With the MLB All-Star game about a month away, the St. Louis Cardinals are holding tight to the top spot in the MLB Power Rankings this week. They continue to play great baseball despite their ace Adam Wainwright being lost for the season. Jaime Garcia is carrying the load for him; he currently has a 2.67 ERA. The team with the current hot streak is the Pittsburgh Pirates. They are winners of 13 of their past 16 games, and climbed to 2nd place in the NL Central.
That is a tough division to win this year because of how well the Cardinals have been playing, but I think whatever team takes 2nd in that division will gain a wildcard berth. Pittsburgh moved up 5 spots to number 4 in the Power Rankings. The Pirates also will be coming into a favorable schedule with series against the Brewers, Phillies and White Sox- all last place teams.
Houston currently has the number 2 spot followed by the Dodgers at number 3. The Astros have the lead in the AL West- it still feels weird saying Astros and AL in the same sentence- but they have dropped 5 straight games and won just 4 of their past 10. The rest of the AL West are pretty much .500 and under, so they may get away with winning the division, but I don't see them getting deep in the playoffs.
The New York Yankees have put together the best current winning streak. They lost 5 straight, being swept in two games by the Nats, and then in three games by the Rangers. Since then, they swept the Royals, lost 3 of 4 to the A's, and then swept the Mariners and Angels for 6 in a row, and a game and a half lead in the AL East. As we approach the Mid-Summer Classic, will the Cards continue to win without Wainwright and hold the top spot, or could the Dodgers overtake them? There are some good inter-league match-ups this week that could help answer that question.