John McGrath

John McGrath’s MLB Power Rankings

1. Washington Nationals (3, last week): During recent 9-1 road trip, Nats averaged 7.8 runs per game.

2. Baltimore Orioles (2): O’s trusting May climate change will warm bats of cold sluggers.

3. Houston Astros (1): When George Springer and Jose Altuve were dealing with minor injuries last week, manager A.J. Hinch put together a makeshift lineup that underscored his patient approach to long season.

4. Chicago Cubs (5): If general manager Theo Epstein ever gets bored with the baseball gig, he can always offer some roster-reconstruction ideas to Chicago’s pro football team.

5. New York Yankees (8): In his last start, against Red Sox, Masahiro Tanaka resembled Greg Maddux: a three-hit, 97-pitch shutout.

6. Cleveland Indians (7): Balanced Tribe slowly reasserting itself as AL’s best team.

7. Colorado Rockies (6): Manager Bud Black on Thursday blowout that extended the Rox losing streak to three games: “We definitely need to wash this one off.”

8. Arizona Diamondbacks (9): No obvious recuperation options for starting pitcher Shelby Miller, out indefinitely with torn ligament in right elbow.

9. Boston Red Sox (4): Chris Sale has been dominant, but paucity of run support translates into 1-2 record.

10. Chicago White Sox (19): Avisail Garcia, a .264 career hitter, began weekend leading AL with .373 batting average.

11. Detroit Tigers (13): Justin Verlander’s average fastball velocity against Mariners — 95.6 mph — his highest for an April outing since 2011.

12. Milwaukee Brewers (17): First month of Eric Thames’ reborn MLB career qualifying as historic.

13. Los Angeles Dodgers (10): Long-awaited season debut of Julio Urias, 20, encouraging indication he’ll hold onto permanent spot in rotation.

14. Philadelphia Phillies (29): Freddy Galvis, latest in a long, proud line of shortstops from Venezuela, provided spark for winning streak last week.

15. Miami Marlins (12): Manager Don Mattingly on slouched-shouldered look of his team during road trip: “I didn’t feel a lot of energy. We may have to do something differently in terms of fixing things.”

16. St. Louis Cardinals (24): With his homer against Jays, Matt Carpenter gave Cards their first walk-off grand slam since 2008.

17. Seattle Mariners (16): Regrouping in middle of seemingly calamitous road trip defines the word “resilience.”

18. Tampa Bay Rays (14): No. 1 overall selection of 2008 draft, shortstop Tim Beckham, finally showing why scouts were keen on him.

19. Oakland Athletics (15): Hot and cold A’s buoyed by return of starting pitcher Kendall Graveman from disabled list.

20. Kansas City Royals (18): Sluggish April could accelerate anticipated makeover of veteran-stocked core.

21. Cincinnati Reds (11): Offense is decent, but ineffective starting pitching forcing Reds to overcome early-inning deficits.

22. Los Angeles Angels (25): Three-game sweep of Oakland indicates Angels might surpass modest expectations.

23. Minnesota Twins (21): If Jorge Polanco continues to provide Gold Glove defense at shortstop, slap hits will be a bonus.

24. Texas Rangers (22): Slugger Joey Gallo doing his best to fill in at third base for Adrian Beltre, whose slow recovery from sore right calf muscle has been source of frustration.

25. New York Mets (20): Last thing injury-plagued Mets needed was Yoenis Cespedis suffering hamstring strain that put hot-hitting outfielder on disabled list.

26. Pittsburgh Pirates (26): Triumphant debut of Gift Ngoepe, first African-born player to reach majors, stuff of a Disney movie script.

27. San Francisco Giants (23): Rookie Christian Arroyo looking like fixture at third base.

28. Toronto Blue Jays (27): Jays in wrong division for lost-cause months.

29. Atlanta Braves (28): Hard to believe 285-pound pitcher Bartolo Colon, who turns 44 next month, is still rotation staple.

30. San Diego Padres (30): Jered “May Day” Weaver has allowed 10 homers over past five starts.

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