MLB Power Rankings: Week 3

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MLB Power Rankings: Week 3

Every Monday throughout the regular season, we'll be ranking all 30 MLB teams -- take a look and offer up your thoughts in the comments or to us on twitter @CubsTalkCSN or @WhiteSoxTalkCSN.

Previous rankings: Preseason Week 1 Week 2

Tony
JJ Comments 1

Tony: Simply dominating. Offense is cray.
JJ: Hamilton slugging 103 points higher than Napoli, who's at .673.
2

Tony: Can't fall if they keep winning series.
JJ: Yadier Molina looks like a legit offensive threat.
3

Tony: Need to find more consistency.
JJ: Stephen Strasburg Productions presents baseball in the groin.
4

Tony: Holy cow, can they pitch.
JJ: Not a great run differential.
5

Tony: They can still bring the hammer on offense.
JJ: Scored 90 runs; still care too much about Jesus Montero.
6

Tony: Kemp, Ethier an awesome 1-2 punch right now.
JJ: Freddie Freeman fuels fantastic flurry of runs.
7

Tony: Just wait 'til Matt Moore gets going.
JJ: Haven't been super impressive, but very solid.
8

Tony: Almost got swept by the A's? Yu serious, bro?
JJ: Matt Kemp? Yeah, he's good.
9

Tony: Still love these Canadians.
JJ: Someday, Albert Pujols will homer, and they'll take off.
10

Tony: What hurts more, the Lee injury or an MWP elbow?
JJ: Living proof that pitcher W-L records are meaningless.
11

Tony: Doing great...until they choke late again.
JJ: Things are looking up with great pitching, Dunn succeeding.
12

Tony: Can we call the AL playoff race the Humber Games?
JJ: Bad pitching, okay offense. Still think they're average.
13

Tony: Hudson's DL stint will really hurt.
JJ: West looks wide open this year.
14

Tony: Stellar lefties abound in lineup and bullpen.
JJ: Lincecum has a 10.54 ERA and 3.38 FIP. He'll be okay.
15

Tony: Will go as far as their rotation will take them.
JJ: Pitching allowing too many homers.
16

Tony: Nothin' special right now.
JJ: Not gonna pass Detroit, but will be pesky.
17

Tony: Can any pro sports team match this mess & drama?
JJ: Offense has been putrid - only three teams have lower OBPs.
18

Tony: They'll hang around in AL Central.
JJ: Top-10 offense, bottom-5 pitching so far.
19

Tony: Have won three straight series.
JJ: Finally starting to put some things together.
20

Tony: Just wait 'til Ike Davis gets going.
JJ: 2.99 team ERA, .284 team OBP.
21

Tony: Could challenge Boston for drama before 2012 is over.
JJ: Pitching has been surprisingly good.
22

Tony: Where would they be if they just scored runs?
JJ: This may be as high as they'll be ranked this year.
23

Tony: How have they hung around this long?
JJ: Seriously. Enter Monday with a 10 run differential.
24

Tony: Moneyball is kinda money so far.
JJ: No team has allowed more runs than them, and it's not close. 25

Tony: Mauer, Morneau looking like old.
JJ: Only Texas has allowed fewer runs, but they can't score.
26

Tony: Still think they're better than record.
JJ: Have scored double the runs of Pittsburgh.
27

Tony: SP Luebke becoming piece to build around.
JJ: -22 run differential worst in NL. 28

Tony: Sigh. I feel for Kansas City.
JJ: Well, I guess there's nowhere to go but up after Saturday.
29

Tony: Their offenses is just offensive.
JJ: Eat away your sorrows at Stroud'sOklahoma Joe's.
30

Tony: How in the name of Jeff Bagwell do they have six wins?
JJ: Liriano, pitching staff an absolute mess.

Report: White Sox make James Shields available for trade

Report: White Sox make James Shields available for trade

With the Aug. 1 trade deadline right around the corner, a new name has been added to the mix.

James Shields, who was acquired by the White Sox in early June, is reportedly available for trade, according to Jon Morosi of MLB Network, after the 34-year-old right-hander has pitched his way into the trade market with his latest hot streak.

The White Sox traded for Shields in an effort to strengthen their rotation and alleviate some pressure off a taxed bullpen, but with the team six games back for the division lead and the final wild card spot, it would be wise of the White Sox to take advantage of this pitcher's market and flip Shields for assets that can help them in the future.

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After a rough start in Chicago, Shields has turned in five quality starts in his last five outings, which included a stellar performance in Tuesday's 3-0 win over the Cubs. He also owns a 1.71 ERA across his last six starts.

The biggest question will be, which team wants to take on Shields' contract?

He still has two years remaining on a four-year, $75 million deal he inked with the San Diego Padres in 2014. It's worth noting Shields has an opt-out clause after this season, and a club option to return in 2019.

White Sox likely will place 2B Brett Lawrie on disabled list

White Sox likely will place 2B Brett Lawrie on disabled list

The White Sox will "probably" place second baseman Brett Lawrie on the disabled list before Wednesday’s Crosstown game at Wrigley Field, manager Robin Ventura said.

Lawrie initially was diagnosed with a tight left hamstring July 21 against the Detroit Tigers, causing a firestorm of speculation he had been traded when he was removed from the game. He was initially considered day-to-day after undergoing an MRI on Friday, and manager Robin Ventura said before both Monday and Tuesday’s games against the Cubs he could’ve been available in an emergency. 

But Lawrie suffered a setback sometime Tuesday, and with two games under National League rules at Wrigley Field requiring more bench pieces, Ventura didn’t want to head to Clark and Addison short-handed. 

“It just seemed like he was going backwards today, during the game, of his knee,” Ventura said. “There's no way you can go over there and play the National League rules with nobody on the bench.”

[MORE: Shields picks up bullpen as White Sox top Cubs again]

Infielder Carlos Sanchez was removed from Triple-A Charlotte’s game Tuesday night and is expected to replace Lawrie on the White Sox roster. 

Lawrie is hitting .248/.310/.413 with 12 home runs and 22 doubles over 94 games this season. 

Tyler Saladino has done well in his short stint in the starting lineup since Lawrie’s injury, going 4-15 with a walk. His walk-off single on Monday netted the White Sox their third win in what now is a four-game winning streak, the team’s first since May 6-9.

Tonight on CSN: Crosstown Classic shifts back to Wrigley Field

Tonight on CSN: Crosstown Classic shifts back to Wrigley Field

The Crosstown Classic continues on Wednesday at Wrigley Field as the White Sox square off against the Cubs on CSN Chicago. Coverage begins with White Sox Pregame Live at 6 p.m. Be sure to stick around after the final out to get analysis and player reaction on White Sox Postgame Live.

Today’s starting pitching matchup: Anthony Ranaudo (1-0, 17.18) vs. Jason Hammel (9-5, 3.35)

Click here for a game preview to make sure you’re ready for the action.

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