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MLB Power Rankings - Dodgers lead rest of the majors into second half

Posted by Dale "Skip" Lalonde on 4/24/2012 10:02:59 AM
The Dodgers are creeping near the top of the baseball betting favorites for this year’s World Series odds, and they could pose a serious threat to Philadelphia if they happen to pick up a certain ace that is now on the trade block.

(Last week’s rankings in brackets)

1. (1) Los Angeles Dodgers (56-32): The Dodgers are in the running to grab Roy Halladay from Toronto, which will certainly boost their baseball lines, but how much will they let go for him?

2. (4) Boston Red Sox (54-34): With Josh Beckett and Tim Wakefield leading the way, the Red Sox are second in the AL in ERA, while coming in third in runs scored. That’s a combination that usually leads to a division title, and possibly more.

3. (11) Philadelphia Phillies (48-38): The Phillies picked up Pedro Martinez and are apparently also trying to pry Halladay from Toronto. That would boost a pitching staff that is 13th in quality starts and 14th in ERA, and take pressure off their explosive offense.

4. (3) Los Angeles Angels (49-37): The Angels’ offense has carried them through the season, but injuries to Vladdy Guerrero and Torii Hunter could hurt them to start the second half of the year. Still, they have to be the offshore sportsbook favorite to win the AL West.

5. (2) New York Yankees (51-37): Getting swept in L.A. certainly didn’t help the Yankees, but they should be more concerned about their record against Boston, which could decide the AL East: New York is 0-8 against the Red Sox this year.

6. (5) San Francisco Giants (49-39): Matt Cain should be fine to make his next scheduled started for the Giants, who lead the NL in ERA. But my god, do they ever need a big bat in the lineup if they want to compete with the Dodgers.

7. (10) Detroit Tigers (48-39): The Tigers are leading the AL Central, but Magglio Ordonez isn’t worth the price per head at over $18 million a season. Not for the first half of the year, anyway.

8. (13) Seattle Mariners (46-42): The quietest team in the big leagues is first across the board in most major pitching categories, and with a little bit more offense, the AL West becomes a three-team race.

9. (7) Tampa Bay Rays (48-41): Evan Longoria missed the All-Star game with an infected finger, while Carl Crawford earned the MVP award with a game-saving catch. What All-Star break?

10. (6) Texas Rangers (48-39): The Rangers are slugging the ball, but not hitting for average. I don’t know how that works, but they’d score more runs if people were on base when they’re hitting these dingers.

11. (8) St. Louis Cardinals (49-42): I heard that the Cardinals were also after Halladay. Doc, Chris Carpenter and that Pujols guy would make the Cards an instant contender in this year’s World Series betting odds.

12. (12) Colorado Rockies (47-41): Brad Hawpe may be the most underrated player of the first half, but I still don’t see the Rockies as a solid betting contender. The clock is ticking.

13. (11) Chicago White Sox (45-43): Couldn’t one of his beloved White Sox give President Obama some tips before his awful first pitch to kick off the Midseason Classic? Oh well, that’s one thing G.W. Bush is better than Obama at.

14. (19) Florida Marlins (46-44): The Marlins won the World Series in 1997, rebuilt and won again in 2003, then rebuilt, and it’s 2009...see a pattern here?

15. (14) Minnesota Twins (45-44): Whatever you do, DO NOT SLEEP on these Twins. They’ll be right there to capitalize if Detroit slips, and they’re far more consistent that the White Sox.

16. (20) Houston Astros (44-44)

17. (17) Milwaukee Brewers (45-43)

18. (15) Chicago Cubs (43-43)

19. (24) New York Mets (42-45)

20. (26) Baltimore Orioles (40-48)

21. (27) Oakland Athletics (37-49)

22. (18) Atlanta Braves (43-45)

23. (23) Toronto Blue Jays (44-46)

24. (17) Cincinnati Reds (42-45)

25. (21) Arizona Diamondbacks (38-51)

26. (25) Pittsburgh Pirates (38-50)

27. (28) San Diego Padres (36-52)

28. (22) Kansas City Royals (37-51)

29. (29) Cleveland Indians (35-54)

30. (30) Washington Nationals (26-61)

The Mets made a little run before the break, but still, too many injuries. That thing you see coming out of Toronto is a white flag, and J.P. Ricciardi won’t even get anything good for Halladay. Finally, the National are one of my online betting picks...to win less than 50 games.

For more baseball lines, props and odds, visit the offshore sportsbook at betonline.com.

Before his arm flamed out, Dale “Skip” Lalonde was famous for his high-90s heat and power at the plate. He retired young but never turned his back on baseball, earning the nickname “Skip” for his high-school coaching prowess. A true student of the game, he loves crunching the numbers when he handicaps baseball.

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