Tag:St Louis Cardinals
Posted on: May 4, 2009 1:46 am

Week 4 National League Power Rankings

Dodgers continue to dominate the NL West

NL Central dominates the rankings

Biggest Gainer - SF Giants (+4)

Biggest Loser - SD Padres (-6)

1. Los Angeles Dodgers (LW 2) Week 3 record (5-2)

When you own the best record in baseball at 18-8 and are a perfect 10-0 at home to start the season, you deserve the number 1 spot.  The main knock on this club is the bullpen.  The Dodgers' pen ranks only behind the revamped (and expensive) Mets pen in ERA.  The Dodgers have got fat off the NL West, with only 3 games thus far outside the division.  The road looks to get even easier for the boys in blue, as they welcome the 13th ranked Diamondbacks followed by the perennial 16th ranked Nationals to Chavez Ravine next week.

2. St. Louis Cardinals (LW 1) Week 3 record (4-2)

True they dropped a game (decidedly) to the Nationals last week, but they still are off to one of the best starts in franchise history.  They have a pair of unblemished starters in Kyle Loshe and Adam Wainright, and they both look to improve to 4-0.  The Cards head home to host a pair of two game series against both teams from the Keystone state before welcoming the suprising Reds.

3. Philadelphia Phillies (LW 4) Week 3 record (3-2)

The Phillies continue to dominate the Mets in recent history and look to continue that trend after mother nature ruined the rubber game this week.  They recieve a walk-off win courtesy of Sean Green's bases loaded walk to climb within a half a game of the reeling Marlins (pun intended).  Shane Victorino continues to persue the "most exciting player" title from Jose Reyes, for whatever that means.  He is a riot to watch.  They have an interesting 2 game series against the Cardinals before taking on the Mets at Tax Payer's park.

4. Florida Marlins (LW 6) Week 3 record (3-4)

They initially bounced back nicely against a team they seem to own, the Mets, before they stunk it up at Wrigley.  Hanley Ramirez' injury was scary to watch, especially those of us who watched what happened to Jayson Werth after he was hit in a spring training game on the wrist.  There are so many little bones that an injury there has devistating consequences at times.  They get bumped up to 4th this week for having a good showing in New York, but their hold is tenuous.  They are the only division leader with a negative run differential (-2) which is not a good omen.

5. Cincinnati Reds (LW 5) Week 3 record (3-3)

A mediocre week for the Reds as they split they won a series against the Pirates but lost the series to the AstrosJohnny Cueto looked great in a shutout of the offensively-challenged bucs.  More alarming to me is the lackluster attendance in Cincy.  This is one of the proudest franchises in baseball (and the oldest) and they're drawing crowds of 12K, 9K, and 12K on a weekday series against Houston.  Either the local economy or the weather is poor in the old rust-belt because this team is worth watching.

6. San Francisco Giants (LW 10) Week 3 record (4-2)

Boy that pitching is tough.  Randy Johnson is looking very formidable again and Barry Zito looks like he's worth about half the contract he recieved (which is huge improvement compared to the first 2 years of said contract).  Tim Lincecum has settled down to show why he's the defending Cy Young and the bullpen has held it together for the most part.  They took home series from both the Dodgers and Rockies and get to travel to Chicago, Denver, and Los Angeles next week.

7. Milwaukee Brewers (LW 9) Week 3 record (5-2)

I really want to rank the Brewers higher than 8th, which is right in the middle of the league, but I can't.  They fattened up on the Pirates for the 150th straight time before nearly dropping 3 of 4 to the Diamondbacks, at home.  Dave Bush has been impressive so far this season and that 1-0 win from Yovani Gallardo with Gallardo hitting the homerun was thrilling.  We'll see where they go from here as they have a short trip to Pittsburgh and Cincinnatti before hosting the despised Cubbies.

8. Chicago Cubs (LW 11) Week 3 record (4-3)

The Cubs got a huge Grand Slam from both Ryan Theriot and Derek Lee en route to a 3-1 series victory over the fish.  They dropped a few games in the desert earlier this week but will have a tough test hosting the Giants before heading to Houston and Milwaukee to face two fiesty division rivals.  Hopefully Carlos Zambrano's injury isn't serious, and I don't want to hear any abolish the DH junk because he injured himself running out a (beautiful) bunt.

9. Pittsburgh Pirates (LW 3) Week 3 record (1-5)

Huge dissapointment for the Pirates this week.  They were climbing the board quickly and I even put them at #3, which is huge, before they absolutely tanked against the Brewers and Reds.  They have a chance to finally win a game against the Brewers again next week and hopefully show more promise.  The team is still .500, which is a bit of a moral victory for Pirates fans these days.

10. New York Mets (LW 12) Week 3 record (2-3 )

When are the Mets going to break out?  I have no doubt they will, but we're now 4 weeks in the books and they're still 3 games under .500.  The NL West is largely percieved to be the weakest division in the NL (if not baseball) yet if the Mets played in said division, they would now be 8 games back in the win column.  Instead they're only 3 games back and with the demotion of Oliver Perez, the rotation might see more consistancy.

