Welcome to another edition of King’s Ranks! These are my rankings of MLB teams based off of how they are playing right now. I also talk about some issue or event that happened in the world of baseball over the past week.
This week I am going to talk about the incident in the Bronx. Fans threw trash at the Cleveland Guardians outfielders and then Myles Straw got into the face of those fans as well. It was just complete chaos.
Now I want to give credit to the Yankees players who quit celebrating to go try to calm down the fans. Big time props to Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton and the other Yankees that stopped celebrating and ran out to the outfield. It should have been a big celebration for the Yankees and now we have to talk about something else.
This is getting ridiculous. Every sports is having major issues with fans and I think people have lost their minds coming out of quarantine. Fans seem to feel invincible and they for the most part aren’t punished unless they go onto the field or court. That needs to change immediately.
I think now we need to start seeing fans banned. There are consequences to those actions. It honestly disgusts me that people even do these things and then just get to go home and even brag about it. We need to be better. We get the opportunity to get back to the stadiums and it is time to start making the most of it because right now it is absolutely embarrassing.
With all that being said, let’s now get into our new rankings of the MLB teams heading into the final week of April.
1. Los Angeles Dodgers (12-4) +1
This is the easiest call in the entire rankings. There are only two teams even in consideration but the Dodgers are dominating everyone that they are playing. Los Angeles has a record of 11-2 since that series loss to Colorado to start the season. Cody Bellinger looks to have figured out his struggles which somehow makes this lineup even better. They will travel to Arizona this week before hosting Detroit. Expect to see them in the top spot for a while.
2. New York Mets (13-5) +2
The Mets are the only team to have won every series that they have played in the 2022 season. And they have done it without Jacob deGrom. Everyone is pitching in whether it be Carlos Carrasco (1.47 ERA) or the resurgent Francisco Lindor (.294 AVG, 4 HR, 12 RBI) this is the team many expected to see last year. Taking three of four from the Giants proved this team is for real. Now they have a very tough week with three in St. Louis before returning home for three against the Phillies.
3. Toronto Blue Jays (11-6) +2
Over the last couple of weeks, the Blue Jays have solidified themselves as the team to beat in the American League. They are getting enough from the rotation to really be a tough out against anyone. The lineup is going to score runs and there is no question about that. After taking two of three in Boston and Houston, the AL East goes through Toronto. Now they play those same teams at home as they host Boston for four before Houston comes to town for three.
4. San Francisco Giants (12-5) -3
We can’t drop the Giants too far despite losing three of four to the Mets. Bouncing back to sweep the Nationals really helped them avoid that series loss snowballing out of control. Losing two starting pitchers to injuries hurts with Alex Cobb and Anthony DeSclafani headed to the IL. Now San Francisco will host Oakland for two and Washington for three as they hope to stack up some wins before the schedule picks up.
5. St. Louis Cardinals (9-6) +1
Most people believed that the Milwaukee Brewers would be the team to beat in the NL Central. So far, that has been wrong because the St. Louis Cardinals look very good. Jordan Hicks looks like a legitimate ace while Adam Wainwright and Albert Pujols look to have turned back the clock. Now the Cardinals have not played a very strong schedule but that will change. In fact they will host the Mets for three this week before Arizona comes to town for four. This team could be a fantastic story here in 2022.
6. Seattle Mariners (10-6) +3
The Mariners were coming off a tough series loss to the Chicago White Sox before starting their nine game homestand. They went 7-2 on that homestand taking two of three from the Astros and Rangers and sweeping the Royals. They now sit atop the AL West with a rotation ERA under three and are still awaiting the return of Mitch Haniger, Paul Sewald and Kyle Lewis. Ty France looks like a legit MVP candidate after going 13-26 last week with 3 home runs and 10 RBIs. All he does is hit and is becoming a household name. The Mariners now hit the road to Florida where they will play three with the Rays and then three with the Marlins.
7. San Diego Padres (10-7) +5
The San Diego Padres are very interesting. They beat the lower end teams but can’t seem to knock off the top tier. This week for example they swept the Reds before losing two of three to the Dodgers. The good news for them is that they have played a lot more lower end teams than upper tier squads. The bad news is that two teams in their division are in the top tier. The Padres need to find a way to win some series against good teams if they want to stay in a good spot for the wild card. A couple of three game series this week in Cincinnati and Pittsburgh should make for a solid bounce back week for San Diego.
8. Colorado Rockies (10-6) +3
Out of every team in baseball, the Rockies are the biggest surprise. They have not lost a series yet in 2022 after taking two of three from the Phillies and Tigers. The rotation seemed to be the strongest part of this team but I don’t think many expected Chad Kuhl to be dominating. So far in three starts, Kuhl is 2-0 with a 1.10 ERA and didn’t allow a run in his one home start. The NL West is ridiculously strong and the Rockies might be right in the wild card hunt at the end of the year.
