the season.
    Andrew Miller will be pitching through a right hand injury to start the season.Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The New York Yankees didn't spend a dime in free agency, but they did add a trio of potential impact players via trade in Aroldis Chapman, Starlin Castro and Aaron Hicks.

    After ranking second in the majors in runs scored last year, the offense looks to be in good shape once again as long as they can avoid injury.

    Jacoby Ellsbury (.220 BA, .593 OPS) and Brett Gardner (.206 BA, .592 OPS) are both looking to rebound from dreadful second-half performances, and Alex Rodriguez will try to fight off Father Time for another year.

    It's the starting rotation that will determine how good this Yankees team can be, as there's a ton of upside on their staff but an equal share of bust potential. At the very least, Luis Severino will need to take that next step forward, and both Masahiro Tanaka and Michael Pineda will need to stay healthy.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Jacoby Ellsbury RHP Masahiro Tanaka
    LF Brett Gardner RHP Michael Pineda
    DH Alex Rodriguez RHP Nathan Eovaldi
    1B Mark Teixeira RHP Luis Severino
    C Brian McCann LHP CC Sabathia
    RF Carlos BeltranBullpen
    3B Chase Headley RHP Ivan Nova
    2B Starlin Castro RHP Luis Cessa
    SS Didi Gregorius RHP Kirby Yates
    Bench RHP Johnny Barbato
    C Austin Romine LHP Chasen Shreve
    IF Ronald Torreyes RHP Dellin Betances
    IF/OF Dustin Ackley LHP Andrew Miller
    OF Aaron Hicks 

12. Boston Red Sox

19 of 30

    There will be plenty of attention on Travis Shaw (pictured) after he beat out Pablo Sandoval for the third base job.
    There will be plenty of attention on Travis Shaw (pictured) after he beat out Pablo Sandoval for the third base job.Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    There was no shortage of storylines in Boston Red Sox camp this spring, but the two big takeaways are the knee injury that will sideline Eduardo Rodriguez to start the year and the team's decision to go with Travis Shaw over Pablo Sandoval at third base.

    Rodriguez turned heads as a rookie when he went 10-6 with a 3.85 ERA and 1.290 WHIP over 21 starts, and the hope was that he could emerge as a solid No. 2 behind David Price in the rotation.

    A knee injury has him on the DL to begin the year, though, and he's expected to be out until mid-May, per Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe.

    As for the third base battle, Shaw (.338 BA, .887 OPS) deserved the job over an out-of-shape Sandoval (.204 BA, .639 OPS) based on spring performance, and perhaps that will light a fire under the guy the team paid $95 million for last winter.

    The additions of Price and Craig Kimbrel to the pitching staff and the continued emergence of Mookie Betts and Xander Bogaerts as bona fide stars should make the Red Sox a significantly improved team in 2016.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    RF Mookie Betts LHP David Price
    2B Dustin Pedroia RHP Clay Buchholz
    SS Xander Bogaerts RHP Joe Kelly
    DH David Ortiz RHP Rick Porcello
    1B Hanley Ramirez RHP Steven Wright
    3B Travis ShawBullpen
    LF Brock Holt RHP Noe Ramirez
    C Blake Swihart LHP Tommy Layne
    CF Jackie Bradley Jr. RHP Matt Barnes
    Bench LHP Robbie Ross Jr.
    C Ryan Hanigan RHP Junichi Tazawa
    3B Pablo Sandoval RHP Koji Uehara
    OF Rusney Castillo RHP Craig Kimbrel
    OF Chris Young 

11. Pittsburgh Pirates

20 of 30

    Juan Nicasio pitched his way into a rotation spot after a brilliant spring.
    Juan Nicasio pitched his way into a rotation spot after a brilliant spring.Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Pittsburgh Pirates bested the St. Louis Cardinals 4-1 on Opening Day behind a terrific start from Francisco Liriano, who struck out 10 and allowed just three hits over six scoreless innings of work to earn the victory.

