Ever since the Dodgers did their best Cleveland Spiders impression for several weeks -- and they've now lost Corey Seager for a while -- Major League Baseball is lacking a truly dominant team. To be clear, there are several very impressive ballclubs and by no means am I complaining. I'm just thinking out loud here regarding the influx of 100-win teams in recent years. There have only been eight seasons in history with at least three teams reaching 100 wins. Three of them came in the last three full seasons (2017, 2018 and 2019). Three teams reached 37 wins last year and that was a 100-win pace.
In looking at the landscape this season, I'm getting a strong feeling we won't see multiple teams get there. As things currently stand, there are zero teams playing at a 100-win pace (the White Sox are closest at 99.63 wins at their current pace). Even if there were one or two, it's awfully difficult to maintain that type of pace over the course of 162.
Just look toward the top of the standings and notice the lack of a truly great team this season.
- The Red Sox rotation is fine, but it doesn't even resemble one that would make you think "best team in baseball." Also, see their team comment below.
- The White Sox have already lost 2/3 of their outfield for nearly the whole season.
- The Giants have a pretty homer-heavy offense that isn't very likely to be sustained. They just split with the Pirates, not too long after losing a series to the Rockies.
- The A's have a negative run differential and started the season 1-7.
- The Dodgers lost 14 of 18 at one point and, again, are now without one of their best players for a while.
- The Astros had a stretch where they lost nine of 10.
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Up and down the league, we can find pretty fatal flaws with every team if we wanted to pick them apart. Some of the teams toward the bottom of the standings aren't nearly as horrible as the bad teams were in 2017-19 and several (I'm looking in your direction, Twins) should be better than they've played.
Parity, mediocrity, whatever. The point is, there isn't much separation between the best teams and the worst teams right now, making my job as the Internet's Most Official Power Ranker a bit more tough.
This isn't bad news at all. In fact, I think it's great news. We're bound to see tighter standings heading down the stretch, incredible playoff races and hopefully an epic October.
|Is the MVP starting to get *that* hot again? In his last 11 games, Jose Abreu is hitting .395 with three doubles, a triple, three homers and 14 RBI.||1||58-95|
|Is he back? Jose Altuve has an 11-game hitting streak, during which he's hitting .400 with two doubles, three homers and more walks than strikeouts.||9||85-68|
|Keep an eye out here. After a tough series the first part of this week with the Astros, the A's have what looks to be a very favorable schedule through the middle of June.||1||46-106|
|Since their 16-9 start, the Red Sox are 9-8 with eight of their wins coming against the Rangers, Tigers, Orioles and Angels.||3||75-78|
|If things continue on this path, it's possible the Giants would have three starting pitchers make the All-Star team, in Kevin Gausman, Anthony DeSclafani and Alex Wood. Just like we all predicted before the season started, right?||--||76-76|
|Half their regular position players are down due to COVID protocols and the Padres still swept the first-place Cardinals. Big kudos.||2||75-78|
|If you're into this sort of thing, Jack Flaherty is on pace to clear 20 wins rather easily (he's 7-0 in eight starts). The Cardinals haven't had a non-Wainwright 20-game winner since 2005 (Chris Carpenter).||4||67-86|
|They are playing good baseball and now get a crack at the Red Sox, Rays and Yankees, consecutively. *EYES EMOJI*||4||85-67|
|It felt like they were getting their mojo back with Gavin Lux's clutch eighth-inning homer on Tuesday kickstarting a four-game winning streak. But then they lost Seager and left a small village on base on Sunday. We'll see.||10||93-58|
|Well look at that. The Yankees finally toppled the Rays. They haven't lost a series since April 16-18 (against, yes, the Rays).||--||76-76|
|Here's a weird factoid: Among teams currently above .500, the only ones the Rays have won series against are both from New York.||2||94-60|
|Zach Plesac appears to be back on track after a rough start. He has a 1.53 ERA while holding opponents to a .131/.202/.212 line in his last four starts. He even flirted with a no-hitter last time out.||6||72-81|
|Terrible weekend, but they are dealing with a rash of injuries and are still in first place. Take some deep breaths, Mets fans. It's a marathon.||6||71-81|
|Look, it's still not even June, but I feel like you could have made a lot of money betting against the Braves being above .500 to this point. Yes, heading to May 19 at the earliest, the Braves still haven't had a winning record at any point in 2021.||1||97-55|
|They're banged up and had a bit of a rough weekend that included a quick argument in the dugout between the manager and second baseman. It's ultimately not that big a deal. Things happen over the course of 162. They are still over .500 in a very winnable division.||1||83-69|
|It sounds like Christian Yelich will be back pretty soon. They desperately need him to help their ailing offense, which has been the main culprit in them winning just four of their last 14 games.||1||87-66|
|There will be slumps and the .167 average/on-base percentage right now doesn't look good, but Jarred Kelenic is one of those guys. You know what I'm talking about. You see him and you just feel the "it" factor. He's got it.||4||84-68|
|Salvaging a split in Colorado isn't as bad as it might sound. The Rockies are 13-12 at home. Overall, though, the Reds have been mostly uninspiring since their 6-1 start.||2||79-75|
|The rotation has been the biggest problem, but there have been good signs recently from Kyle Hendricks and Zach Davies.||2||79-73|
|Good ol' Jon Lester is rocking a 2.25 ERA through three starts and this week will take a start in Wrigley Field. Obviously, it'll be his first start in the ballpark as an opponent since becoming the most important free-agent signee in franchise history.||3||68-85|
|Jesus Aguilar is having a really nice year. He just went 9 for 17 with three doubles, three homers and seven RBI in their four-game series in Arizona and has been hovering around the NL RBI lead all season.||3||79-74|
|The Angels had lost 10 of 13 before their last-gasp comeback victory Sunday in Boston (thank the lord for Shohei Ohtani, right, Angels fans?).||4||69-84|
|Boy, 11-game losing streaks really do a number on that record, huh?||1||51-102|
|I'll admit I thought Madison Bumgarner was cooked. I thought his first three starts this season reinforced that notion. In his last five starts, though, he is 4-0 with a 0.90 ERA, 0.47 WHIP and 34 strikeouts against just two walks in 30 innings.||2||81-72|
|Last week, I touted the Rangers as having fought hard to reach .500. They went 0-6 as an encore.||5||84-68|
|The Orioles were a capable non-contender for a bit, but they've now lost seven of their last nine.||1||95-57|
|You know who has been sneaky-great this year? Bryan Reynolds is hitting .299/.396/.474 and by both versions of WAR has been one of the more valuable position players in baseball to this point.||1||71-81|
|All the attention here when it comes to the trade market is on shortstop Trevor Story and it makes sense. Just don't sleep on Jon Gray. He's rocking a 2.93 ERA right now, including a 2.00 ERA in six starts in Coors Field.||1||56-96|
|Another blown game on Sunday and the Twins are now sitting with the worst record in all of baseball.||2||81-72|
|Hey, look! Signs of life. The Tigers have won five of their last seven. Before that, they were mired in a stretch where they went 3-18.||--||71-81|