MLB Power Rankings: 2014 Week 1

MLB Power Rankings: 2014 Week 1
April 7, 2014, 2:45 pm
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Tony Andracki and JJ Stankevitz

Baseball is back in full force and the first week was jam-packed with the typical craziness we've become accustomed to in Major League Baseball. Disclaimer: It's one week into the season. Don't get too high or low on any results just yet.

And with the start of the regular season comes another year of MLB Power Rankings from CSNChicago.com's Tony Andracki and JJ Stankevitz. Stay tuned for updated rankings every Monday throughout the 2014 campaign. We'll try to do this without blowing out our arms, since that's become such a trend lately.

Rank J.J.  
Tony Comment
1 Nationals Cardinals

JJ: Two bad starts for Strasburg look like some bad BABIP luck, still has a great K-rate.

Tony: Just an OK start, but I'm not about to overreact and drop them down.

2 Tigers Nationals

JJ: Torii Hunter homered in all three games of Detroit's series vs. Baltimore, drove in seven runs.

Tony: Funny, Strasburg is the only weak link on the pitching staff so far.
3  Dodgers Tigers

JJ: Kershaw's back remains a concern, especially with Giants looking really good so far.

Tony: Can't wait for the series with the Dodgers.
4 Cardinals Dodgers

JJ: Matt Adams ShoveGate was an entertaining storyline in the first week.

Tony: Looks like Kemp is back, y'all.
5 Braves Red Sox

JJ: Craig Kimbrel is still really good: Six K's in three shutout innings so far.

Tony: Brewers crashed the World Series party in a big way.
6 Rays Rays

JJ: Liking the lineup -- and that's with Wil Myers off to a slow start.

Tony: Offense looks good and league-leading .357 OBP is sustainable with this patient lineup.
7 Giants Braves

JJ: Bought them preseason, now buying them even more after first week. Good lineup, good pitching.

Tony: They've given up just 9 runs in 6 games. Unreal.
8 Red Sox Rangers

JJ: Did selfies jump the shark when Big Papi took one with Obama? MY COLUMN:

Tony: Elvis Andrus leads the team in HR right now...
9 Pirates A's

JJ: Top prospect Jameson Taillon undergoing Tommy John really hurts organizational pitching depth.

Tony: This starting staff looks like it will be just fine.
10 A's Giants

JJ: You see something new every day in baseball, example 1.

Tony: I ranked them too low in preseason. This is my apology.
11 Rangers Pirates

JJ: Your first-week MVP: Shin-Soo Choo, for choosing "Turn Down for What" as his at-bat music.

Tony: Every game is going to be a close game for them.
12 Brewers Indians

JJ: Buying them early. If Braun's thumb holds up, these guys could surprise a bit.

Tony: Love the Kipnis deal. Very smart investment.
13 Mariners Reds

JJ: Justin Smoak is 27 and has a career OPS of .704, so his hot start (.995 OPS) is probably an aberration until proven otherwise over the summer.

Tony: How early is too early to call Hamilton a bust?
14 Indians Royals

JJ: Unless you're a Michigan fan, this was pretty cool.

Tony: They haven't hit a home run yet. Typical Royals.
15 Blue Jays Angels

JJ: 35-year-old Mark Buehrle struck out 11 in his first start, just the second time he's had double-digit K's in his 15-year career.

Tony: Hey Josh Hamilton is back. That's cool.
16 Reds White Sox

JJ: Mat Latos gave up a homer to Kris Bryant (in a Double-A rehab start) this week, which should be music to the ears of all you Cubs fans.

Tony: Chris Sale, AL Cy Young. I'm callin' it.
17 Royals Yankees

JJ: We're just one week in and Ned Yost is getting ripped for managerial decisions. Baseball is back!

Tony: They're old, so it makes sense it took them a few games to get going.
18 Yankees Orioles

JJ: This doesn't look encouraging.

Tony: Nelson Cruz looks like he could be most underrated signing of winter.
19 Angels Mariners

JJ: Maybe Simon said "get swept by the Mariners."

Tony: So weird to see them actually scoring runs.
20 Orioles Brewers

JJ:  Fun with early-season stats: In 2 1/3 IP, 100 percent of fly balls hit off reliever Ryan Webb have gone for home runs (he's given up one homer this year).

Tony: If Gallardo keeps this up, watch out, everybody.
21 Marlins Blue Jays

JJ: Don't think Casey McGehee will keep hitting near .500, but might as well ride the wave while it lasts.

Tony: Somebody should test Melky Cabrera again...
22 Padres Mets

JJ: Andrew Cashner (3.09 ERA in 2013) is off to a fine start to the season: 11 Ks, 3 ER in 12 IP.

Tony: Ike Davis, FTW!
23 Rockies Padres

JJ: "Grandpa, tell us about the time you got six hits in a game," Charlie Blackmon's grandkids will ask over and over in 50 years.

Tony: Only offense worse than the Cubs right now.
24 Diamondbacks Phillies

JJ: Not a great start (2-7), but hey, Mark Trumbo does have five home runs already.

Tony: Beyond Cliff Lee, that rotation scares me until Hamels returns.
25 White Sox Rockies

JJ: Playing a more fun brand of baseball, but bullpen control issues are a downer.

Tony: We know they're going to score, but pitching is a struggle.
26 Phillies Cubs

JJ: Cliff Lee's first start: 5 IP, 8 ER, 1 K. Second start: 7 IP, 0 ER, 6 K.

Tony: Can they build off Sunday's offensive explosion?
27 Mets Twins

JJ: Welp

Tony: Probably the worst pitching staff in majors right now.
28 Cubs Marlins

JJ: Go check out Tony's story on Ryan Kalish.

Tony: Casey McGehee has 10 RBI! These ex-Cubs are killin' it.
29 Twins Astros

JJ: Looked like a team in full rebuilding mode in opening series against the White Sox.

Tony: At least they looked awesome in the first two games...
30 Astros Diamondbacks

JJ: Dexter Fowler's been awesome to start the season, so this sucks.

Tony: OK, here's my one overreaction. They do have a 6.15 ERA, after all.