GW’s MLB West Power Rankings (Week 8)
1. Rangers (1): With a steadily-increasing lead in the AL West, you have to wonder why skipper Ron Washington would allow any of his starting pitchers, especially ace right-hander Yu Darvish, to throw 130 pitches in a game.
2. Diamondbacks (3): No truth to the rumor that right-hander Brandon McCarthy’s first win for the Snakes will have an asterisk because it came against the woebegone Marlins.
3. Giants (2): Until the reigning World Series champs get their sporadic starting rotation in order, there will be tough sledding towards capturing another division title.
4. Rockies (4): After all these years (eight and counting) it still boggles the mind as to how shortstop Troy Tulowitzki fell into the Rockies’ lap during the ’05 First-Year Player Draft when the Mariners surprised everyone by taking right-hander pitcher Brandon Morrow in the first round.
5. Athletics (6): Wonder what the chances are that the A’s will look past a three-game series against the Rangers in Arlington starting on Monday and lick their lips looking ahead to facing the Astros in Houston beginning on Friday.
6. Mariners (5): Winning a series at Yankee Stadium for the first time in several seasons quieted some of the doubters who don’t think they will live long enough to see the team reach the playoffs again, let alone play in a World Series.
7. Angels (7): All you need to know about the biggest underachievers in the AL West this season is this: Josh Hamilton needed a day to “recharge” his motor, which has been sputtering all season so far – .214 average, 5 home runs and 13 RBIs in his first 168 at-bats.
8. Padres (9): Perhaps someone should check the water in Peoria, where the Pads and Mariners share the spring training complex. Not even one player from either team with at least 40 at-bats is hitting .300.
9. Dodgers (8): There is so much parity in the NL West that the most underachieving team in the division is playing lousy, has a lousy record and were still just seven games out of first place after the first 41 games.
10 Astros (10): The biggest news to come out of Houston this baseball season just might be the hiring of Reid Ryan, Nolan’s son, as the struggling franchise’s president. They become the first father-son presidents of MLB teams at the same time in MLB history.
(Last week’s ranking in parenthesis)