    Jon Niese, Juan Nicasio, Ryan Vogelsong, Kyle Lobstein, Cory Luebke and Neftali Feliz are all newcomers to a pitching staff that ranked second in the majors with a 3.21 ERA last year, and that personnel transition will go a long way in determining how good this team can be in 2016.

    Nicasio could be the real X-factor in that group, as he struck out 24 over 15 scoreless innings of work in spring training to push his way into the starting rotation. At any rate, top prospects Tyler Glasnow and Jameson Taillon are expected to factor into the pitching staff at some point as well.

    Of course, the team is also waiting on the return of Jung Ho Kang from the leg injury he suffered in September, and the addition of David Freese on a one-year, $3 million deal to serve as a stopgap will give them plenty of flexibility once Kang is back in the lineup.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    1B John Jaso LHP Francisco Liriano
    CF Andrew McCutchen LHP Jon Niese
    3B David Freese RHP Juan Nicasio
    LF Starling Marte RHP Gerrit Cole
    C Francisco Cervelli LHP Jeff Locke
    RF Gregory Polanco Bullpen
    2B Josh Harrison LHP Kyle Lobstein
    SS Jordy Mercer RHP Ryan Vogelsong
    Bench LHP Cory Luebke
    C Chris Stewart RHP Neftali Feliz
    1B/OF Michael Morse RHP Arquimedes Caminero
    IF/OF Cole Figueroa LHP Tony Watson
    IF/OF Sean Rodriguez RHP Mark Melancon
    OF Matt Joyce 

10. Washington Nationals

21 of 30

    A healthy Anthony Rendon could make a huge impact for the Nationals.
    A healthy Anthony Rendon could make a huge impact for the Nationals.Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    No team was a bigger disappointment in 2015 than the Washington Nationals, who were the odds-on favorite to win the World Series after adding Max Scherzer to a rotation that was already one of the best in baseball.

    A rash of injuries to key players and a healthy amount of underperforming from the rotation left them on the outside looking in when the playoffs rolled around, but there's still a ton of talent on this team and a new hand on the wheel in manager Dusty Baker.

    Daniel Murphy, Ben Revere and a foursome of relievers headlined the team's offseason additions, but the biggest addition could be a healthy Anthony Rendon. The 25-year-old finished fifth in NL MVP voting in 2014, but injuries limited him to just 80 games last year.

    With a revamped bullpen, a healthy lineup and prospects like Lucas Giolito and Trea Turner ready to provide second-half reinforcements, there's a lot to like about the Nationals once again this year. It's just a matter of whether they can turn talent into wins.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Ben Revere RHP Max Scherzer
    3B Anthony Rendon LHP Gio Gonzalez
    RF Bryce Harper RHP Stephen Strasburg
    1B Ryan Zimmerman RHP Tanner Roark
    2B Daniel Murphy RHP Joe Ross
    LF Jayson Werth Bullpen
    C Wilson Ramos RHP Yusmeiro Petit
    SS Danny Espinosa LHP Felipe Rivero
    Bench RHP Blake Treinen
    C Jose Lobaton LHP Oliver Perez
    1B/OF Clint Robinson RHP Matt Belisle
    IF Stephen Drew RHP Shawn Kelley
    OF Chris Heisey RHP Jonathan Papelbon
    OF Michael Taylor 

9. Detroit Tigers

22 of 30

    Justin Upton was one of a number of significant additions to the Tigers roster this offseason.
    Justin Upton was one of a number of significant additions to the Tigers roster this offseason.Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    I'm admittedly higher on Detroit than most, but after the Tigers added Justin Upton to an already talented lineup, signed Jordan Zimmermann to bolster the rotation and finally addressed the bullpen, there's no ignoring that they're a vastly improved team.

    Victor Martinez (.245 BA, .667 OPS) and Anibal Sanchez (10-10, 4.99 ERA) are both coming off of rough seasons, but they are still capable of star-caliber production. Rebound seasons from those two could prove equally impactful.

    Then there are young players like James McCann, Nick Castellanos and Daniel Norris—who will eventually join the rotation once he's recovered from a spine injury—who are capable of taking a step forward.