11. Houston Astros (LW 13) Week 3 record (4-2)

Another team I would like to rank higher.  They play tough, and I feel I owe them for thinking they were so bad in the beginning.  They've played well of late, but I suppose they will be consistant will all the veteran leadership they have on the team.  Jose Valverde has landed on the DL, but LaTroy Hawkins has picked up right where he left off, and has now surpassed him in saves.

12. Atlanta Braves (LW 7) Week 3 record (2-4)

This team reminds me of the Mets in many ways.  I expected more from them than I've seen and I'm sure they're going to break out any time now.  But, they haven't.  Instead they drop series to both the Cardinals and Reds without generating much offense.  They've only scored 98 runs which is good for last in their division.  To put a positive spin on it, they've also given up the fewest amount of runs in their division, so the pitching is a reason to be optimistic.  They face all division opponents next week in hopes of closing the 2.5 game gap between them and the division leading Marlins.

13. Arizona Diamondbacks (LW 15) Week 3 record (4-3)

Positive signs coming from this squad this week as they have a winning week and are only 3 games under .500 at this time.  Rich Harden is the most mentioned pitcher who is filling the void left by Brandon Webb, but Doug Davis keeps on keeping on to the tune of 2.91 ERA.  They face the Dodgers in hopes of being the first team to beat the blue crew at home this season.

14. San Diego Padres (LW 8) Week 3 record (1-6)

Pathetic week.  I live in San Diego and listen to many of the media down here.  This city is absolutely convinced that the season for the Pads is a wash, and this was the team they exptected from the go.  They are swept by LA in a 4 game series for the first time in franchise history and haven't won a game started by either Chris Young or Jake Peavy, in 3 turns of the rotation now.  Not much positive coming out of America's Finest City right now.

15. Colorado Rockies (LW 14) Week 3 record (3-3)

A better week from the Rox though they are still the 2nd worst team in the NL right now.  Troy Tulowitzki has endured a murderous season thus far (and I would know, beacuse I'm the idiot who drafted him for my fantasy team).  As mentioned in last week's rankings, however, Jason Marquis has been spectacular for the Rockies and if they continue to slide, he would be a tantalizing piece to trade.

16. Washington Nationals (LW 16) Week 3 record (2-4)

At least they didn't lose on Sunday.  The finale against the Cardinals was rained out, but they did get a victory against the NL Central leaders.  Want to see pitching at it's worst?  Check out Daniel Cabrera's day against the Mets.  2.1 IP, 5 Runs, 6 Hits 4 BB and 1 K.

Posted on: April 26, 2009 11:03 pm

Week 3 National League Power Rankings

An interesting week in baseball where the Marlins follow up a 7-0 week with a 0-6 stinker.  A lot of movement this week with strong showings from the Pirates, Giants, and Philles.


Biggest gainer – Pittsburgh Pirates (+6)

Biggest loser – Chicago Cubs/New York Mets (-6)


1. St. Louis Cardinals (LW 4) Week 3 record (5-1)

Let me start by saying that their major work this week was done within the confines of Busch III.  With that said, Albert Pujols is absolutely unbelievable.  With another grand slam he already has 25 RBI and 7 home runs.  Khalil Greene is enjoying a nice rebirth in St. Louis with 12 runs scored despite a paltry average.  Next week the redbirds head to Atlanta for a tough 3 games, but will get well against lowly Washington.

2. Los Angeles Dodgers (LW 1) Week 3 record (3-3)

The Dodgers had an inconsistent start to their 9 game road trip, especially from the pitching standpoint.  Clayton Kershaw and James McDonald’s performances must be concerning.  The offense continues to pound the ball and Clayton Kershaw has emerged as a legitimate Cy Young contender.

3. Pittsburgh Pirates (LW 9) Week 3 record (5-1)

When last week’s #9 ranking seemed out of place for a baseball team out of Pittsburgh, this week feels downright wrong.  Look at the facts though, they’ve gone to San Diego and kicked them around, averaging 7 runs a game at the antithesis of Yankee Stadium, Petco Park.  In addition, they swept the pants off the red-hot Marlins early in the week.  They head to Milwaukee for the start of important series of games against NL Central foes.

4. Philadelphia Phillies (LW 7) Week 3 record (4-2)

Now that the passing of Harry Kalas has sunk in, the Phillies were able to focus on baseball.  They finished off an impressive sweep of the Marlins but only managed to take 1 of 3 at home against the Brew Crew.  They look to continue their ascent when they take on the Nationals and Mets next week.  When Chan Ho Park goes deep, you know you’re getting the breaks.  In addition, it’s been years since a Phillies LF has made web gems, naturally Raul Ibanez looks like a good pickup.



5. Cincinnati Reds (LW 8) Week 3 record (4-3)

The pitching was terrific this week outside of Bronson Arroyo’s disaster Saturday.  The rotation of Cueto, Harang, Arroyo, Owings, and Volquez doesn’t get enough press.  As always the offense in queen city is stellar and with the defense improved with the subtractions of Dunn and Griffey, I like this team to continue to hang around the top of the division.  They face the Astros before heading out to Pittsburgh and Miami.

