Things are stabilizing as the season grinds on [MLB Power Rankings]
This week, the bottom 11 teams are all in the same spot they were in last week, showing that perhaps those teams are what we think they are.
The biggest movers this week: the Rangers and Blue Jays, who both moved up 7 spots. The Braves dropped 4 spots, giving them the ignominious honor of the farthest fall of the week.
Without further ado, here are your MLB Power Rankings for week 12:
1. St. Louis Cardinals (47-29) [Last week: 1] - The Cardinals are coming off a 3-game losing streak, but they're still the best team in baseball thus far, and lead an extremely formidable NL Central, which boasts the three best W/L records in baseball.
2. Boston Red Sox (45-33) [LW: 3] - After an excellent start to the season, Jon Lester is becoming a serious concern as of late. Since May 20, he has a 7.30 ERA, and opponents have a .985 OPS against him.
3. Texas Rangers (44-32) [LW: 10] - Well that was quick. The Rangers jump up quite a few spots after last week's epic performance, in which they reeled off 5 straight wins and proved that they're still a force to be reckoned with.
4. Cincinnati Reds (45-32) [LW: 4] - The Reds are in 3rd place in the NL Central, but would be in 1st in any other division in baseball. This is all despite seemingly constant injuries issues with their #1 starter Johnny Cueto.
5. Pittsburgh Pirates (46-30) [LW: 6] - The Pirates have only scored 293 runs this year, which is by far the least among the top teams. Not coincidentally, they've only given up 264 runs, tied with the Braves for the stingiest pitching staff in all of baseball.
6. Atlanta Braves (44-33) [LW: 2] - Justin Upton's average has dipped all the way down to .240 on the season, but it still doesn't even come close to rivaling his brother BJ, who is hitting at an abysmal .175 pace. This brother duo isn't exactly what they were expecting.
7. Oakland Athletics (44-34) [LW: 5] - The A's are 3-7 in their last ten games, which allowed the streaking Rangers to overtake them in the AL West. They'll need to turn things around, because that wild card tiebreaker is no fun at all.
8. Detroit Tigers (42-32) [LW: 7] - The Tigers' +82 run differential is the best in the American League, and trails only the Cardinals in all of baseball. Somehow, they're still a losing team on the road, with a 16-19 record away from Detroit.
9. Baltimore Orioles (42-34) [LW: 8] - The Orioles are tied with the Red Sox and Rockies for the most runs scored in all of baseball, which is a bit of an unusual position for them. But guys like Manny Machado, Adam Jones, Nick Markakis and Chris Davis are tearing the cover off the ball.
10. New York Yankees (41-34) [LW: 9] - The Yankees trail the Red Sox by 2.5 games in the AL East, and they're still not running on all cylinders. This team scares me very much, as a Red Sox fan. I'll be keeping my eye on them.
11. Arizona Diamondbacks (41-34) [LW: 11] - Patrick Corbin's incredible season continues. He's 9-0 with a 2.19 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP. The rest of the D-Backs rotation, however, is a bit shaky at best. He'll need some help.
12. Toronto Blue Jays (38-36) [LW: 19] - After 11 straight wins, are the Blue Jays preparing to make a run in the AL East? They came in with high expectations, and perhaps they're finally starting to live up to them. In other news, Jose Reyes comes off the DL this week.
13. Colorado Rockies (39-38) [LW: 12] - The Rockies aren't exactly hot right now, but they're still sticking around, only 3 games behind the Diamondbacks. Carlos Gonzalez has a .995 OPS, which is better than normal for him.
14. Cleveland Indians (38-36) [LW: 15] - The Indians have only 12 saves as a team, which says an awful lot about their shaky closer situation. It's still a bit crazy, though, that they've had so few saves with 38 wins.
15. Tampa Bay Rays (39-37) [LW: 13] - David Price should be back soon, and that could help the Rays out a lot as they attempt to make a run. If he can come back strong, the Rays could definitely make the AL East very competitive.
16. San Francisco Giants (38-37) [LW: 14] - The Giants had a rough weekend, losing three out of four to the lowly Miami Marlins. Take heart, though, Giants fans. You only have three games left against that particularly juggernaut.
17. San Diego Padres (38-38) [LW: 16] - Edinson Volquez was supposed to be the Padres' ace, but with a 5.67 ERA and 1.60 WHIP, he has been anything but. In fact, he's probably lucky his record is only 5-6. It could (and should) be worse.
18. Kansas City Royals (35-38) [LW: 17] - Ervin Santana and James Shields have been pretty solid despite their combined 7-11 record. Jeremy Guthrie is 7-5 with far worse peripheral numbers, further proving that pitcher W/L record can be deceiving.
19. Washington Nationals (37-38) [LW: 18] - Eric already discussed the Nationals' struggles this year, and it looks like this year will be a long one for them. Still, there's a chance that they could come back. The season is still young.
20. Philadelphia Phillies (36-40) [LW: 20] - Cliff Lee is quietly having an incredible season, but most people won't notice due to the fact that the Phillies have been pretty much irrelevant for the entire season.
21. Minnesota Twins (34-38) [LW: 21] - Opposing hitters are batting .283 against the Twins' pitchers, which is the highest of any team. Joe Mauer is having a great season at the plate, but it doesn't matter if your pitching is garbage.
22. Los Angeles Angels (33-43) [LW: 22] - Josh Hamilton continues his assault on the Mendoza Line, with his average dropping to .207, desperately close to that threshold. At least Howie Kendrick is hitting the ball well, right?
23. Seattle Mariners (34-43) [LW: 23] - I just traded for Hisashi Iwakuma on one of my fantasy teams, so Mariners fans can look forward to seeing him struggle for the rest of the season. Sorry about that, guys.
24. Los Angeles Dodgers (32-42) [LW: 24] - The most expensive team of all time is currently sitting in last place in the not-so-impressive NL West. Red Sox fans are thrilled to see that Josh Beckett's streak of great seasons in odd-numbered years is over.
25. Chicago White Sox (31-42) [LW: 25] - The White Sox are the best team in Chicago... but just barely. The Windy City has seen better days, for sure. Chris Sale is a bright spot, and Jose Quintana shows promise.
26. Chicago Cubs (31-43) [LW: 26] - Nate Schierholtz is leading the team with a .296 average, which is the beginning of their troubles. Their starting pitching hasn't been terrible, leaving them around the league average in team ERA.
27. Milwaukee Brewers (31-43) [LW: 27] - Carlos Gomez is leading all of baseball right now with 4.9 WAR. If he could get some more help from his teammates, the Brewers might actually be able to do something. Although that NL Central is a tough place to play.
28. New York Mets (30-42) [LW: 28] - David Wright is 2nd in the NL in WAR, trailing only Gomez. He's having an incredible season, but his talents are almost being completely wasted on the Mets, who are otherwise pretty terrible at the plate.
29. Houston Astros (29-48) [LW: 29] - The Astros are almost catching up to the Mets, which says a lot more about the Mets than it does about the Astros, who still have one of the worst lineups in recent memory.
30. Miami Marlins (25-50) [LW: 30] - Even after taking three of four from the Giants, the Marlins are still the worst team in baseball, and it's not really even close. The Marlins have some potential, though, with pitchers like Jose Fernandez and Jacob Turner.
If you love these rankings, you're probably a smart baseball fan. If you hate them, let me know why, in the comments below.