    Everyone in the AL Central is chasing the defending champion Kansas City Royals for now, but expect the Tigers to be in the playoff mix after falling to the cellar a year ago.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Ian Kinsler RHP Justin Verlander
    LF Justin Upton RHP Anibal Sanchez
    1B Miguel Cabrera RHP Jordan Zimmermann
    DH Victor Martinez RHP Mike Pelfrey
    RF J.D. Martinez RHP Shane Greene
    3B Nick Castellanos Bullpen
    C James McCann RHP Buck Farmer
    SS Jose Iglesias RHP Logan Kensing
    CF Anthony Gose LHP Kyle Ryan
    Bench RHP Drew VerHagen
    C Jarrod Saltalamacchia LHP Justin Wilson
    IF/OF Mike Aviles RHP Mark Lowe
    IF/OF Andrew Romine RHP Francisco Rodriguez
    OF Tyler Collins 

8. St. Louis Cardinals

23 of 30

    With injuries to Jhonny Peralta and Ruben Tejada, offseason-addition Jedd Gyorko has become significantly more important.
    With injuries to Jhonny Peralta and Ruben Tejada, offseason-addition Jedd Gyorko has become significantly more important.Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    It was just one game, but a 4-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates where they managed just five hits and didn't score their lone run until the ninth inning was not exactly what the St. Louis Cardinals wanted to see out of an offense that has been questioned all offseason.

    No matter how you slice it, second-year outfielders Stephen Piscotty and Randal Grichuk are going to have to improve offensively, especially with Jhonny Peralta sidelined until midseason with a thumb injury.

    That being said, this is a Cardinals team that led the majors with a 2.94 team ERA last season without ace Adam Wainwright for most of the year, and pitching is once again going to be its strength.

    Top-to-bottom, the Cardinals' starting rotation may be better than any team's outside of the New York Mets. While they still need someone to step into the right-handed setup role, the bullpen looks strong once again as well.

    Remember, this was a 100-win team in 2015, and there's a reason it's been to the playoffs in 12 of the past 16 seasons.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    3B Matt Carpenter RHP Adam Wainwright
    RF Stephen Piscotty RHP Michael Wacha
    LF Matt Holliday RHP Mike Leake
    CF Randal Grichuk LHP Jaime Garcia
    1B Matt Adams RHP Carlos Martinez
    C Yadier MolinaBullpen
    2B Kolten Wong RHP Matt Bowman
    SS Jedd Gyorko LHP Tyler Lyons
    Bench RHP Seth Maness
    C Eric Fryer RHP Seung Hwan Oh
    1B/OF Brandon Moss RHP Jonathan Broxton
    IF Greg Garcia LHP Kevin Siegrist
    OF Jeremy Hazelbaker RHP Trevor Rosenthal
    OF Tommy Pham  

7. San Francisco Giants

24 of 30

    Denard Span could be a real difference-maker at the top of the lineup for the Giants.
    Denard Span could be a real difference-maker at the top of the lineup for the Giants.Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    Opting against simply relying on their even-year magic to continue, the San Francisco Giants had a busy offseason as they added Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija to the starting rotation and Denard Span to the top of the lineup.

    There was an obvious need for reliable starting pitching behind Madison Bumgarner last year, and a move back to the National League and a pitcher-friendly park should benefit both Cueto and Samardzija, who are more than capable of being front-line arms.

    As for Span, he played in only 61 games last season while battling a hip injury that eventually required surgery, and that took a significant bite out of his free-agent value, as he wound up signing a three-year, $31 million deal. If he's back to 100 percent and stays that way, he could be the steal of the winter.

    Hunter Pence and Matt Cain also fall under the category of injury question marks. While the team does have a viable replacement for Cain in Chris Heston, keeping Pence on the field will be key.