6. Florida Marlins (LW 2) Week 3 record (0-6)

What a difference a week makes!  They say in baseball that you’re never as good as you look when you’re winning and you’re not as bad as you are when you’re losing.  When you go undefeated the previous week and go winless the following, that’s the definition of inconsistency.  The kids will get it together again with a much needed homestand.  This team in the 6<sup>th</sup> position might seem a stretch, but they still have 11 wins and lead the NL East.

7. Atlanta Braves (LW 10) Week 3 record (3-3)

A much better week for “America’s Team”.  Then again, that is to be expected when you have a 3 game series against the Nationals, unless you do what the Braves did, and drop 2 of 3.  I cut them slack, however, for being on the road for the last week and a half.  They’ve only spent 6 games at home (though not impressively) but should really have their measurement taken when they have the Cardinals and Astros come into Dixie next week.

8. San Diego Padres (LW 3) Week 3 record (1-3)

Maybe we didn’t think the Pirates were going to be this good, maybe we thought the Padres hot start was more than it was.  It’s a tough thing to call when a team travels 3,000 miles and takes series from a revamped Mets squad and the World Champs.  The Padres, however, have come back to earth with a shellacking from the Buccos and a 2 game sweep at the hands of the Giants.  Next week they hit the road with more NL West action against the Dodgers and Rockies.



9. Milwaukee Brewers (LW 12) Week 3 record (4-2)

It was a nice turn-around week for the Brewers, as they took 2 of 3 from the defending champs and went to oil country and promptly took 2 of 3 from them.  Dave Bush is one of the more intriguing pitchers to me.  I had him on a fantasy team a few years ago and kept a close eye on him.  He pitched very well for my team that year, but was miserable after.  He looked great again on Friday night with a 5-2 victory but will be in for a tough time when he faces Paul Maholm on Tuesday against the Pirates. 

10. San Francisco Giants (LW 15) Week 3 record (4-1)

An encouraging week for Giants fans, as their team took advantage of two days off and beat the Padres and D’Backs 4 out of 5 games.  Randy Johnson is looking better of late (though he only registered a no-decision in Saturday’s 5-3 victory.  The only blemish on the Giants record this week came in Sunday’s late cough up loss.  They head to the City for a homestand against the hated Dodgers and Colorado before a long road trip.

11. Chicago Cubs (LW 5) Week 3 record (2-4)

Their body of work would predicate a better ranking than 11<sup>th</sup> , but the way they were handled in St. Louis and by Cincinnati was very disappointing.  The offense was atrocious save for the 10-3 victory over the Cards on Sunday.  They will need to have better showings next week when they head to Arizona for 3 and back to Chi Town for a 4 game set against a reeling Marlins squad.

12. New York Mets (LW 6) Week 3 record (2-4 )

This isn’t an east coast-west coast hate thing, the facts are the facts.  They were swept in St. Louis in a rematch of the 2006 NLCS and were beat 8-1 against the Nationals…..at home!  The 8-10 record isn’t enough to create mass panic in the big apple, but with series against the Marlins, Phillies, Braves, and Phillies again, this team needs to find another pitcher after Johan Santana, and quickly.  Don’t blame the WBC on Oliver Perez’ inconsistency, ask any Padres or Pirates fan, it’s always been this way.



13. Houston Astros (LW 13) Week 3 record (3-3)

Defeated the Dodgers 2 of 3 and barely lost that 3<sup>rd</sup> game 2-0.  Would expect more from a team that has spent 13 of it’s first 19 games at home, but alas, a 7-12 mark is where they are.  When Russ Ortiz is your team leader in wins, you have problems.  Wandy Rodriguez is one of those players who is super under-the-radar and someone to keep an eye on.  They finally hit the road next week with trips to Ohio and Georgia.

14. Colorado Rockies (LW 11) Week 3 record (2-4)

They have to be better than this.  The National League champions in 2007 are a mere 6-11 so far this season.  They’ve given up more runs than anyone besides the Nationals and Phillies while playing only 6 at home.  Troy Tulowitzki has been atrocious and might be a big reason this team is struggling.  Ubaldo Jimenez and the rest of the staff have looked terrible save for Jason Marquis who has performed admirably.         

15. Arizona Diamondbacks (LW 14) Week 3 record (3-3)

You think 15 is a tough spot for a team that went 3-3 last week?  Not when you’ve had a homestand consisting of the 14<sup>th</sup> ranked Rockies and 10<sup>th</sup> ranked Giants.  This team hasn’t looked the same since about ¾ the way through last year.  The kids still strike out way too much and the pitching is still inconsistent.  Add Brandon Webb hitting the DL for a long stretch and you’re looking like a fool if you picked this team to come out of the NL West.  The road ahead gets tougher with series against the Cubs, Brewers, at the Dodgers and Padres.

16. Washington Nationals (LW 16) Week 3 record (3-3)

Bravo!  This team looks like it might have a clue.  They’ve locked up Ryan Zimmerman for a couple more years and they’ve decided to give up on their awful bullpen.  They have some pieces coming from the minor leagues but have a long way to go.  Kudos to Daniel Cabrera for actually getting on base for the first time in his career. 

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com