10) MLB Power Rankings: Seattle Mariners
The Seattle Mariners haven’t been so hot lately. The good news is they have breathing room. They may hobble into the postseason. They may also heat up at any moment and become a sleeper club to take down someone like the Houston Astros.
The Mariners are building beyond the 2022 season with a contract extension handed to Luis Castillo. They’re going for it in 2022 but also prepared to use whatever experiences they do gain this season as a building block for next year.
9) MLB Power Rankings: Tampa Bay Rays
The three wild card teams in the American League are about even. Maybe a tad better than the Mariners are the moment, we find the Tampa Bay Rays. Still a somewhat curious contender for the World Series, they’re a unique threat no one wants to mess with.
The key for the Rays remains run prevention. They can score runs at an okay rate but it’s the handling of the pitching staff that has carried them all year. This recipe hasn’t led to them winning a championship in the past. Will 2022 finally be the year when it does?
8) MLB Power Rankings: Toronto Blue Jays
The Toronto Blue Jays will always feel like a sleeping giant in the American League. Bound to take a wild card spot, questions remain about their pitching staff.
It’s hard to believe that this team fired its manager earlier in the year and will make the postseason with such ease. The roster looks fantastic and if there’s a club that might hit its way to a championship, the Blue Jays are the ones to place your bet on.
7) MLB Power Rankings: Cleveland Guardians
A team nobody saw coming, the Cleveland Guardians took advantage of a bad division. The White Sox never did much this year. The Twins collapsed. In came the Guardians to seize their opportunity. While they might not have the most threatening lineup, they have three very good starters and one of the best closers in the game.
Cleveland seems built to go far in the postseason and do things in a similar style as the Rays. In fact, the Guardians could run circles around the Rays simply because they have Jose Ramirez in the lineup. They have a long road ahead. However, this underdog team looks prepared to spoil some big-budget club’s dreams of a championship.
6) MLB Power Rankings: Atlanta Braves
This week we drop the Atlanta Braves a few spots. It’s not as much because of any losses they may have suffered on the field. Losing Spencer Strider to the IL definitely hurt their chances to capture the division. Could it be that Atlanta exhausts itself too much late in the year fighting for a better seed?
Braves fans aren’t giving up any hope of them repeating as champions. Even if no team has done so in more than two decades, every fan sees how good they can be. It’s a race to the finish line for Atlanta. The lack of security as to whether or not they’ll have to play a wild card round or not can weigh heavily. All they’ve done is win games and even that hasn’t been enough.