Seattle Mariners

John McGrath’s MLB power rankings

Minnesota’s Brian Dozier (2) was a late addition to American League’s All-Star Game roster, and he’s generating some momentum as an MVP candidate.
Minnesota’s Brian Dozier (2) was a late addition to American League’s All-Star Game roster, and he’s generating some momentum as an MVP candidate. The Associated Press

1. St. Louis Cardinals (1): Matt Holliday’s return from quad injury gives Cards still more outfield options.

2. Kansas City Royals (2): Defending AL champs ended tumultuous first half with league’s best record.

3. Pittsburgh Pirates (3): Buoyed by consecutive wild card berths, Bucs not lacking confidence to overtake St. Louis as best team of MLB’s best division.

4. Los Angeles Dodgers (4): Dodgers desperate for back-of-the-rotation starters, and could be tempted to deal enigmatic outfielder Yasiel Puig.

5. Washington Nationals (5): Manager Matt Williams wanted to give ace Max Scherzer extended rest at the break, setting up classic Sunday duel vs. Dodgers’ Zack Grienke.

6. Los Angeles Angels (7): Team is in market for a bat — specifically, a left-handed-hitting left fielder — and what the Angels want, the Angels usually get.

7. Minnesota Twins (8): Second baseman Brian Dozier, a late addition to All-Star Game roster, generating momentum as an MVP candidate.

8. New York Yankees (10): Injuries limited ex-Mariners shortstop Brendan Ryan to six games and 13 at-bats during first half.

9. Houston Astros (6): Luis Valbuena, another former Mariners infielder, finished first half with a .199 batting average, but get this: 19 of his 57 hits were homers.

10. Chicago Cubs (9): With call-up of catcher Kyle Schwarber, a 2014 first-rounder, Cubs lineup vs. Braves included four rookies Friday night.

11. New York Mets (15): John Smoltz, part of the 1990s trio of Hall of Fame Braves’ starters, on the Mets rotation: “They’ve got more talent than we could ever have.”

12. San Francisco Giants (16): Rotation figures to get crowded with return of the Tims — Lincecum and Hudson.

13. Tampa Bay Rays (17): Despite putting 19 players on disabled list since opening day, Rays had winning record at the break.

14. Detroit Tigers (12): David Price followed Scherzer as second consecutive Tigers pitcher credited with All-Star Game victory.

15. Baltimore Orioles (14): Nobody was more in need of a four-day midsummer break than skidding Orioles.

16. Toronto Blue Jays (13): First-half finale — an 11-10 defeat to the Royals — serves as 2015 microcosm for crazy-hitting but pitching-starved Jays.

17. Cleveland Indians (20): Rookie third baseman Giovanny Urshela latest prospect to reach bigs from talent-rich Colombia.

18. Boston Red Sox (19): Super utilityman Brock Holt first player chosen for All-Star Game after starting at seven or more positions before the break.

19. Atlanta Braves (18): Despite trying season in wake of roster-clearance trades, Braves committed to manager Fredi Gonzalez and his staff through 2016.

20. Texas Rangers (21): Manager Jeff Banister on team’s 5-15 slump before the break: “We’ve already washed those games off.”

21. Arizona Diamondbacks (11): D-Backs went to the last minute before persuading Vanderbilt shortstop Dansby Swanson — the first overall pick of last month’s raft — to agree to a $6.5 million signing bonus.

22. Chicago White Sox (22): Already? Sox this weekend are celebrating 10-year anniversary of 2005 World Series championship.

23. Seattle Mariners (23): Corner infielder D.J. Peterson, the M’s No. 2 prospect, rebounding from abysmal spring in Double A.

24. San Diego Padres (21): AL scout on inconsistent, underachieving Padres: “It looks like the parts are greater than the sum.”

25. Cincinnati Reds (24): Typical snoozer All-Star Game will be remembered for triple-digit heat of reliever Aroldis Chapman.

26. Oakland A’s (25): With 28 errors at the break, shortstop Marcus Semien already has third-most miscues in Oakland history.

27. Colorado Rockies (27): Slick second baseman DJ LeMahieu showcased All-Star glove in Cincinnati.

28. Milwaukee Brewers (28): Last name of rookie pitching sensation Taylor Jungmann pronounced “Young Man.”

29. Miami Marlins (29): Pitchers Mat Latos and Dan Haren, pending free agents, drawing interest before trade deadline.

30. Philadelphia Phillies (30): Starting pitcher Aaron Nola, a 2014 draft choice from LSU, set to make debut Tuesday vs. Reds.

john.mcgrath@thenewstribune.com

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