MLB Power Rankings: Rangers losing grip, Phillies making late charge

MLB Power Rankings: Rangers losing grip, Phillies making late charge

Welcome to the seventh edition of theScore’s MLB Power Rankings for the 2023 season. The last edition ran Aug. 21, while the next edition will be published Sept. 18.

1. Atlanta Braves

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

90-46
8-2
+239
1 (-)

The Braves continued their season-long dominance by taking three of four from the Dodgers. Atlanta has clubbed 259 homers through 136 games and sits 48 home runs back from equaling the 2019 Twins’ record of 307 dingers. The Braves have seven players with 20-plus homers this year, and four with at least 30. Meanwhile, Ronald Acuña Jr. became the first player in MLB history to record a 30-homer, 60-stolen base season.

2. Los Angeles Dodgers

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

84-52
6-4
+166
2 (-)

Mookie Betts is doing whatever he can to wrestle the MVP from Acuña. The star outfielder hit .455/.516/.839 with 11 home runs, 10 doubles, 30 RBIs, and 3.0 fWAR over 28 games in August. He’s been almost impossible to get out, recording a hit in 34 of his last 38 games. Betts and teammate Freddie Freeman sit first and third in the NL in OPS, respectively.

3. Baltimore Orioles

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

85-51
7-3
+101
3 (-)

Grayson Rodriguez looks like a different pitcher since being recalled from the minors in mid-July. He owns a 2.83 ERA and 41 strikeouts across 47 2/3 innings while allowing just two home runs. That’s quite an improvement over the 7.35 ERA and 13 homers he allowed across 45 1/3 frames prior to his demotion. Baltimore will hope Rodriguez can carry these performances into October.

4. Tampa Bay Rays

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

83-54
7-3
+188
5 (+1)

The Rays handing Zach Eflin a three-year, $40-million deal in December caught everyone off guard, but we should’ve known better than to doubt this front office. The right-hander owns a 3.40 ERA, 151 strikeouts, and an MLB-best 1.02 WHIP through 26 starts. He also leads the team in innings pitched, strikeouts, and wins.

5. Seattle Mariners

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

77-59
6-4
+105
6 (+1)

Julio Rodríguez has been the catalyst for the Mariners’ charge up the standings, but he hasn’t done it alone. Teoscar Hernández is putting together one of his signature hot streaks. The outfielder has six homers, 18 RBIs, and a 1.101 OPS over his last 13 games. Logan Gilbert has also found another gear, posting a 1.83 ERA with 19 strikeouts over his last three starts.

6. Philadelphia Phillies

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

75-61
6-4
+71
9 (+3)

Trea Turner just needed some love. The Phillies shortstop has been on an absolute tear since getting cheered by the home fans. He’s homered six times in his last six games and has raised his season OPS from .657 to .757 over the last month. Bryce Harper is also heating up, slashing .367/.480/.850 with eight homers over his last 16 games. Philadelphia has all the ingredients to make another deep postseason run.

7. Houston Astros

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

77-61
5-5
+93
7 (-)

Yordan Álvarez remains MLB’s most under-appreciated star. The slugger is putting together another dominant season, hitting .291/.400/.564 with 23 homers in just 90 games. He seems like a lock to finish a third straight campaign with at least 30 homers. Since breaking into the majors in 2019, Álvarez ranks third among qualified hitters with a .972 OPS behind only Mike Trout and Aaron Judge.

8. Milwaukee Brewers

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

76-60
7-3
+23
11 (+3)

Milwaukee’s pitching, once again a strength, should make the team a formidable postseason foe. The club owns the fourth-lowest ERA and second-lowest WHIP in the majors over the last month. Freddy Peralta has allowed just four runs over his last 24 innings while striking out a staggering 39 batters. Brandon Woodruff has been equally nasty since coming off the injured list last month, striking out 37 over 28 2/3 innings.

9. Texas Rangers

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

76-60
4-6
+168
4 (-5)

Texas is falling apart at the wrong time. After holding first place in the AL West for 150 days this season and a 7.5-game lead over the Mariners on Aug. 15, the Rangers now find themselves one game back of their division rivals. Texas relievers have blown 11 saves since the trade deadline – the second-worst mark in MLB.

10. Chicago Cubs

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

73-64
6-4
+87
12 (+2)

The Cubs’ outfield is carrying the offensive load. Cody Bellinger, Ian Happ, and Seiya Suzuki have combined for nine home runs and 44 RBIs over the last 15 games, while the rest of the lineup combined has driven in just 32 runs. The rotation has also done its part, especially in Marcus Stroman’s absence. Kyle Hendricks is putting together his best season in three years and has been especially good of late, posting a 2.48 ERA over his last five outings.

