By Kenny Howell
A little shifting at the top of the MLB Power Rankings this week. Each team will be followed by their record and what they were last week.
1. St. Louis Cardinals (49-31) (1) - The Cardinals are in a bit of a slump by their standards, winning just four out of their last 10, and the Pirates have surged past them, but they still have been the most consistent team.
2. Atlanta Braves (47-34) (4) - The Braves has the best pitching staff in baseball and are top five in defense.
3. Oakland Athletics (47-35) (3) - The A's have dropped a half game behind the Rangers, but are top 5 in pitching and defense. Just outside the top 10 at the plate.
4. Pittsburgh Pirates (50-30) (7) - The Pirates are on a tear, winning eight in a row, and taking over the NL Central. How long will it last with below average bats? Top five in pitching and the best defense in baseball.
5. Cincinnati Reds (46-35) (2) - The Reds are slipping behind the pack in the NL Central, but still might have the most talent.
6. Texas Rangers (47-34) (6) - The Rangers are back to playing well, winning eight of their last 10.
7. Detroit Tigers (43-36) (5) - The Tigers drop a little after going just 4-6 in their last 10.
8. Baltimore Orioles (46-36) (8) - The Orioles are 2.5 behind the Red Sox, but have won three in a row, including stomping the Yankees Saturday.
9. Boston Red Sox (49-34) (10) - Red Sox bats are tops in the bigs, but pitching and defense are near the bottom.
10. Tampa Bay Rays (42-39) (11) - The Rays have a little work to do to get back into the race, but are improving.
11. Arizona Diamondbacks (42-38) (9) - The steady Dbacks are playing average right now, splitting their last 10 games.
12. Cleveland Indians (43-38) (16) - Indians making a bit of a run, and creeping up on the division leading Tigers.
13. Toronto Blue Jays (40-40) (13) - After going on the big winning streak, they have a cooled a bit, but still are in good position to make a move.
14. Colorado Rockies (41-41) (14) - The Rockies are still in good shape in the NL West.
15. Washington Nationals (40-40) (18) - Nationals still in good shape without Bryce Harper.
16. New York Yankees (42-38) (15) - Yankees are dropping a bit in the AL East, losing seven of their last 10.
17. San Diego Padres (40-41) (17) - The Padres are also keeping pace in the NL West.
18. Philadelphia Phillies (39-43) (22) - The Phillies are in the middle of the pack in just about every statistical category.
19. Chicago Cubs (34-45) (20) - Cubs continue to play .500 baseball over the last several weeks. Need to be better to make up for bad start.
20. San Francisco Giants (38-42) (12) - What has happened to the world champions? They have now lost six in a row.
21. Kansas City Royals (37-41) (19) - The Royals have lost seven of their last 10.
22. Los Angeles Angels (38-43) (24) - The Angels are surging a bit, winning five in a row.
23. Seattle Mariners (35-46) (25) - The Mariners pitching staff is back in the top 10, but they are still not very good.
24. Milwaukee Brewers (32-47) (21) - The Brewers are losers of four in a row.
25. Chicago White Sox (32-46) (23) - White Sox have also lost four in a row.
26. Los Angeles Dodgers (37-43) (26) - The Dodgers have been fairly well, winning seven of their last 10.
27. New York Mets (33-44) (29) - The Mets are playing decent ball, winning six of their last 10.
28. Miami Marlins (28-51) (28) - Marlins have been playing fairly well too, also winning six of their last 10.
29. Minnesota Twins (36-41) (27) - Twins are second to last in pitching and defense.
30. Houston Astros (30-51) (30) - The Astros are last in pitching and defense.