Beyond Golf — 10 June 2013 by Jim Street
GW MLB West Power Rankings (Week 11)

GW’s MLB West Power Rankings (Week 11)

1. Athletics (3): “Moneyball” continues to work like magic on the East Bay. That Athletics are ranked 19th in team batting average and 16th in slugging percentage, but are No. 6 in runs scored and on-base percentage. As for player payroll, they are 26th.

2. Diamondbacks (2): Kudos to the D-Backs for selecting Cory Hahn in the 34th round of the First-Year Player Draft on Saturday. Hahn, who wore No. 34 with the Arizona State Sun Devils, was partially paralyzed in 2011 while playing his third college game – suffering a spinal injury while sliding head-first into second base.

3. Rangers (1): After and impressive run of four consecutive weeks at the top of the GW Power Rankings, the Rangers cooled off considerably during the first week of June, tumbling to their lowest ranking since Week 4.

4. Giants (4): For the first time in his past three starts, Madison Bumgardner did not pitch down to the first three letters of his last name in a win over the division-leading Diamondbacks.

5. Rockies (5): The surprising Rockies will get a welcome shot in the arm this week when young Tyler Chatwood rejoins the rotation after a non-disabling triceps injury and veteran Roy Oswalt could be on the way back to the bigs soon.

6. Angels (6): After his first 236 at-bats for his new team, Josh Hamilton had the same amount of walks as he had RBIs – 18. The not-gonna-be-an-All-Star-this-season is the antithesis of the Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera, who has had more productive weeks than Hamilton has had months.

7. Padres (7): June has not been a good month for outfielder Chris Denorfia. At the end of May he looked to be the Padres’ best bet for All-Star representation. But is batting average has taken a huge hit during a 3-for-24 skid since June 2.

8. Dodgers (8): It’s not exactly Fernando-mania yet, but outfielder Yasiel Puig is taking MLB by storm. The 22-year-old rookie from Cuba, who signed a seven-year, $42 million contract last December, is to the Dodgers what Mike Trout was to the LA Angels of Orange County last season.

9. Mariners (9): Can’t blame the Mariners for looking ahead with some trepidation as their 10-game homestand comes to an end. Just as the Yankees leave town, the nemesis Astros arrive for a three-game series beginning on Monday night. The newest AL West member took two of there in an early season three-game set at Safeco Field.

10. Astros (10): Can’t blame the Astros for looking ahead to their…well, see above. The last-place team currently is on its hottest streak of the season – six wins in the past 11 games.

(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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