    To that point, the Giants were 34-18 (.654) with Pence in the lineup last year, compared to 50-60 (.455) without him.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Denard Span LHP Madison Bumgarner
    2B Joe Panik RHP Johnny Cueto
    C Buster Posey RHP Jeff Samardzija
    RF Hunter Pence RHP Jake Peavy
    1B Brandon Belt RHP Matt Cain
    3B Matt DuffyBullpen
    SS Brandon Crawford RHP Chris Heston
    LF Angel Pagan RHP Cory Gearrin
    Bench LHP Javier Lopez
    C Trevor Brown RHP George Kontos
    IF Ehire Adrianza LHP Josh Osich
    IF Kelby Tomlinson RHP Hunter Strickland
    OF Gregor Blanco RHP Sergio Romo
      RHP Santiago Casilla

6. Houston Astros

25 of 30

    A full season of a healthy Carlos Gomez could give the Astros offense a huge boost.
    A full season of a healthy Carlos Gomez could give the Astros offense a huge boost.Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    The Houston Astros' big offseason addition came at the back of the bullpen when they sent a package of five players to the Philadelphia Phillies for closer Ken Giles. He could make a world of difference anchoring a bullpen that was still a weakness at times last year despite vast improvement.

    However, an equally big impact could come in the form of a healthy season from George Springer, a full season of deadline-addition Carlos Gomez and two extra months of Carlos Correa, who debuted last June.

    Tyler White won the first base battle this spring after hitting .353 with three home runs and 12 RBI, but top prospect A.J. Reed will likely debut in 2016.

    Aside from their propensity to strike out, there's no clear weakness on this Astros club, and that didn't stop them from making the playoffs a year ago. The Texas Rangers are the team to beat in the AL West to open the year, but that may not be the case for long.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    2B Jose Altuve LHP Dallas Keuchel
    RF George Springer RHP Collin McHugh
    SS Carlos Correa RHP Mike Fiers
    LF Colby Rasmus RHP Scott Feldman
    CF Carlos Gomez RHP Doug Fister
    DH Preston TuckerBullpen
    3B Luis Valbuena RHP Michael Feliz
    1B Tyler White RHP Pat Neshek
    C Jason Castro RHP Josh Fields
    Bench LHP Tony Sipp
    C Erik Kratz RHP Will Harris
    1B/3B Matt Duffy RHP Luke Gregerson
    IF Marwin Gonzalez RHP Ken Giles
    OF Jake Marisnick  

5. Texas Rangers

26 of 30

    After playing through a thumb injury much of last season, a healthy Adrian Beltre is poised for a big year.
    After playing through a thumb injury much of last season, a healthy Adrian Beltre is poised for a big year.Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    A red-hot 41-22 finish to the season earned the Texas Rangers the AL West title last year, and they appear to be in good position to defend their crown with one of the most complete rosters in baseball.

    Adding Ian Desmond to play left field means they won't need to rely on anything from Josh Hamilton, a good approach given his injury history and general ineffectiveness over the past few seasons.

    That was the only major addition to the roster this offseason, but getting Yu Darvish back healthy and having Cole Hamels for a full season will make a world of difference for a starting rotation that has been a revolving door the past few seasons due to injury.

    Offensively, a healthy Adrian Beltre should improve on what were diminished power numbers a year ago, while 22-year-old Rougned Odor has the tools to be one of the breakout stars of 2016 after turning heads in the postseason.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Delino DeShields Jr. LHP Cole Hamels
    RF Shin-Soo Choo LHP Derek Holland
    DH Prince Fielder RHP Colby Lewis
    3B Adrian Beltre LHP Martin Perez
    1B Mitch Moreland Bullpen
    LF Ian Desmond RHP Phil Klein
    2B Rougned Odor LHP Andrew Faulkner
    SS Elvis Andrus RHP Tony Barnette
    C Robinson Chirinos RHP Sam Dyson
    Bench LHP Jake Diekman
    C Bryan Holaday RHP Tom Wilhelmsen
    IF Hanser Alberto RHP Keone Kela
    IF/OF Ryan Rua RHP Shawn Tolleson
    OF Justin Ruggiano  

4. New York Mets

27 of 30

    Michael Conforto is primed for a big sophomore season after turning heads as a rookie.
    Michael Conforto is primed for a big sophomore season after turning heads as a rookie.Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    Despite a late-game rally, the New York Mets dropped their opener to the Kansas City Royals by a score of 4-3 as Matt Harvey took the loss with eight hits and four runs (three earned) allowed over 5.2 innings.

