Sports

The Times' MLB power rankings

Zach Helfand ranks the 30 Major League Baseball teams.

Last week's rankings are in parentheses;statistics are through Friday's games:

1. ST. LOUIS: Ace gone for the year in a tough division? Yawn. The Cards have a comfortable cushion in first. (1)

2. MINNESOTA: Like the Giants — decent lineup, good pitching, scorching May — only better. (5)

3. HOUSTON: Luis Valbuena is the quintessential Astro. Leads the team in home runs. Batting less than .200. (6)

4. PITTSBURGH: Andrew McCutchen raised his batting average 108 points over 26 games (9)

5. DODGERS: Good news: Dodgers can be seen Tuesday on Charter. Bad news: Just in time to watch tired team struggle. (7)

6. KANSAS CITY: The Royals lost eight games in a 10-game stretch. This division will be fun. (2)

7. WASHINGTON: Where would this offense be without Bryce Harper? (3)

8. N.Y. METS: Meet Steven Matz, the Mets' latest ace-in-waiting. If pitching and defense win, well … (11)

9. SAN FRANCISCO: That sound? That was the Giants' May bubble bursting. (4)

10. CHICAGO CUBS: With the passing of Lennie Merullo, no person on Earth has played in World Series with Cubs. (10)

11. TEXAS: The Rangers say Joey Gallo is up in the majors only temporarily. Yeah, right. (14)

12. N.Y. YANKEES: The league's most inconsistent team is on a hot streak, which means they'll soon be swept. (16)

13. ANGELS: Albert Pujols' six homers in seven games are his way of laughing at Mike Trout's intentional walks. (13)

14. TAMPA BAY: The Rays are first in the majors in opponents' batting average. If only they could score runs. (17)

15. SAN DIEGO: James Shields is still unbeaten. The rest of the team? Beaten fairly regularly. (19)

16. ATLANTA: Braves' rebuilding effort going more quickly than expected. If they had bullpen, they might contend. (20)

17. CLEVELAND: The starting pitching staff leads the majors in strikeouts. (21)

18. DETROIT: The Tigers might want to hang some posters to try to find their offense. (8)

19. ARIZONA: Poor Paul Goldschmidt — one of the league's best hitters is on one its more irrelevant teams. (18)

20. BALTIMORE: The Orioles didn't win once last week, and the American League East remains unpredictable. (15)

21. TORONTO: Help wanted: Seeking pitcher. Earned-run average must be under 4.00. Nights and weekends. (23)

22. OAKLAND: Athletics used left-hander and right-hander to pitch a scoreless sixth Friday. Both were Pat Venditte. (24)

23. COLORADO: Hey, Denver, can California borrow some of your rain? (26)

24. CHICAGO WHITE SOX: The start has been bad, but the White Sox are still contenders in the AL Central. (22)

26. CINCINNATI: If the Reds don't start winning, Johnny Cueto could be gone before the trade deadline. (28)

25. MIAMI: Dee Gordon leads the All-Star vote at second base. (27)

27. SEATTLE: What's up with Robinson Cano? He's batting .248 with just two home runs. (12)

28. BOSTON: Through their first 51 games, the Red Sox had their worst run differential in 55 years. (25)

29. MILWAUKEE: Turns out it wasn't the manager. This team just wasn't good. (29)

30. PHILADELPHIA: On the bright side, Philadelphia, only a couple months until Tebow time! (30)

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