FanGraphs Power Rankings: May 23–29

An eventful long weekend of baseball led to some changes at the top of the power rankings, with the teams toward the middle of the pack continuing to jostle for position.

A reminder for how these rankings are calculated: first, we take the three most important components of a team — their offense (wRC+), and their starting rotation and bullpen (a 50/50 blend of FIP- and RA9-, weighted by IP share) — and combine them to create an overall team quality metric. New for this year, I’ve opted to include defense as a component, though it’s weighted less heavily than offense and pitching. Some element of team defense is captured by RA9-, but now that FanGraphs has Statcast’s OAA/RAA available on our leaderboards, I’ve chosen to include that as the defensive component for each team. I also add in a factor for “luck,” adjusting a team’s win percentage based on expected win-loss record. The result is a power ranking, which is then presented in tiers below.

Note: All stats are through Sunday’s games.

Tier 1 – The Best of the Best
Team Record “Luck” wRC+ SP- RP- RAA Team Quality Playoff Odds
Dodgers 33-14 -3 120 76 82 -6 165 98.9%
Astros 30-18 1 108 91 79 14 165 97.9%
Yankees 33-15 0 111 74 81 -4 154 97.5%
Mets 32-17 1 115 95 94 0 149 94.5%

The Dodgers have come roaring back into the top spot of these rankings with 13 wins in their last 16 games. Mookie Betts has blasted nine home runs in his last 17 games, and Trea Turner is in the midst of a 22-game hitting streak. If there’s something to be concerned about, it’s their team defense. A misplayed grounder cost them a game against the Phillies a couple of weeks ago, and it happened again last night against the Pirates.

Even though the Astros just lost a three-game series to the Mariners in which they were outscored 13–3, they’re still high up in these rankings and in the standings. The Angels’ recent struggles give them a bit of breathing room in the AL West, and Houston’s schedule lightens up over the next couple of weeks, with trips to Oakland and Kansas City before home series against Seattle and Miami.

The Yankees are really beat up. They’ve lost Giancarlo Stanton, Josh Donaldson, Aroldis Chapman, Chad Green, and Jonathan Loáisiga to the Injured List all within the last two weeks. They even had to call on Matt Carpenter to help fill the gaps in their lineup. A trio of high-leverage relievers going down at the same time would normally give teams nightmares. Luckily, New York already has two excellent replacements ready to step into late-inning roles: the king of sinkers, Clay Holmes, and fireman Michael King.

After losing an epic, back-and-forth contest against the Giants on Tuesday, the Mets went out and swept the Phillies in three games over the weekend, then dropped 13 runs on the Nationals on Monday night. They’ve barely missed a beat after Max Scherzer hit the IL and are currently running away with the NL East.

Tier 2 – On the Cusp of Greatness
Team Record “Luck” wRC+ SP- RP- RAA Team Quality Playoff Odds
Angels 27-22 -2 117 90 105 8 162 60.4%
Twins 29-19 1 114 83 102 -1 147 60.4%
Padres 30-17 3 95 83 98 13 121 92.5%
Brewers 30-18 2 103 86 82 -7 128 95.2%

After getting off to a great start to the season, the Angels have won just five of their last 15 games and were just swept by the Blue Jays in four games over the weekend. These struggles have coincided with injuries to two key players: Anthony Rendon, who was sidelined with wrist inflammation on Friday, and Taylor Ward, who missed nearly a week with a shoulder injury.

The Brewers split a four-game series against the Cardinals over the weekend and swept a doubleheader against the Cubs on Monday but suffered two big losses with injuries to Freddy Peralta and Brandon Woodruff. Their sixth-ranked prospect, Ethan Small, made his first major league start yesterday but is likely just a stop-gap measure until Woodruff can return. The good news for Milwaukee is that its schedule in June isn’t too difficult, and both Willy Adames and Hunter Renfroe should be returning from the IL imminently.

Tier 3 – Solid Contenders
Team Record “Luck” wRC+ SP- RP- RAA Team Quality Playoff Odds
Rays 28-19 3 103 87 110 5 115 69.4%
Blue Jays 27-20 4 99 86 104 3 119 93.3%
Cardinals 26-21 -2 107 102 104 1 113 50.1%
Red Sox 23-25 -4 111 103 105 0 116 34.0%
Marlins 19-26 -5 104 102 91 7 134 9.0%
Giants 25-21 0 112 95 108 -14 109 67.4%
Guardians 19-24 -4 101 109 92 6 114 10.5%

The Red Sox had won four series in a row until getting beat three times in five tries by the lowly Orioles over the weekend. Still, they’ve come alive with 13 wins in their last 20 games, scoring nearly seven runs per game during that stretch and posting double-digit run totals five times. Trevor Story has been getting all the attention, and he should after blasting nine home runs and driving in 27 runs in that span. Not to be out-done, Rafael Devers and J.D. Martinez have both collected 33 hits during the same period.

