1. St. Louis Cardinals (1): Roster expansion in September will enable Cards to keep pitching arms fresh for October.
2. Kansas City Royals (2): With division title virtually assured, challenge for Royals will be stay focused and feisty.
3. Pittsburgh Pirates (3): Since 2013 season opener, Bucs’ lineup has featured 14 different cleanup hitters.
4. Los Angeles Dodgers (6): Trade that sent Hector Olivera to Atlanta means Dodgers are paying $87.5 million to ex-Dodgers.
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5. New York Yankees (4): Didi Gregorius has made smooth transition to full-time shortstop in footsteps of Derek Jeter.
6. Houston Astros (5): In first 19 games after All-Star break, rookie shortstop Carlos Correa had seven homers and 17 RBIs.
7. Chicago Cubs (10): Of team’s touted quartet of rookie position players, catcher Kyle Schwarber appears most advanced at plate.
8. San Francisco Giants (7): Weekend series at Cubs is first of eight straight for Giants against first-place teams or wild card candidates.
9. New York Mets (12): Surge to first place is legit, and seven-time All-Star third baseman David Wright should be back on the field by the end of the month.
10. Toronto Blue Jays (13): Major moves at deadline paying off for Jays, who had losing record as recently as July 28.
11. Los Angeles Angels (8): Wild comeback victory Wednesday over Tribe prevented Angels from losing for 11th time in 13 games.
12. Washington Nationals (9): Stephen Strasburg’s return to rotation puts struggling Doug Fister in bullpen as long reliever.
13. Baltimore Orioles (14): Hot-and-cold Chris Davis went into weekend with bat scorching.
14. Texas Rangers (19): Adrian Beltre first player to hit for cycle three times in a career since Babe Herman did it with 1933 Cubs.
16. Minnesota Twins (11): Torii Hunter on debacle at Toronto, where Twins were outscored 26-12 during a four-game sweep: “We got crushed.”
17. Tampa Bay Rays (15): When teammates pulled a fun prank on Richie Shaffer — they huddled in dugout after the rookie collected his first career hit, a home run — Shaffer responded with a classic, self-congratulatory pantomime.
18. Detroit Tigers (16): Ex-general manager Dave Dombrowski will get another chance to successfully overhaul a roster and farm system. That chance could come in Seattle.
19. Arizona Diamondbacks (17): No. 1 overall draft pick Dansby Swanson reported to be “frustrated” by lingering concussion symptoms sustained from July 23 beaning.
20. Chicago White Sox (18): Slick-fielding second baseman Carlos Sanchez, 23, adding some offense to his game.
21. San Diego Padres (20): Once-promising 10-game trip concluded with a clunker series in Milwaukee.
22. Seattle Mariners (24): Everett AquaSox reliever Luiz Gohara, winner of Short-A All-Star Game in Spokane, resembles a 19-year old version of CC Sabathia.
23. Cleveland Indians (21): Rookie third baseman Giovanny Urshela auditioning for permanent job in 2016.
24. Cincinnati Reds (22): Todd Frazier latest Home Run Derby champ to lose mojo after All-Star break.
25. Atlanta Braves (23): Cameron Maybin’s throwback stirrups — a very cool look for anybody who grew up wearing stirrups — annoyed team’s fashion police.
26. Boston Red Sox (26): Larry Lucchino, who plans to step down as team president, only man known to have won a World Series ring (one in Baltimore, three in Boston), a Super Bowl ring (Washington, 1983) and a Final Four watch (Princeton, 1965).
27. Milwaukee Brewers (28): Kyle Lohse’s demotion to bullpen suggests his days in Milwaukee are numbered.
28. Colorado Rockies (27): Rookie left fielder Kyle Parker, a former Clemson quarterback, played against Russell Wilson in college before becoming a baseball teammate at Single-A Asheville (North Carolina).
29. Miami Marlins (28): Recuperating Zack Cosart, Marlins’ No. 5 starter in April, hoping vertigo problems are behind him.
30. Philadelphia Phillies (30): Disappointing outfielder Domonic Brown making late bid to remain part of Phils’ future.