MLB Power Rankings: Where All 30 Teams Stand After 2022 Opening Weekend

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistApril 12, 2022

MLB Power Rankings: Where All 30 Teams Stand After 2022 Opening Weekend

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    Mike Carlson/Associated Press

    The 2022 MLB season is officially underway!

    This is now my 11th year authoring our weekly MLB power rankings here at Bleacher Report, and it's still a struggle knowing exactly how to handle the first update of the season following the opening weekend of games.

    I've tried a variety of different approaches over the years, but I think the best way to handle things is to simply wash away preseason expectations and rank teams based solely on what they did on the field to begin the year.

    These rankings are updated on a weekly basis, so why not reward a team that got off to a better-than-expected start while also dropping a likely contender that stumbled out of the gates? We're not ranking teams on potential; we're ranking them on production.

    After a few weeks, the line between contenders and non-contenders will start to take shape, but for now just sit back and enjoy the chaos!

        

    Note: All statistics and analysis in this article reflect MLB action through Sunday's games. Records have been updated to include Monday's results.

Nos. 30-26

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    Corey Seager
    Corey SeagerDiamond Images/Getty Images

    30. Baltimore Orioles (1-3)

    Previous Rank: 28

    The Orioles were outscored 15-4 in their season-opening series against the Tampa Bay Rays, including an 8-0 shutout on Sunday. It was a less-than-ideal start for a team that was shut out 10 times a year ago and figures to once again struggle to string together wins amid an ongoing rebuild.

         

    29. Arizona Diamondbacks (1-3)

    Previous Rank: 26

    After getting a walk-off home run from rookie Seth Beer on Opening Day, the D-backs lost three straight to close out their four-game series with the San Diego Padres. The offense managed just 15 hits in four games, and finding consistent production at the plate could be an issue all season.

         

    28. Texas Rangers (1-3)

    Previous Rank: 25

    The Rangers outscored the Toronto Blue Jays by a 23-20 margin in their season-opening three-game series but came away with a losing record and without ace Jon Gray, who was placed on the injured list with a blister after making his first start with the team. High-priced offseason addition Corey Seager (6-for-13, 2B) is off to a nice start.

          

    27. Miami Marlins (1-3)

    Previous Rank: 17

    The trio of Sandy Alcantara, Trevor Rogers and Pablo Lopez each gave the Marlins five strong innings in their season debuts, but as was the case throughout the 2021 season, the offense failed to pull its weight with nine runs in three games. The middle-of-the-order trio of Jesus Sanchez, Avisail Garcia and Jesus Aguilar went a combined 6-for-38 with one RBI and 10 strikeouts in the series.

            

    26. Boston Red Sox (1-3)

    Previous Rank: 11

    The Red Sox avoided a season-opening sweep at the hands of the rival New York Yankees with a 4-3 victory on Sunday, with the bullpen tossing 5.2 scoreless innings behind starter Tanner Houck. The relief corps has a 0.69 ERA through 13 innings of work, though it did allow a walk-off win on Opening Day. The Sox won't play the Yankees again until July 7.

Nos. 25-21

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    Noah Syndergaard
    Noah SyndergaardMichael Owens/Getty Images

    25. Milwaukee Brewers (1-3)

    Previous Rank: 10

    The Brewers used a three-run sixth inning on Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep, but it was a bit surprising to see the All-Star trio of Corbin Burnes, Brandon Woodruff and Freddy Peralta post a combined 9.23 ERA with a pair of no-decisions and a loss. A .207 average and just nine runs scored in three games is an inauspicious start for a team that was undermined by its lack of offensive firepower a year ago.

           

    24. Pittsburgh Pirates (1-2)

    Previous Rank: 29

    The Pirates jumped on St. Louis Cardinals starter Steven Matz for nine hits and seven earned runs in three innings on Sunday en route to a 9-4 victory. Michael Chavis delivered the big blow with a grand slam, and he is one of a handful of players trying to carve out a regular role in a lineup that is very much a work-in-progress.

        

    23. Los Angeles Dodgers (1-2)

    Previous Rank: 1

    Will this be the Dodgers' floor in our rankings? Relief ace Blake Treinen surrendered the go-ahead run in the eighth inning on Saturday, and Julio Urias was knocked around for six hits and six runs (three earned) on Sunday, so it's been a shaky start for the pitching staff. An off day on Monday will give them a chance to regroup after the series loss to the Colorado Rockies.

