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MLB Power Rankings - Yankees take No.1 spot, Cards coming on strong

Posted by Dale "Skip" Lalonde on 4/24/2012 9:40:01 AM
The Yankees have surged to the top of the MLB betting pack with a big win over their division rivals, but they’re being chased by the teams from the City of Angels, the Dodgers and Angels.

(Last week’s rankings in brackets)

1. (2) New York Yankees (69-43) – A recent seven-game winning streak was punctuated by a four-game sweep of the Red Sox. With C.C. Sabathia and A.J. Burnett shutting them down, the Yankees are frightening.

2. (1) Los Angeles Angels (66-44) – They lost two of three at home to Texas, but still have a decent lead in the AL West. Another playoff berth is in the cards.

3. (4) Los Angeles Dodgers (68-45) – Not all is good in La-la land: ace Chad Billingsley just went on the DL with a hamstring injury. Watch this spot next week to see how the Dodgers fare without him.

4. (11) St. Louis Cardinals (63-51) – They’re the most complete and best-coached team in the NL Central, which is why the Cardinals are playoff-bound.

5. (6) Colorado Rockies (62-50) – These guys just won’t go away. A healthy Troy Tulowitzki does wonders for the Rockies.

6. (7) Texas Rangers (62-48) – That series win in Los Angeles was huge, especially in the wake of the Josh Hamilton scandal. With a No.1 ace, this is a playoff team.

7. (6) Boston Red Sox (63-48) – Well, that spanking from the Yankees was a long time coming. How much longer will John Smoltz be a Red Sox player?

8. (3) Philadelphia Phillies (61-48) – New pitchers seem to help the Phillies, as they can’t seem to win unless Cliff Lee is on the mound. Pedro Martinez makes his debut tonight, so we should see soon how he’ll affect the Phillies’ sports betting odds.

9. (12) Florida Marlins (59-53) – They got swept in Washington, and they sweep the Phillies in Philly...how does that work?

10. (10) San Francisco Giants (61-51) – Wow, I bet the Giants are happy they didn’t pull the trigger on last year’s rumored deal with Toronto concerning Alex Rios for Tim Lincecum or Matt Cain, aren’t they?

11. (8) Tampa Bay Rays (61-51) – The Rays haven’t played close to their potential, and they’re still in the wild-card race. I wouldn’t want to see them in the playoffs.

12. (13) Detroit Tigers (59-52) – The Tigers have the talent to win the AL Central, and they probably will, but they don’t have the look of a team that will scare you in the fall. The pickup of Jerrod Washburn was a good look, though, Justin Verlander needs a wingman.

13. (16) Atlanta Braves (58-54) – The Braves won’t go away, and even though they don’t score many runs, they don’t allow many, either. When the Braves are on the field, take the under in your sportsbook for the most part.

14. (17) Seattle Mariners (59-53) – The Mariners are in the same boat as the Braves, and they just offloaded Washburn. I don’t see them making the postseason.

15. (14) Chicago White Sox – They grabbed Alex Rios from Toronto in a last-ditch effort at the playoffs. It would be good if they made it because the more chances for Ozzie Guillen quotes, the better for baseball in general.

16. (9) Chicago Cubs (58-52)

17. (19) Milwaukee (55-56)

18. (21) Houston (55-57)

19. (23) New York Mets (52-60)

20. (15) Minnesota (54-57)

21. (25) Washington (40-72)

22. (22) Toronto (54-57)

23. (20) Oakland (50-62)

24. (18) Arizona (51-62)

25. (26) Cleveland (48-63)

26. (30) Cincinnati (48-63)

27. (29) San Diego (47-66)

28. (24) Baltimore (46-66)

29. (27) Kansas City (43-68)

30. (28) Pittsburgh (45-66)

I just couldn’t put the Nationals in the top 20, but they’ve won in eight in a row, which is just mind-boggling. But to put in perspective of how bad they’ve been all season, they still have a 3.5-game lead in Tank Wars 2009, which makes them the online betting favorite for next year’s No.1 pick.

For the weekly MLB power rankings as we head towards the postseason, visit the Betting Edge 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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