Sports

The Times' baseball rankings

Major League BaseballSportsBaseballOakland AthleticsMilwaukee BrewersNational LeagueDevin Mesoraco
The Angels move up four spots to take over No. 1 in The Times' baseball rankings
Orioles remain No. 2-ranked team while the Nationals fall from the top spot to No. 3
Dodgers fall one spot to No. 4 as Yasiel Puig continues to struggle at the plate

Kevin Baxter ranks the 30 teams. Last week's ranking in parentheses, statistics are through Friday's games:

1. ANGELS: Kole Calhoun is the only player in baseball with a .300 average, 50 runs and 10 homers since June 1. (5)

2. BALTIMORE: Orioles haven't had this big a lead in August since 1997. (2)

3. WASHINGTON: Nationals are an NL-best 25-15 since the All-Star break. (1)

4. DODGERS: Puig has one homer, 7 RBIs in 117 at-bats since taking part in All-Star Home Run Derby. (3)

5. SAN FRANCISCO: Yusmeiro Petit went 32 days and 46 batters between baserunners allowed. (14)

6. ATLANTA: B.J. Upton (.204) gives Braves NL's worst hitter for second year in row. A.J. Ellis (.194)? Not enough at-bats. (9)

7. KANSAS CITY: First-place Royals are a baseball-best 26-10 since July 22. (6)

8. OAKLAND: A's hitting an AL-worst .228 since trading cleanup hitter Yoenis Cespedes. (4)

9. DETROIT: In 2011 Verlander won Cy Young, MVP awards. Now he leads AL in runs allowed (98) and Tigers in losses. (10)

10. MILWAUKEE: Brewers have led the division since April 5, a span of 148 days. (8)

11. CLEVELAND: Relievers have earned a league-high 30 of the Indians' 69 wins this season. (16)

12. SEATTLE: ERA of 3.03 leaves team with a chance to become first AL team with ERA below 3.00 since 1974 A's. (7)

13. PITTSBURGH: Pirates' bullpen worst in the NL with 23 blown saves in 60 chances. (13)

14. ST. LOUIS: Cards play division-leading Brewers 7 times in next 19 days. (11)

15. N.Y. YANKEES: Relievers lead majors with 467 strikeouts, an average of more than 10.3 per 9 innings. (15)

16. TORONTO: Encarnacion (27) and Bautista (28) are the only pair of teammates with 25-plus home runs. (18)

17. CINCINNATI: Catcher Devin Mesoraco is 6 for 7 with three homers hitting with the bases loaded. (22)

18. MIAMI: NL home run leader Giancarlo Stanton has been walked intentionally 23 times, most in baseball. (12)

19. TAMPA BAY: Rays' 2.65 ERA, 7 shutouts since the All-Star break are the best in baseball. (17)

20. SAN DIEGO: Punchless Padres averaging an MLB-low 3.3 runs a game. (19)

21. CHICAGO CUBS: Baez, Soler are first players since 1954 with 3 HRs in first 3 MLB games — and both did it in August. (23)

22. N.Y. METS: CF Juan Lagares leads baseball with a 3.6 defensive WAR and is second with 30 defensive runs saved. (21)

23. CHICAGO WHITE SOX: Jose Abreu only player in either league among top 5 in all three Triple Crown categories (24)

24. BOSTON The team's leaders in wins, ERA, innings pitched and strikeouts haven't pitched for Boston since July. (27)

26. MINNESOTA: Brian Dozier's league-leading 94 runs are 16% of the Twins' total this season. (25)

25. PHILADELPHIA: Phillies' .580 August winning percentage since 2005 is highest in the National League. (26)

27. HOUSTON: If Altuve holds on to win the batting title he will become, at 5 feet 5, the shortest champion in 116 seasons. (20)

28. ARIZONA: Paul Gold-¿schmidt hasn't had an at-bat in August yet still tops team in nine offensive categories. (30)

29. COLORADO: NL batting leader Justin Morneau (.311) on pace for lowest league-leading average since 1968. (29)

30. TEXAS: Rangers have used an MLB record-tying 59 players this season, 36 of whom have pitched. (28)

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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Major League BaseballSportsBaseballOakland AthleticsMilwaukee BrewersNational LeagueDevin Mesoraco
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