         

    22. Washington Nationals (2-3)

    Previous Rank: 27

    If the opening weekend is any indication, the left side of the infield of Alcides Escobar (1-for-10, 5 K) and Maikel Franco (1-for-13, 4 K) could be a real black hole for the Nationals this season. The bullpen has at least looked sharp in the early going, and it will likely be asked to handle a significant workload this year.

         

    21. Los Angeles Angels (2-3)

    Previous Rank: 29

    Noah Syndergaard tossed 5.1 scoreless innings in his Angels debut and Mike Trout crushed a 445-foot bomb for his first home run of the season, but the end result was a 1-3 showing against the division-rival Houston Astros. They only scored 10 runs in the four-game series, six of which came in a 13-6 loss, so things will need to improve at the plate.

Nos. 20-16

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    Zack Greinke
    Zack GreinkeLG Patterson/Getty Images

    20. Atlanta Braves (2-3)

    Previous Rank: 4

    So far, so good flipping the page from Freddie Freeman to Matt Olson at first base, as the offseason addition went 8-for-14 with two doubles and a home run in his first weekend in a Braves uniform. Ugly starts from Max Fried (5.2 IP, 8 H, 5 ER) and Ian Anderson (2.2 IP, 3 H, 5 BB, 5 ER) forced them to settle for a four-game split.

          

    19. Oakland Athletics (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 30

    A strong start from rookie right-hander Daulton Jefferies (W, 5.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER) was the highlight of the week for the Athletics, and the organization has had some great success of late turning post-hype prospects into solid rotation pieces. The offense drawing just four walks in three games is alarming to say the least.

           

    18. Detroit Tigers (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 19

    Shortstop Javier Baez delivered a dramatic walk-off hit for the Tigers on Opening Day against the Chicago White Sox, but they lost their next two against the South Siders, including a 10-1 shellacking on Sunday. Top prospect Spencer Torkelson is 0-for-8 with six strikeouts to begin his MLB career, though he has drawn three walks.

           

    17. Minnesota Twins (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 18

    The Twins plated 10 runs on Sunday to pick up their first win of the season, with Byron Buxton homering twice to give him an MLB-leading three home runs through his first 13 plate appearances. The rotation remains a major question mark, but the bullpen looked solid, allowing just two earned runs in 13.1 innings of work.

             

    16. Kansas City Royals (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 22

    Entering play on Monday, the Royals were the only team in baseball that had not yet hit a home run, yet they had still managed to win two of three over the Guardians. The veteran duo of Zack Greinke (5.2 IP, 5 H, 1 ER) and Brad Keller (6.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER) both threw the ball well atop the starting rotation, and seven runs on offense was enough to secure a pair of wins.

Nos. 15-11

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    Steven Kwan
    Steven KwanIcon Sportswire/Getty Images

    15. Cleveland Guardians (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 20

    Thanks in part to a stellar performance from rookie outfielder Steven Kwan (8-for-10, 2 2B), the Guardians entered Monday leading the majors in batting average (.298). However, most of their offensive damage came in a 17-3 victory on Sunday, a day after they were shut out over 10 innings.

           

    14. Cincinnati Reds (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 23

    The Reds managed to pull out a four-game split against the defending champion Atlanta Braves behind a strong debut from top prospect Hunter Greene (W, 5.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 K) on Sunday. The offense hit .200 with a .543 OPS and 39 strikeouts, so there is work to be done, but the pitching has looked strong for the most part.

            

    13. Seattle Mariners (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 16

    The young duo of Julio Rodriguez (1-for-12) and Jarred Kelenic (1-for-11) is off to a slow start, but the Mariners still took two of three from the Twins over the weekend. New ace Robbie Ray (W, 7.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER) and Logan Gilbert (5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 7 K) looked great on the mound, and the bullpen should be a strength once again.

            

    12. San Francisco Giants (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 14

    Two games into the season, the Giants promoted top prospect Heliot Ramos to the majors, and he went 2-for-3 with a run scored in his MLB debut. His right-handed bat is a good complement to left-handed hitting outfielders Mike Yastrzemski, Joc Pederson and Steven Duggar, so he could be up for good. The one-two punch of Logan Webb (6.0 IP, 5 H, 1 ER) and Carlos Rodon (5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 12 K) has come out of the gates firing.

            

    11. New York Yankees (2-2)

    Previous Rank: 6

    Giancarlo Stanton (5-for-13, 2 HR, 4 RBI) and Anthony Rizzo (3-for-10, 2 HR, 6 RBI) did the heavy lifting for the Yankees offensively in a series win over the Red Sox, while the bullpen also came through in a big way. None of the three starting pitchers lasted beyond the fourth inning, and the relief corps posted an 0.96 ERA and a .102 opponents' batting average in 18.2 frames.