    Subpar first start from Harvey aside, the Mets starting rotation still appears to be the best in baseball by a wide margin, and it will only get better once Zack Wheeler returns from Tommy John surgery around midseason.

    It was the offense that was an issue for much of last season until the Mets acquired Yoenis Cespedes and others at the trade deadline. Finding a way to re-sign Cespedes this winter solidified the Mets as favorites in the NL East and legitimate contenders to defend their NL pennant.

    Keeping David Wright healthy remains a priority, but the additions of Neil Walker and Asdrubal Cabrera have given the team enough infield depth that they are better prepared to be without Wright for extended time this year.

    If there's one player to point to as a potential X-factor, it's outfielder Michael Conforto, who posted an .841 OPS over 194 plate appearances as a rookie. He's capable of emerging as an impact middle-of-the-order bat in his second season.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    RF Curtis Granderson RHP Matt Harvey
    3B David Wright RHP Noah Syndergaard
    CF Yoenis Cespedes RHP Jacob deGrom
    1B Lucas Duda RHP Bartolo Colon
    2B Neil Walker LHP Steven Matz
    LF Michael Conforto Bullpen
    SS Asdrubal Cabrera RHP Logan Verrett
    C Travis d'Arnaud RHP Jim Henderson
    Bench LHP Jerry Blevins
    C Kevin Plawecki RHP Hansel Robles
    IF Wilmer Flores LHP Antonio Bastardo
    IF/OF Eric Campbell RHP Addison Reed
    OF Alejandro De Aza RHP Jeurys Familia
    OF Juan Lagares  

3. Kansas City Royals

28 of 30

    A healthy Kris Medlen could give the Royals starting rotation a real shot in the arm.
    A healthy Kris Medlen could give the Royals starting rotation a real shot in the arm.Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Team Outlook

    The Kansas City Royals proudly raised their World Series flag to kick off the season on Sunday Night Baseball, then went out and bested the New York Mets once again with a 4-3 victory behind a terrific start by Edinson Volquez.

    With essentially the same lineup and a bullpen expected to be a strength once again despite the struggles of Joakim Soria on Sunday, it's Volquez and the rest of the rotation who will determine just how good the Royals can be.

    Chris Young earned a full-time spot on the staff after serving as a swingman much of last season, and a fully healthy Kris Medlen joins him after splitting time between starting and relieving last year.

    Those two join newcomer Ian Kennedy, who will eat up innings if nothing else, and flamethrower Yordano Ventura, who struggled at times last year but looked like an ace in going 7-1 with a 2.38 ERA over his final 11 regular-season starts.

    There's no overlooking the Royals this time around, and while they may not be the World Series favorites, they're still as dangerous as any team in baseball if they can make it to October.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    SS Alcides Escobar RHP Edinson Volquez
    3B Mike Moustakas RHP Chris Young
    CF Lorenzo Cain RHP Yordano Ventura
    1B Eric Hosmer RHP Ian Kennedy
    DH Kendrys Morales RHP Kris Medlen
    LF Alex GordonBullpen
    C Salvador Perez RHP Dillon Gee
    2B Omar Infante RHP Chien-Ming Wang
    RF Reymond Fuentes RHP Luke Hochevar
    Bench LHP Danny Duffy
    C Tony Cruz RHP Joakim Soria
    IF Christian Colon RHP Kelvin Herrera
    OF Terrance Gore RHP Wade Davis
    OF Paulo Orlando 

2. Toronto Blue Jays

29 of 30

    It's just one game,  but Marcus Stroman looked awfully good on Opening Day.
    It's just one game, but Marcus Stroman looked awfully good on Opening Day.Chris O'Meara/Associated Press

    Team Outlook

    The Toronto Blue Jays were simply on another level offensively last season, averaging 5.5 runs per game and scoring 127 more runs than any other team in baseball.