9. New York Yankees (10-6) +6
The Yankees had a very good week against AL Central teams by taking two of three in Detroit and then sweeping the Guardians at home. Gerrit Cole looked lie he was getting back to his elite form by going 6 ⅔ shutout innings against Cleveland. Now we already talked about the fans, but everything else is turning around for the Yankees. They have a couple of manageable series this week as they host Baltimore for three before heading to Kansas City for three.
10. Tampa Bay Rays (9-7) –
Tampa Bay needed a good week to get back on track and they did just that. Not only did they take two of three from the Cubs, but even bigger was taking two of three from their AL East rival in Boston. Ji-Man Choi is having a breakout month here in April and they have needed it. The rest of the lineup is still working into the season aside from Wander Franco. The Rays will host another playoff contender when Seattle comes to town for three followed by Minnesota.
11. Milwaukee Brewers (10-7) +3
In six games this week, the Brewers gave up a total of 12 runs. Filthy pitching is the recipe for the Brew Crew to have success in 2022. Sweeping the Pirates and taking two of three from the Phillies was good, but we still need to see this team score runs against the top tier teams. An easy schedule coming up could help the offense wake up. They go to Pittsburgh for three before hosting the Cubs for three. The panic surrounding Christian Yelich is only getting worse which makes me skeptical about the Brewers chances in the NL.
12. Los Angeles Angels (10-7) -4
Mike Trout is still good at baseball. After missing him most of 2021, the Angels are getting a rejuvenated multi-time MVP. Trout helped the Angels win two of three against Houston but they would then drop two of three to Baltimore. It is nice to see Jo Adell figure things out, but this team needs to play more consistently if they want to battle with the Mariners and Astros for the division. A four game set with the Guardians and then three at the White Sox will give this offense an opportunity to show what they can do against good pitching.
13. Chicago White Sox (6-9) -10
No team in baseball had a worse week than the Chicago White Sox. Not only did they lose Eloy Jimenez for a couple of months, but they lost every game they played. They were swept by division foes in Cleveland and Minnesota to run their losing streak to seven games. Lucas Giolito is back but they need a lot more than him to get back on the right track. The offense isn’t scoring, the defense has been atrocious, and the elite bullpen is pitching with big deficits. The talent is there but this squad needs to start winning some games very quickly.
14. Boston Red Sox (7-10) -1
Boston had a chance to solidify their spot in the division with a series against Toronto and another one against Tampa Bay. They dropped two of three to both of those teams. The pitching is starting to be a major concern. Nick Pivetta has an ERA over 10 and that is a massive problem. The Red Sox now go to Toronto for four and then Baltimore for three. This is a week that they need to go above .500 during to start getting some momentum back in their favor.
15. Minnesota Twins (8-8) +9
This week was a wild ride for the Twins. They started out by having Byron Buxton injured and dropped a series to Kansas City. They finished the week with Buxton in the lineup and sweeping the Chicago White Sox. This team’s success all hinges on the health of Byron Buxton. When he is on the field, he is an MVP candidate and the Twins can fight for a playoff spot. As long as Buxton remains on the field, nobody wants to play the Twins. They will host Detroit this week for three before heading to Tampa Bay for three.
16. Houston Astros (7-9) -9
Houston, we have a problem. After dominating the AL West for the last five seasons, only losing the division in 2020, the Astros right now look like the third best team in that division behind Seattle and Los Angeles. The team is struggling at the plate but Jeremy Pena looks like a star. They did avoid being swept by Toronto, but they are clearly a middle tier team at best right now. Now they visit a team they have dominated in the Rangers for four before heading to Toronto for three.
17. Miami Marlins (7-8) +2
If you want to see one of the best young rotations in baseball, take a peek at the Miami Marlins. Pablo Lopez has taken a step up with an 0.52 ERA, Jesus Luzardo is exactly who we thought he was with 3.77 ERA, and Sandy Alcantara is an ace with a 1.86 ERA. The problem is the offense. They are averaging four runs per game so far which is not going to cut it in the NL East. If they can stay in the playoff race they can trade for some bats at the deadline. Miami will go to Washington for three before returning home to host the red hot Mariners for three.
18. Cleveland Guardians (7-9) –
Another team with a rollercoaster week was the Cleveland Guardians. They started off on cloud nine by sweeping the White Sox before being swept in the Bronx by the Yankees. One thing we need to do is give more respect to Jose Ramirez. He is one of the absolute best hitters in the game and many average fans have no idea who he is. Ramirez is right now batting .344 with four home runs and 21 RBIs. Cleveland will head out west for four with the Angels and three in Oakland.
