Beyond Golf — 15 April 2013 by Jim Street
GW MLB Power Rankings (week 3)

GW’s MLB West Power Rankings (Week 3)

1. Athletics (3): A nine-game winning streak following back-to-back losses to open the regular season has lifted the other Bay Area team into the top spot in the highly-acclaimed GW’s MLB West power rankings. Question is: how long will the A’s remain in the penthouse?

2. Giants (2): The reigning World Series champs, that other team in the Bay Area (the one with the MLB-quality stadium and fan support), is off to another great start and leading the division after the first 13 games.

3. Dodgers (1): Two wrongs don’t make a right. Just ask Zack (“I shouldn’t have said anything”) Greinke and Carlos (“I shouldn’t have done that charge- the-mound thing”) Quentin. That being said, it sure would have been nice if the plate umpire would have stepped in front of the irate batter before the charge  got three feet in front of home plate.

4. Rangers (6): Good news: Nolan Ryan is staying with the organization. Bad news: Left-hander Matt Harrison could be sidelined longer than expected. The first anti-inflammatory injection to promote the healing of his lower back did not get the positive results expected, so he took a second shot. Is it three-shots-and-you’re-out in baseball?

5. Diamondbacks (5): When it comes playing the division rival Dodgers, no one seems to be it quite as well as the D-Backs, who have won 12 of the past 15 games against the Bums. Wonder what Magic Johnson has to say about THAT!

6. Mariners (7): It’s early, but the bushy mustache skipper Eric Wedge cultivated last season is taking a back seat to the bushier Fu Manchu this year. Sorry, but the new look really is not a good look. There is too much hair, and way too much white hair.

7. Rockies (8): It’s refreshing to read that Todd Helton plans to finish his Hall of Fame career (if GW has anything to say about it) in the same place that it started: in the Mile High city that doesn’t have much to get high about anymore when it comes to baseball.

8. Astros (10): Phil Humber just might be the best pitcher in the AL West with a 0-3 record. His ERA (2.98) after three outings against new division rivals surely is worth at least one win. The Astros, meanwhile, will have played all AL West opponents as of Monday night, when they visit Oakland to play the first-place Athletics.

9. Angels (4): The title of “biggest underachievers” after the first two weeks of the regular season belongs to the Halos and things might be getting a bit heated in the chair veteran manager Mike Scioscia is sitting in these days. Scioscia and his team are just too good to be playing like this.

10: Padres (8): Let’s put it this way: If the Padres have an overall baseball IQ that Carlos Quentin seems to have (and he went to Stanford?), the team is in for a long, long season and you have to wonder if manager Buddy Black can keep his job.

(Last week’s ranking in parenthesis)

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Jim Street

Jim’s 40-year sportswriting career started with the San Jose Mercury-News in 1970 and ended on a full-time basis on October 31, 2010 following a 10-year stint with MLB.com. He grew up in Dorris, Calif., several long drives from the nearest golf course. His first tee shot was a week before being inducted into the Army in 1968. Upon his return from Vietnam, where he was a war correspondent for the 9th Infantry Division, Jim took up golf semi-seriously while working for the Mercury-News and covered numerous tournaments, including the U.S. Open in 1982, when Tom Watson made the shot of his life on the 17th hole at Pebble Beach. Jim also covered several Bing Crosby Pro-Am tournaments, the women’s U.S. Open, and other golfing events in the San Francisco area. He has a 17-handicap, never had a hole-in-one, although once he came within two inches of an ace, and witnessed the first round Ken Griffey Jr. ever played – at Arizona State during Spring Training in 1990. Pebble Beach Golf Links, the Kapalua Plantation Course, Pinehurst No. 2, Spyglass Hill, Winged Foot, Torrey Pines, Medinah, Chambers Bay, North Berwick in Scotland, and Princeville are among the courses he has had the pleasure of playing. Hitting the ball down the middle of the fairway is not a strong part of Jim’s game, but he is known (in his own mind) as the best putter not on tour. Most of Jim’s writing career was spent covering Major League baseball, a tenure that started with the Oakland Athletics, who won 101 games in 1971, and ended with the Seattle Mariners, who lost 101 games in 2010. Symmetry is a wonderful thing. He currently lives in Seattle and vacations in Arizona (and other warm climates) as much as possible.

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