Nos. 10-6

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    Seiya Suzuki
    Seiya SuzukiNuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images

    10. New York Mets (3-2)

    Previous Rank: 7

    No Jacob deGrom? No problem. The Mets took three of four from the Nationals on the road behind strong work on the mound from Tylor Megill (W, 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 ER), Max Scherzer (W, 6.0 IP, 3 H, 3 ER), Chris Bassitt (W, 6.0 IP, 3 H, 0 ER) and Carlos Carrasco (ND, 5.2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER). Offensively, newcomers Mark Canha, Eduardo Escobar and Starling Marte combined for 13 hits while each sitting for one game in the series.

             

    9. Chicago Cubs (2-1)

    Previous Rank: 21

    The Cubs beat Corbin Burnes and Brandon Woodruff back-to-back to start the season, and they had a chance to complete the sweep at home on Sunday before giving up the lead late. Rookie right fielder Seiya Suzuki has three hits, four walks and six RBI in his first 13 plate appearances, and the team as a whole has tallied 17 walks with a .374 on-base percentage through three games.

             

    8. St. Louis Cardinals (2-1)

    Previous Rank: 13

    The Cardinals took two of three from the lowly Pirates behind a big series at the plate from Nolan Arenado (6-for-12, 3 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI) and a strong start from ageless wonder Adam Wainwright (W, 6.0 IP, 5 H, 0 ER) on Opening Day. Albert Pujols went 0-for-5 in his first start back in St. Louis, but he should be in the lineup again on Tuesday with left-hander Daniel Lynch slated to start for the Royals.

            

    7. Chicago White Sox (2-1)

    Previous Rank: 5

    The White Sox got strong work from their starting rotation, but closer Liam Hendriks blew his first save opportunity of the season on Opening Day to keep them from completing a three-game sweep of the Tigers on the road. The offense posted a .778 OPS and racked up 14 extra-base hits in three games, and this group will have no trouble scoring runs this year.

             

    6. Colorado Rockies (3-1)

    Previous Rank: 24

    The Rockies are off to a better start than a year ago when they lost three of four to the Dodgers to begin the year. The bullpen picked up a pair of wins and a pair of saves while allowing eight hits and one earned run in 13 innings during their opening series, which was a welcome sign following a 4.91 ERA and 30 blown saves a year ago.

Nos. 5-1

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    Jeremy Pena
    Jeremy PenaIcon Sportswire/Getty Images

    5. Philadelphia Phillies (3-1)

    Previous Rank: 12

    Kyle Schwarber and Nick Castellanos each hit their first home run in a Phillies uniform, while Corey Knebel nailed down his first save opportunity, as the team's big offseason additions did their part in a series win over the Oakland Athletics. The starting rotation trio of Aaron Nola, Kyle Gibson and Zach Eflin went 2-0 with a 2.12 ERA while tossing a combined 17 innings.

            

    4. Toronto Blue Jays (3-1)

    Previous Rank: 2

    The Blue Jays managed to escape their opening series with a winning record, despite sporting an MLB-worst 7.67 ERA entering play on Monday. It helps that they scored 20 runs of their own, and Jordan Romano did his part at the back of the bullpen with a pair of perfect innings to convert his first two save chances.

           

    3. Houston Astros (3-1)

    Previous Rank: 3

    The Astros took three of four from the Angels, and their only loss was a 2-0 pitchers' duel in which Justin Verlander (5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 7 K) looked sharp in his long-awaited return to the mound. Rookie shortstop Jeremy Pena went 6-for-16 with two doubles and a home run in his first four games in the majors, immediately helping to ease the loss of Carlos Correa.

             

    2. Tampa Bay Rays (3-1)

    Previous Rank: 8

    The Rays were baseball's only undefeated team following the opening weekend, and their pitching staff racked up 37 strikeouts in three games against the punchless Orioles lineup. Young phenom Wander Franco went 6-for-11 with a double and three RBI as he kicked off his first full season in the majors. They have a great opportunity to continue building momentum with a four-game series against Oakland at home.

            

    1. San Diego Padres (4-1)

    Previous Rank: 9

    The foursome of Yu Darvish, Joe Musgrove, Sean Manaea and Nabil Crismatt combined to allow just six hits and two earned runs in 22 innings, with Manaea and Darvish both exiting no-hitters as an early season pitch count precaution. Closer Taylor Rogers also threw two perfect innings for his first two saves in a Padres uniform after he was acquired at the end of spring training.