    There's no reason to think things will be any different this year. With a full season of Troy Tulowitzki (assuming he stays healthy) and Michael Saunders taking over in left field, they could potentially be even more dangerous.

    So with the offense obviously stacked, the question is whether or not they have the pitching to be considered serious World Series contenders after losing deadline pickup David Price in free agency.

    Marcus Stroman now takes over as staff ace, and he was brilliant in the opener with eight strong innings. R.A. Dickey, J.A. Happ, Aaron Sanchez and, once he's healthy, Marco Estrada make up the rest of the staff. While it may not look great on paper, it's a group capable of being above average. That may be all they need in front of that offense.

    Adding Drew Storen, Jesse Chavez, Franklin Morales and Gavin Floyd to the bullpen also gives them an added dimension. Storen is a viable closer option if something happens to Roberto Osuna, while Floyd and Chavez are both capable of going multiple innings or even starting if need be.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Kevin Pillar RHP Marcus Stroman
    3B Josh Donaldson RHP R.A. Dickey
    RF Jose Bautista LHP J.A. Happ
    DH Edwin Encarnacion RHP Aaron Sanchez
    SS Troy Tulowitzki Bullpen
    1B Chris Colabello RHP Gavin Floyd
    LF Michael Saunders RHP Joe Biagini
    C Russell Martin RHP Arnold Leon
    2B Ryan Goins LHP Franklin Morales
    Bench RHP Jesse Chavez
    C Josh Thole LHP Brett Cecil
    1B Justin Smoak RHP Drew Storen
    IF Darwin Barney RHP Roberto Osuna
    OF Ezequiel Carrera  

1. Chicago Cubs

30 of 30

    Manager Joe Maddon will love having the versatile Ben Zobrist back on his team.
    Manager Joe Maddon will love having the versatile Ben Zobrist back on his team.Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

    Team Outlook

    Already arguably the best team in baseball on paper heading into the offseason, the Chicago Cubs added Jason Heyward, Ben Zobrist and John Lackey in free agency and immediately became the favorites to win it all in 2016.

    That's a tall order for a franchise that hasn't hoisted the trophy since 1908 and is heavily reliant on a core of young position players, but it's impossible to ignore just how much talent the Cubs have assembled three years removed from a 96-loss season.

    Adding Heyward and Zobrist gives a lineup prone to striking out a pair of solid on-base threats, while Lackey is the proven No. 3 starter the team was lacking when the playoffs rolled around a year ago.

    The decision to re-sign Dexter Fowler means manager Joe Maddon will have his hands full trying to find enough playing for both Kyle Schwarber and Jorge Soler, not to mention Javier Baez who is expected to serve in a super utility role, but it's a good problem to have.

    The Cubs arrived a year ahead of schedule last season and surprised some people, but it's a completely different ballgame being the favorites and having that target on their backs from Day 1. How they handle that pressure will determine just how good they can be, and the calming influence of Maddon at the helm will go a long way.

     

    Opening Day Roster

    Starting LineupStarting Rotation
    CF Dexter Fowler RHP Jake Arrieta
    RF Jason Heyward LHP Jon Lester
    3B Kris Bryant RHP John Lackey
    1B Anthony Rizzo RHP Jason Hammel
    2B Ben Zobrist RHP Kyle Hendricks
    LF Kyle Schwarber Bullpen
    C Miguel Montero RHP Adam Warren
    SS Addison Russell LHP Clayton Richard
    Bench RHP Neil Ramirez
    C David Ross RHP Trevor Cahill
    IF Tommy La Stella LHP Travis Wood
    OF Jorge Soler RHP Justin Grimm
    OF Matt Szczur RHP Pedro Strop
      RHP Hector Rondon

     

    All regular-season stats courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com, while spring stats come via MLB.com.