By Joe Lemire
May 27, 2010
MLB Power Rankings
11 Texas Rangers
Last Week: 12
The Rangers are first in the AL West standings, but last in the accounting books. The team's sale, to a group led by Chuck Greenberg and team president Nolan Ryan, has been mired in legal obstacles for months, and this week the current ownership filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy to help expedite the process. The biggest revelation of the week came from the list of the club's unsecured creditors. No. 1 on that list? Who else but Alex Rodriguez, who is still owed $24.9 million in deferred payments. As if the Rangers needed a reminder as to why they're struggling.
12 Toronto Blue Jays
Last Week: 11
There seems to be charmed power emanating from the Rogers Centre third-base bag. Jose Bautista started his home run barrage (now at 15) playing the position while Edwin Encarnacion was hurt. Encarnacion returned to action on May 18 and has slugged seven home runs in his first seven games back, including three at Arizona on Friday. All together, the Blue Jays' third basemen have hit 17 home runs, the most by any major league team at any one position.
13 San Francisco Giants
Last Week: 8
While Giants fans have been clamoring for catching prospect Buster Posey and his prolific bat to be promoted for a while -- he's got a .343/.437/.536 batting line and six home runs -- they're not the only one. Posey is a native of Leesburg, Ga., and the Albany (Ga.) Herald, just 12 miles south, has its own Posey Watch -- updated daily.
14 Colorado Rockies
Last Week: 18
At the end of day, major league baseball is just a kid's game, not so different from the sport played in backyards and local parks all across the country. And often there would come a time when someone would have to retrieve an errantly thrown ball or a dropped glove by hopping the neighbor's fence. Well, that's essentially what Rockies centerfield Dexter Fowler did over the weekend. While trying to snag a ball hit high off the wall in Kansas City, he lost his glove over the outfield fence and then had to hop the eight-foot wall to get it back.
15 Oakland Athletics
Last Week: 15
If only the A's and Giants had wagered San Jose on their Bay Area showdown over the weekend. The A's are hoping to build their new ballpark in San Jose -- the city at the southern tip of the Bay that's roughly equidistant between Oakland and San Francisco -- but San Jose is officially considered part of the Giants' domain. The easy fix to the territorial dispute would have been to award San Jose to the winner of last weekend's interleague series. Oakland swept.
16 Florida Marlins
Last Week: 14
Bono's bad back isn't just bad news for U2 fans. The Marlins are one of several teams with a long road trip built into this year's schedule to accommodate the construction of the elaborate staging needed for U2's 360 Degrees Tour. (Florida doesn't play in Miami from June 28 until July 16.) But now the concert has been postponed a year after Bono recently had emergency back surgery. The tour has been rescheduled for next summer, meaning the Marlins (and others) will have a similarly long road trip in 2011, too.
17 Atlanta Braves
Last Week: 17
Atlanta is the early leader for most dramatic comeback win. After trailing the Reds 9-3 in the ninth inning, the Braves scored seven in the bottom of the ninth, capped by a walk-off grand slam from 30-year-old rookie Brooks Conrad. Braves broadcaster Joe Simpson, incidentally, is the early leader for best celebratory line of the young season. The Oklahoma native called out, "I've seen two rodeos and three goat-ropings, but I've never seen anything like that."
18 Washington Nationals
Last Week: 16
Stephen Strasburg blah blah blah Stephen Strasburg blah blah blah Stephen Strasburg blah blah blah Stephen Strasburg blah blah blah Stephen Strasburg blah blah blah Stephen Strasburg blah blah blah Stephen Strasburg blah blah blah Stephen Strasburg. Oh, and the Nationals are still a game above .500.
19 New York Mets
Last Week: 19
We know Jose Reyes is fast, and it was confirmed again Tuesday night. His first-inning single was the 1,000th hit of his career, which he accomplished in his 833rd game, faster than any Met had ever done. And of course he showed his traditional speed that night, adding a triple and two stolen bases.
20 Chicago Cubs
Last Week: 20
"You're only fat when you're losing." That was the quote attributed to an anonymous general manager in reference to Cubs starter Carlos Silva (on Baseball Tonight). Silva's weight had always been an issue during middling seasons in Minnesota and Seattle, but now the 250-pounder is 6-0 with a 3.52 ERA and doing just fine.
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