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It's been a busy few weeks in MLB. The strong keep getting stronger. Not too long ago, all six divisions were very close. As I type, now there's only two divisions with second place teams within 5 games of the leaders. Wild Card races had important battles this weekend and remains wide open as August winds down. Here's my two cents and personal power rankings.
1- New York Yankees (78-46) Red hot. Lineup is firing on all cylinders. Starting pitchers perfoming well. Best record in baseball.
2- Los Angeles Angels (74-48) Survived key injuries to pitchers and hitters. A complete team. Only one player in lineup batting below .290.
3- Los Angeles Dodgers (74-41) Very balanced team in all facets. Colorado is charging hard after LA had rushed out to a big lead.
4- St Louis Cardinals (72-54) I didn't give StL too much credit heading out of spring training. They're looking very strong right now. Matt Holliday was a key deadline deal solidifying an increasingly dangerous lineup.
5- Philadelphia Phillies (71-50) Streaking Phils running away with NL East (as of now). Glaring weakness is bullpen. Starters going strong. Ryan Howard has finally awaken. Haven't played any strong teams lately.
6- Colorado Rockies (70-54) NL Wild Card leaders closing in on NL division leading LA. One of MLB's hottest teams is looking very strong. Starting pitchers playing their hearts out.
7- Texas Rangers (69-54) In a seesaw wild card battle with Boston. Rangers pitching has been a pleasant surprise. Only 5-5 in past 10 is raising a few question marks.
8- Boston Red Sox (70-53) Pitching is a major problem in Boston. Once hot hitting lineup only getting it done in spurts. Tough 2 of 3 loss to Yanks this weekend exposed a few flaws.
9- Tampa Bay Rays (67-56) Great home record (42-21), terrible away (25-35). They need a hot streak.
10- Detroit Tigers (62-58) Not really a top 10 team but they get this mark by me for being AL Central division leaders. Strong team beginning to struggle. Rest of division has not taken advantage when Tigers stumble.
11- Atlanta Braves (66-58) Braves have been playing well even though they've lost ground to Phils. Atlanta needs a hot streak to keep pace with both Philly & Colorado.
12- SF Giants (67-57) Fell off the pace for NL West title. Remains very much in wild card picture. Lincecum hasn't won in his past 4 starts.
13- Florida Marlins (65-59) They're beginning to drop back and will have to turn it around to keep pace with hotter NL teams. More conistency needed from lineup... quickly.
14- Chicago White Sox (63-61) Fiery Ozzie Guillen will be gone after this season. Team can't find a way to score runs. Underachievers should be in AL Cetral drivers seat. There's still hope even though these guys haven't awaken from sleep walking thru 2009 season.
15-30: Does it really matter? Not many bright spots here. Major disappointments or train wreck seasons continue to haunt these teams. Most notably... Chicago Cubs.
Stay tuned for my NFL power rankings due later this week.
All World All Sports (www.allworldallsports.com)