19. Atlanta Braves (7-10) -2
Either I have a bad case of deja vu or the Braves are playing exactly like they were during the first half of last season. Two more series losses this week to the Dodgers and Marlins have Atlanta in 4th place in the NL East. They are 0-3-2 in series this season which is not ideal for a defending champion. The good news is that Ronald Acuna Jr. is out on rehab and closing in on a return. Could he be the spark that gets this team on track?
20. Oakland Athletics (9-8) +1
I still don’t know how to feel about the Oakland A’s. I do know that they are not the walkover that many expected them to be. They don’t feel like a playoff team but they could be a deciding factor on who wins the west. A very tough week for the bats awaits as they will visit the Giants for two before returning home to host the Guardians for three.
21. Pittsburgh Pirates (8-8) -1
In their four game series with the Cubs, the Pirates were outscored 29-12. They also won three of four in that series. Losing 21-0 will do that. Ke’Bryan Hayes is an absolute stud both with the bat and the glove. The offense is very solid and has been a surprise to most. The pitching is terrible. They have the third worst team ERA in baseball sitting at 5.33. Not a single pitcher in their rotation feels like a guy that will give you a shot to win a game every time he is on the mound. In this league you just have to have one of those guys.
22. Philadelphia Phillies (7-10) –
I keep telling myself the Phillies will turn it around. So far they have not shown any signs of turning the tides. A 2-4 week against the Rockies and Brewers shows where the Phillies are at. They can beat the non playoff teams but can’t beat any playoff contender. It still feels like this lineup is bound to explode any day now. Four games at home with the Rockies will hopefully wake them up because they then travel to the Mets for three over the weekend.
23. Detroit Tigers (6-9) –
Detroit is in the same boat as Philadelphia but without the feeling that they will figure it out. Of course we will talk about Miguel Cabrera. Miggy joined the 3000 hit club this week and is one of the greatest hitters of all time. I always feel like Albert Pujols gets the most attention as the most feared hitter of his generation, but Miguel Cabrera is right there and they both have done it with nothing but class. It has been an absolute pleasure to watch Miggy play and be a great role model for young players. A very special career.
24. Chicago Cubs (7-9) -8
The Cubs looked to save all of their scoring for that 21-0 win over Pittsburgh cause the rest of the week was tough. They scored 19 runs in their other six games this week. That is not a good look. Seiya Suzuki looks like what we heard he looked like over in Japan. This guy can hit it all around the field. The Cubs have a tough road trip as they travel to Atlanta for three before going to Milwaukee this weekend.
25. Baltimore Orioles (6-10) +1
Cedric Mullins is hitting .215 to start that season. To me it is a miracle the Orioles have won six games with him struggling. Out west the Orioles lost three of four in Oakland before taking two of three from the Angels. With John Means done for the year someone had to step up for this rotation. That someone has been Bruce Zimmerman. The lefty is pitching very well against some tough lineups. They will have a couple of series in their division as they go to New York for three with the Yankees before hosting Boston for three.
26. Texas Rangers (6-10) +3
The Rangers were lucky to steal one in Seattle but did lose two of three before taking two of three from Oakland. Corey Seager has shown flashes of the talent he has but Marcus Semien continues to struggle. With the lack of pitching they have, if the offense sputters they are in real trouble. They host Houston for four this week and then welcome the Braves to town for three.
27. Kansas City Royals (5-9) –
The Royals were another team that got off to a good start this week taking two of three from Minnesota. They were then swept in Seattle. Andrew Benintendi is still the lone bright spot in the order. They did avoid disaster when Salvador Perez was ok after being hit on the hand against the Mariners. The AL Central is a complete mess right now however so the Royals shouldn’t panic. They will visit the White Sox this week for three before hosting the Yankees for three this weekend.
28. Arizona Diamondbacks (6-11) –
The D-Backs are the exact same team as they were last year. The rotation has been much better but the bullpen is a mess and the offense isn’t much better. Madison Bumgarner seems to have figured things out and has been the ace Arizona needs so far this April. This week will be very tough for Arizona as they host the Dodgers for three before heading to St. Louis for four.
29. Washington Nationals (6-12) -4
Juan Soto is the only reason to watch a Nationals game. Josh Bell has been good but not much else has been exciting for Nats fans. They split four with Arizona before being swept by San Francisco. Based on the Alcides Escobar incident, I think the players are very frustrated as well. It will be very interesting to see how the players react to this as they host Miami for three before going to San Francisco for three more with the Giants.
30. Cincinnati Reds (3-13) –
There is no debate over who is the worst team in baseball. They did snap their 11 game losing streak on Sunday against the Cardinals. This team is terrible. The fans of Cincinnati deserve so much better but the front office doesn’t even seem to be trying to put out a winning product. THAT is a disgrace to baseball.