11. Toronto Blue Jays

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

75-62
5-5
+69
8 (-3)

Toronto went just 5-4 during a crucial stretch against Cleveland, Washington and Colorado. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. just seems out of whack, and it could be a case of trying to do too much. The 24-year-old is hitting .265/.330/.402 over his last 25 games. That isn’t necessarily bad, but with just eight extra-base hits, we’re still left wanting more from one of the game’s young stars. The lack of power has been the biggest surprise, as Guerrero is on pace to post the second-lowest OPS (.780) of his career.

12. Minnesota Twins

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

71-66
6-4
+51
17 (+5)

Carlos Correa needs to get it going at the plate. The 28-year-old is on pace for the worst offensive season of his career. Correa has particularly struggled over the past few weeks, hitting just .212 with a .576 OPS over the last 13 games. Royce Lewis’ performance has helped compensate for Correa’s struggles. Lewis hit grand slams in consecutive games and is showcasing the prodigious talent that was a big factor in the Twins selecting him first overall in 2017.

13. Boston Red Sox

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

71-66
4-6
+24
10 (-3)

The Red Sox just haven’t got enough from their starting pitching. The team, which went 13-15 in August, ranks 28th in the majors in rotation innings pitched ahead of only the A’s and Giants. Brayan Bello leads the club with 131 frames pitched, and he’s the only starter on the club to throw more than 115 innings. Luckily, Triston Casas appears to be a major piece of the future. The rookie owns a 1.095 OPS since the All-Star break, the third-highest mark in the majors behind Mookie Betts and Shohei Ohtani.

14. Arizona Diamondbacks

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

70-67
4-6
-26
15 (+1)

It’s been a whirlwind of late in Arizona. The Diamondbacks took consecutive series over Texas and Cincinnati before getting crushed in a three-game sweep at the hands of the Dodgers in Los Angeles. After a frigid stretch at the plate, All-Star outfielder Corbin Carroll has found his stride of late. The NL Rookie of the Year favorite is hitting .375 with a 1.197 OPS in his last 12 games.

15. San Francisco Giants

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

70-67
4-6
-5
13 (-2)

It’s been a remarkable year for Wilmer Flores. He leads the club with a career-high 20 home runs and .880 OPS in 104 games after hitting 19 homers last season in 151 games. Kyle Harrison’s start to his MLB career has been a wild ride. He struck out 11 over 6 1/3 shutout innings against the Reds in his second career start, although he followed that up by allowing six runs over 5 2/3 frames against the Padres.

16. Cincinnati Reds

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

71-68
4-6
-37
14 (-2)

The Reds added some offensive reinforcements, claiming Harrison Bader and Hunter Renfroe off waivers, and it’s already paying off. Renfroe drove in the winning run Saturday in a much-needed victory. Cincinnati desperately needs exciting rookie Elly De La Cruz to rediscover his stroke at the plate. He’s slumped over the past two weeks, hitting just .161 with a .502 OPS, one home run, and 28 strikeouts during that span.

17. New York Yankees

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

68-69
7-3
-5
21 (+4)

The Yankees enter September playing for next year and beyond as the team will miss the postseason for the first time since 2016. That means it’s Baby Bomber time, and the first impression couldn’t have been better. Jasson Domínguez homered off Justin Verlander with his first swing in the majors, helping New York sweep Houston. It’s not just the youngsters, though, as Aaron Judge continues his monster season. He’s hit 31 homers in just 83 games.

18. Miami Marlins

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

70-67
5-5
-44
16 (-2)

If the Marlins make the postseason, they can thank the Nationals. Miami finished 11-2 against Washington this season, including a 7-0 record in D.C. Meanwhile, Luis Arráez is proving just how hard it is to bat .400 over a full season. The Marlins infielder has seen his average drop to .356 after it stood at .401 on June 24.

19. Cleveland Guardians

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

66-71
6-4
-11
20 (+1)

The Guardians opted to not do anything at the trade deadline, but they did shake things up last week by landing Lucas Giolito, Matt Moore, and Reynaldo López off waivers from the Angels. Cleveland will hope those pickups will have as big an impact as recent additions Kole Calhoun and Ramón Laureano. The two outfielders have 14 extra-base hits and 26 RBIs in a combined 45 games since joining the club.