Despite getting a bit healthier recently, the Giants have struggled to keep up in the competitive NL West, winning just six of their last 15 games and dropping a weekend series in Cincinnati. The biggest storyline to come out of that disappointing showing against the Reds was the slap heard across baseball, with those pre-game shenanigans between Tommy Pham and Joc Pederson overshadowing a club that’s floundered recently. There really isn’t one glaring issue, either — just a bit of bad luck and some expected regression after an otherworldly 2021.

Like the Marlins above them, the Guardians look a lot better on paper than their actual results might tell you; they’ve won just five of their last 15 games, but their run differential is still +10 on the season. A diminished Shane Bieber has continued to lead their young pitching staff, but the biggest problem recently has been their lineup. Filled with plenty of youngsters, Cleveland has had a hard time scoring runs consistently, with Steven Kwan, Andrés Giménez, and Owen Miller all cooling off considerably after hot starts to the season. Luckily, José Ramírez has continued to carry the team; he’s blasted six home runs during this down stretch.

Tier 4 – The Melee
Team Record “Luck” wRC+ SP- RP- RAA Team Quality Playoff Odds
Braves 23-25 0 97 101 85 -8 96 66.5%
Rangers 22-24 -2 95 107 102 -9 65 4.1%
Phillies 21-27 -3 101 90 101 -16 90 22.6%
Mariners 20-28 -2 111 116 108 3 105 8.0%
Cubs 19-27 -3 96 111 93 -3 87 1.0%
Diamondbacks 23-26 3 91 104 111 10 76 1.4%
White Sox 23-23 5 89 98 110 -13 55 63.4%

The Braves are stuck at .500; they’re 5–5 over their last 10 games, 10–10 over their last 20, and 15–15 over their last 30. They haven’t been able to build any sort of momentum this year and find themselves in a distant second place in the NL East but within striking distance of a Wild Card spot. Atlanta’s outfield has been a big problem, even with the return of Ronald Acuña Jr.; looking for any sort of spark, the team called up No. 4 prospect Michael Harris II over the weekend.

The Rangers are finally playing some good baseball, winning three of four in Oakland over the weekend. Marcus Semien hit his first two home runs of the season — against his former team no less. Now a game under .500, things are starting to look more promising.

The White Sox just can’t catch a break. After playing through tons of injuries to key players last year, the same bug has hit them this season, too. Tim Anderson left Sunday’s game with a groin strain and will join Luis Robert and Eloy Jiménez on the IL. The former should be back soon, along with Lance Lynn, who will fill the hole in their rotation that was created when they designated Dallas Keuchel for assignment. More worryingly, they’ve scored just 167 runs this season; you can’t blame injuries for all of that underperformance.

Tier 5 – Hope Deferred
Team Record “Luck” wRC+ SP- RP- RAA Team Quality Playoff Odds
Orioles 20-29 1 88 122 90 -5 62 0.1%
Tigers 17-29 2 77 108 84 -1 69 0.7%
Athletics 20-30 0 83 111 100 1 57 0.0%
Rockies 21-26 2 93 105 108 -14 55 0.2%
Royals 16-30 0 92 127 116 6 56 0.3%
Nationals 18-31 -1 96 128 97 -14 54 0.1%
Pirates 19-27 5 85 116 110 -4 39 0.2%
Reds 16-31 -2 85 127 108 -6 25 0.4%

All credit to the Reds, who have played their way out of their exclusive tier and joined a huge group of underwhelming teams at the bottom of the rankings. Last week, Cincinnati split a four-game series with the Cubs, dropping a 20-run bomb on them on Thursday, and then beat the Giants twice over the weekend. Despite everything that happened during their ugly April, the Reds have been sort of enjoyable to watch over these last few weeks.

A team that’s been considerably less enjoyable to watch recently has been the Royals. They’ve won four of their last 15 games and have allowed an AL worst 247 runs this season. At least Bobby Witt Jr. has been fun to watch as he’s grown more comfortable at the plate as the season has worn on. MJ Melendez has hit well, too. Maybe Vinnie Pasquantino will get called up soon; he’s currently dominating Triple-A. But even with all those young prospects making their debuts, Kansas City’s pitching has been atrocious. It’s hard to be optimistic about the future when the pitching staff hasn’t shown any progress whatsoever.