Complete Rankings

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    Mike Carlson/Associated Press

    Complete Rankings

    1. San Diego Padres
    2. Tampa Bay Rays
    3. Houston Astros
    4. Toronto Blue Jays
    5. Philadelphia Phillies
    6. Colorado Rockies
    7. Chicago White Sox
    8. St. Louis Cardinals
    9. Chicago Cubs
    10. New York Mets
    11. New York Yankees
    12. San Francisco Giants
    13. Seattle Mariners
    14. Cincinnati Reds
    15. Cleveland Guardians
    16. Kansas City Royals
    17. Minnesota Twins
    18. Detroit Tigers
    19. Oakland Athletics
    20. Atlanta Braves
    21. Los Angeles Angels
    22. Washington Nationals
    23. Los Angeles Dodgers
    24. Pittsburgh Pirates
    25. Milwaukee Brewers
    26. Boston Red Sox
    27. Miami Marlins
    28. Texas Rangers
    29. Arizona Diamondbacks
    30. Baltimore Orioles

Highlight of the Week: Seth Beer Hits Walk-Off on Opening Day

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    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Few players in baseball benefited more from the implementation of the universal designated hitter than Arizona Diamondbacks rookie Seth Beer.

    A bat-only player who hit .292/.392/.509 in three minor league seasons, he suddenly had a path to playing time, and he was in the D-backs' Opening Day lineup as the starting DH and No. 7 hitter.

    He stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and nobody out in the bottom of the ninth inning, and after a wild pitch from San Diego Padres reliever Craig Stammen cut the deficit in half, he crushed a three-home, walk-off home run to start the year off with a bang.

    Not only was it Opening Day, but it was also National Beer Day, making it all the more appropriate that he was the one to deliver the big hit.

    According to Steve Gilbert of MLB.com, Beer became the first rookie in MLB history to hit a walk-off home run with his team trailing on Opening Day.

    "It was a surreal feeling," Beer told reporters. "It's still a dream. It's still really hard to put into words. I just kind of blacked out."

    If you're looking for a dark-horse pick in the NL Rookie of the Year race, look no further than the 6'3", 213-pound slugger who has shown middle-of-the-order run-producer upside since his days at Clemson.

Team of the Week

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    Sean Manaea
    Sean ManaeaRoss D. Franklin/Associated Press

    C Danny Jansen, TOR
    (4-for-7, 2 HR, 2 RBI)

    1B Matt Olson, ATL
    (8-for-14, 2 2B, HR, RBI)

    2B Jeff McNeil, NYM
    (7-for-16, HR, 3 RBI)

    3B Nolan Arenado, STL
    (6-for-12, 3 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI)

    SS Jeremy Pena, HOU
    (6-for-16, 2 2B, HR, RBI)

    OF Steven Kwan, CLE
    (8-for-10, 2 2B)

    OF Mark Canha, NYM
    (7-for-10, 2 RBI)

    OF Jurickson Profar, SD
    (4-for-10, 2 HR, 6 RBI)

    DH Giancarlo Stanton, NYY
    (5-for-13, 2 HR, 4 RBI)

    SP Sean Manaea, SD
    (1 GS, W, 7.0 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K)

    SP Kyle Gibson, PHI
    (1 GS, W, 7.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 10 K)

    SP Framber Valdez, HOU
    (1 GS, W, 6.2 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K)

    SP Yu Darvish, SD
    (1 GS, ND, 6.0 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 4 BB, 3 K)

    SP Robbie Ray, SEA
    (1 GS, W, 7.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 4 BB, 5 K)

    RP Jordan Romano, TOR
    (2 G, 2/2 SV, 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K)

Way-Too-Early Award Rankings

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    Nolan Arenado
    Nolan ArenadoJeff Roberson/Associated Press

    AL MVP

    1. Alex Bregman, HOU
    2. Steven Kwan, CLE
    3. Anthony Rizzo, NYY

        

    NL MVP

    1. Nolan Arenado, STL
    2. Matt Olson, ATL
    3. Mark Canha, NYM

         

    AL Cy Young

    1. Framber Valdez, HOU
    2. Robbie Ray, SEA
    3. Brad Keller, KC

         

    NL Cy Young

    1. Sean Manaea, SD
    2. Kyle Gibson, PHI
    3. Yu Darvish, SD

         

    AL Rookie of the Year

    1. Steven Kwan, CLE
    2. Jeremy Pena, HOU
    3. Daulton Jefferies, OAK

          

    NL Rookie of the Year

    1. Seiya Suzuki, CHC
    2. Hunter Greene, CIN
    3. Seth Beer, ARI

         

    Stats courtesy of MLB.com and Baseball Reference unless otherwise noted.

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