20. San Diego Padres

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

65-73
4-6
+62
18 (-2)

The only thing left to cheer for in San Diego is Blake Snell’s pursuit of a second Cy Young award. The left-hander, who’s set to become a free agent this winter, owns an MLB-best 2.50 ERA across 155 innings to go with 201 strikeouts. Snell would be the seventh pitcher to win the award in both leagues after claiming the 2018 AL Cy Young.

21. New York Mets

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

63-74
4-6
-37
22 (+1)

It’s DJ Stewart’s team now. The 29-year-old has been one of the few bright spots in Queens this season with his play down the stretch. Signed to a minor-league contract in February and called up to the majors in July, Stewart is hitting .265/.348/.622 with 10 home runs and 18 RBIs in 39 games. He owns a 1.059 OPS over his last 12 games.

22. Washington Nationals

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

62-76
3-7
-118
23 (+1)

The Nationals have been one of baseball’s most pleasant surprises since the All-Star break. They aren’t loaded with household names but have a scrappy lineup that consistently puts pressure on opposing pitchers. The Juan Soto trade already looks like a win. Shortstop C.J. Abrams and left-hander Mackenzie Gore have already provided value with a number of impressive prospects producing in the minors. The future is looking bright.

23. Los Angeles Angels

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

64-73
3-7
-58
19 (-4)

The Angels went 8-19 with a minus-74 run differential in August despite being buyers at the trade deadline. They ended up putting six players on waivers, including recent acquisitions Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo López, and Randal Grichuk. Los Angeles’ decision to ship out its top two prospects in the Giolito deal just adds another chapter to a complete mismanagement from the front office.

24. Pittsburgh Pirates

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

63-74
6-4
-84
26 (+2)

The Pirates are set to miss the postseason for an eighth straight season, but they’re also on pace to finish with their highest winning percentage in five years and have already surpassed last season’s win total. In order to take the next step, they’ll need to play better within their division. Pittsburgh is 19-25 versus the NL Central this season, including a 4-16 mark against the Cubs and Brewers.

25. Detroit Tigers

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

63-74
5-5
-111
25 (-)

Kerry Freakin’ Carpenter. The Tigers’ 19th round pick in 2019 has been a revelation this season and could be a major piece of the puzzle moving forward. Carpenter is hitting .365/.426/.673 with nine home runs and 21 RBIs over the last 30 days. Spencer Torkelson is also starting to show why Detroit used the No. 1 pick on him in 2020. He owns a .846 OPS and 13 homers in 48 games since the All-Star break.

26. St. Louis Cardinals

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

59-78
4-6
-77
24 (-2)

Adam Wainwright is running out of time to reach 200 wins. The 42-year-old has been stuck on 198 since June 17 and hasn’t won a game over his last 10 starts. It’s been a miserable season for St. Louis and Wainwright. He’s 3-10 with a career-worst 8.10 ERA across 18 outings, and there won’t be many more opportunities. Hopefully, the Cardinals’ decision to push his most recent start back for more rest will pay off.

27. Chicago White Sox

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

53-84
3-7
-147
27 (-)

The White Sox made a change in the front office, promoting Chris Getz to general manager. Owner Jerry Reinsdorf declared the season “the worst I’ve ever suffered” and said he’d be “pissed” if he were a fan. There’ll likely be plenty of turnover this offseason with Getz stating that no one is untouchable. However, don’t expect Shohei Ohtani on the South Side as Reinsdorf said the team won’t be making an offer.

28. Colorado Rockies

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

50-86
2-8
-202
28 (-)

The Rockies are expecting Kris Bryant to come off the IL before the season ends, but it’s been another disappointing year for the team’s $182-million man. Bryant hasn’t played since July 22 and has appeared in just 107 of Colorado’s 298 games (36%) since signing his deal.

29. Oakland Athletics

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

42-95
6-4
-296
30 (+1)

The A’s are closing in on a second straight 100-plus-loss season, but this group still has some wiggle room to avoid becoming the worst team in franchise history. The Philadelphia Athletics lost 117 of 154 (.235) games in 1916. Oakland will need to go just 4-21 in the final month to avoid equalling that dubious record, so the team should be safe.

30. Kansas City Royals

Record
Last 10
RD
Previous rank (change)

42-96
2-8
-189
29 (-1)

While most of the attention in Kansas City has surrounded Bobby Witt Jr.’s incredible season, there’s been something special brewing on the pitching staff. Cole Ragans, acquired from the Rangers in the Aroldis Chapman deal, owns a 1.73 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, and 56 strikeouts across 41 2/3 innings with the Royals.

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