Complete Power Rankings
Rank Team Record “Luck” wRC+ SP- RP- RAA Team Quality Playoff Odds Δ
1 Dodgers 33-14 -3 120 76 82 -6 165 98.9% 3
2 Astros 30-18 1 108 91 79 14 165 97.9% 0
3 Yankees 33-15 0 111 74 81 -4 154 97.5% -2
4 Mets 32-17 1 115 95 94 0 149 94.5% -1
5 Angels 27-22 -2 117 90 105 8 162 60.4% 0
6 Twins 29-19 1 114 83 102 -1 147 60.4% 1
7 Brewers 30-18 2 103 86 82 -7 128 95.2% -1
8 Padres 30-17 3 95 83 98 13 121 92.5% 0
9 Rays 28-19 3 103 87 110 5 115 69.4% 1
10 Blue Jays 27-20 4 99 86 104 3 119 93.3% 3
11 Cardinals 26-21 -2 107 102 104 1 113 50.1% -2
12 Red Sox 23-25 -4 111 103 105 0 116 34.0% 4
13 Marlins 19-26 -5 104 102 91 7 134 9.0% -1
14 Giants 25-21 0 112 95 108 -14 109 67.4% -3
15 Guardians 19-24 -4 101 109 92 6 114 10.5% 0
16 Braves 23-25 0 97 101 85 -8 96 66.5% 2
17 Rangers 22-24 -2 95 107 102 -9 65 4.1% 7
18 Phillies 21-27 -3 101 90 101 -16 90 22.6% -4
19 Mariners 20-28 -2 111 116 108 3 105 8.0% 2
20 Cubs 19-27 -3 96 111 93 -3 87 1.0% 0
21 Diamondbacks 23-26 3 91 104 111 10 76 1.4% -2
22 White Sox 23-23 5 89 98 110 -13 55 63.4% -5
23 Orioles 20-29 1 88 122 90 -5 62 0.1% 2
24 Tigers 17-29 2 77 108 84 -1 69 0.7% 3
25 Athletics 20-30 0 83 111 100 1 57 0.0% -2
26 Rockies 21-26 2 93 105 108 -14 55 0.2% -4
27 Royals 16-30 0 92 127 116 6 56 0.3% -1
28 Nationals 18-31 -1 96 128 97 -14 54 0.1% 1
29 Pirates 19-27 5 85 116 110 -4 39 0.2% -1
30 Reds 16-31 -2 85 127 108 -6 25 0.4% 0





Jake Mailhot is a contributor to FanGraphs. A long-suffering Mariners fan, he also writes about them for Lookout Landing. Follow him on Twitter @jakemailhot.

31 Comments
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Nick Smithmember
1 month ago

I don’t want to be pedantic* but (even though Trea Turner’s streak has since come to an end) wasn’t he at the end of a 22-game streak and in the midst of a 22+n hitting streak?

*This is a lie.

mikejuntmember
1 month ago
Reply to  Nick Smith

I suppose if you want to get really pedantic, the rankings are through Sunday and we know he extended the streak on Monday, so the Trea Turner of these rankings is ‘in the midst’ of a 22 game streak.

For extra pedantry, I enjoyed how the Dodgers broadcast yesterday kept referring to Turner’s streak as “the longest of this season” because, at one point earlier this year, he had a 27 game streak – but it stretched back to 2021. So the 22 games is the longest streak in 2022, but not the longest active streak in the 2022 season (and yet, by the same guy!)

Last edited 1 month ago by mikejunt
Nick Smithmember
1 month ago
Reply to  mikejunt

It was more of a riff on the fact that we don’t know when a streak will end, so calling any point in the present of the streak “the midst” seems odd to me.

formerly matt w
1 month ago
Reply to  Nick Smith

“midst” doesn’t need to literally mean midpoint; think of the end of The Hunting of the Snark:
In the midst of the word he was trying to say,
   In the midst of his laughter and glee,
He had softly and suddenly vanished away—
   For the Snark was a Boojum, you see.

He was at the midpoint of the word he was trying to say (he only got halfway through “Boojum”), but he was not at the midpoint of his laughter and glee, which ended the moment he softly and suddenly vanished away. “Midst” is often used this way, to mean “in progress.”

There’s an interesting distinction here between things that have a natural endpoint that may not be reached, like saying the word “Boojum,” and things that don’t, like laughter and glee. Think of “I was walking to school and I saw a rabbit”; did I then proceed to school, or did I give up to look at the rabbit? There are some languages like Russian (I think) where there are different verb forms for these two cases! This is known in linguistics as “aspect,” and I don’t know how it works for things like a 22-game hitting streak, which have natural endpoints but whose endpoints we don’t know until they’re completed.

Nick Smithmember
1 month ago

That makes sense, thanks!