10) MLB Power Rankings: Cleveland Guardians
The Cleveland Guardians didn’t make much of an attempt to build themselves up in the offseason nor did they have major trade deadline moves. Playing against logic, they appear to have momentum going their way in the American League Central race.
Jose Ramirez has been his usual impressive self but the Guardians are getting plenty of help from two infielders they acquired for Francisco Lindor; Andres Gimenez and Amed Rosario. With a good yet somewhat shallow rotation, a young closer they can trust in, and a few other good pieces to help them win, the Guardians are a good pick to win the division if only because the other contenders are falling.
9) MLB Power Rankings: Toronto Blue Jays
The trade deadline was a little bit of a letdown for the Toronto Blue Jays. Luckily, they had all of the tools needed to make a run. Additions of Whit Merrifield and others could pay off down the line. Lately, it’s mainstays like Vladimir Guerrero Jr. ensuring they go far.
If there is a doubt anyone should have left in the Blue Jays it’s the rotation. Can Alek Manoah continue his successful regular season into October? The Blue Jays can overcome any questions about their pitching staff by out-slugging the opponent. They should be good. Go seal a wild card.
8) MLB Power Rankings: Philadelphia Phillies
The Philadelphia Phillies have fluctuated in the MLB Power Rankings plenty this season. The change they needed was in the manager’s seat. Firing Joe Girardi kicked off a much better summer for a team short on the defensive fundamentals but spectacular in other ways.
The Phillies are known for swatting home runs yet that’s not what could help them go far. They actually have a good bullpen. Their starting rotation is right there with everyone else in a short series. Don’t get fooled into thinking this is the same old Phillies club from previous years. Plus, with Bryce Harper on the way back, expect them to do even more damage in the final weeks.
7) MLB Power Rankings: Seattle Mariners
It’s hard to believe we’re in late August and the Seattle Mariners are looking as impressive as they do. Some unexpectedly good years at the plate and a pitching staff that can compete with anyone is the reason why they should be looked at with such high regard.
There isn’t one singular player carrying the Mariners although the addition of Luis Castillo at the trade deadline could be remembered as the needed spark. The Mariners never had a realistic shot at a division title this year. Thank goodness they have three wild card spots to choose from.
6) MLB Power Rankings: New York Yankees
What happened to the New York Yankees? They’re looking less strong these days. Someone should check in on them and see if everything is all right.
Fortunately, the Yankees built up a strong enough lead in the American League East that they don’t need to worry about missing the playoffs entirely. They’re good, just not World Series-favorite good. They’ve fallen, been cracked, and now we wait to see how much yolk spills out.