Seattle Mariners

major league rankings

1. Oakland Athletics (1): A’s treading water while double-play combination of Jed Lawrie and Nick Punto nurse aches and pains.

2. Los Angeles Angels (2): Since rolling into the All-Star break with the highest-scoring offense in the big leagues, Angels’ bats have gone cold.

3. Los Angeles Dodgers (3): Despite spate of pitching injuries, Dodgers keep winning.

4. Baltimore Orioles (4): In their seven games against the Mariners this season, Orioles scored 18 runs — and won five.

5. Washington Nationals (7): Outfielder Jayson Werth was arrested last week for driving faster than Stephen Starsburg’s fastest fastball.

6. Kansas City Royals (11): The story of Lee Sung-woo, the Royals’ good-luck charm from Korea, is the stuff of a can’t-miss movie script.

7. Seattle Mariners (13): Next nine games are against last-place opponents (Phils, Red Sox, Rangers) who began weekend with a collective record of 145-207.

8. Milwaukee Brewers (6): Of the 18 outs pitcher Mike Fiers recorded Thursday against the Cubs, 14 were strikeouts.

9. Detroit Tigers (5): Tigers in the hunt for 27-year-old Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo, who has drawn comparisons to Yanks’ Jacoby Ellsbury.

10. St. Louis Cardinals (10): Manager Mike Matheny on brief benching of uber-prospect Oscar Taveras: “He’s got a lot to learn.”

11. San Francisco Giants (8): RIP Robin Williams, who loved baseball in general, and the Giants in particular.

12. Pittsburgh Pirates (12): Savvy reliever John Axford, acquired from Cleveland off the waiver wire, a good example of post-trade-deadline possibilities.

13. Toronto Blue Jays (9): If Jays don’t qualify for the playoffs, they’ll look back at Safeco Field sweeping last week as turning point.

14. New York Yankees (14): Michael Pineda is back, but can he stay healthy? The former M’s All-Star has made five starts in three years.

15. Cleveland Indians (17): If Felix Hernandez weren’t in the way, curveball master Corey Kluber would be AL Cy Young favorite.

16. Miami Marlins (18): Improved Marlins’ attainment of respectability could sway some MVP votes to Giancarlo Stanton.

17. Atlanta Braves (18): Braves hoping move of Jason Heyward to leadoff spot will replicate spark it did last season.

18. Cincinnati Reds (15): Reds lead baseball in a statistic that suggests a playoff push will be problematic: one-run defeats.

19. Tampa Bay Rays (19): They’re still on the fringe of contention, and Wil Myers, last season’s AL Rookie of the Year, appears ready to play after missing 10 weeks with a broken wrist.

20. San Diego Padres (23): New GM A.J. Preller, who hasn’t played baseball since high school, is Padres’ most intriguing star on the rise.

21. New York Mets (21): Front office to ace Matt Harvey, eager to pitch after smooth rehab from Tommy John surgery: Forget about late-season comeback, and focus on ’15.

22. Minnesota Twins (22): They didn’t get much in return, but by unloading veterans Josh Willingham and Kevin Correia, Twins saved some money and cleared roster spots for kids.

23. Chicago White Sox (20): Worst loss of week for chairman Jerry Reinsdorf, a hard-line proponent of a salary cap, was owners’ selection of Rob Manfred as next commissioner.

24. Philadelphia Phillies (24): M’s couldn’t have picked a better time for a three-game road series against deflated, dispirited Phils.

25. Chicago Cubs (25): Javier Baez’s first Wrigley Field homer landed on Waveland Ave. There will be others.

26. Arizona Diamondbacks (26): Rookie right-hander Chase Anderson (7-4, 3.16 ERA) one of few pleasant developments of lost-cause season.

27. Boston Red Sox (27): Don’t be surprised if pitcher Jon Lester returns to Sox next season as free agent.

28. Houston Astros (28): Rookie slugger George Springer, hurt again with a quad strain, has hit 20 homers in 78 games.

29. Texas Rangers (30): There’s a bright side to early elimination: Rangers can give Yu Darvish all the time he needs to rest his sore right elbow.

30. Colorado Rockies (29): Rox should consider moving perpetually injured shortstop Troy Tulowitzki to first base in 2015.

john.mcgrath

@thenewstribune.com

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