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MLB Power Rankings: Astros take top spot, Red Sox back in top 10

Tim Warner / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Welcome to the fifth edition of theScore's MLB Power Rankings for the 2019 season. Rankings will be published every second Monday throughout the regular season with the next installment coming May 27.

1. Houston Astros

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
26-15 8-2 +69 3 (+2)

Following Sunday's bludgeoning of in-state rivals the Rangers, the Astros launched themselves back into top spot on our power rankings thanks to eight wins in their last nine games. It isn't all good news in Houston, however, with clubhouse leader and 2017 AL MVP Jose Altuve landing on the injured list with a hamstring injury.

2. Los Angeles Dodgers

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
27-16 7-3 +53 2 (-)

Hyun-Jin Ryu's no-hit bid might have been spoiled by the Nationals' Gerardo Parra on Sunday, but the Dodgers shouldn't be bothered. Los Angeles is beginning to widen the gap (four-game lead) in the NL West and seems almost unbeatable at home - improving to 17-6 on the season. Justin Turner is also starting to wake up (five homers, 11 RBIs in May) and Clayton Kershaw is back to doing his thing. It's still early, but another division title looks like a reasonable conclusion.

3. Chicago Cubs

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
24-14 8-2 +54 6 (+3)

The Cubs are firing on all cylinders, getting strong pitching, clutch offense, and some late-game heroics that include three walk-off wins over the last week. Chicago has four players (Kris Bryant, Willson Contreras, Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez) who boast an OPS north of 1.000 this month, while starters Jon Lester and Kyle Hendricks have yet to allow an earned run across 30 innings in May.

4. Tampa Bay Rays

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
24-15 5-5 +57 1 (-3)

The Rays boast incredible pitching depth, but it was still a significant blow to lose AL ERA leader Tyler Glasnow for the next four-to-six weeks with a forearm strain. The right-hander leads the team in innings pitched, WHIP, ERA, and opponents' batting average, and is second in strikeouts among starters.

Hannah Foslien / Getty Images Sport / Getty

5. Minnesota Twins

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
25-14 6-4 +51 9 (+4)

The Minnesota Twins own the best record in baseball; it's a sentence few thought would be uttered in 2019, and yet here we are. There's still a long way to go, but Minnesota's playing inspired ball right now. The club sits second in the majors in team OPS and fourth in the AL in ERA, and there's no reason to think that won't continue.

6. New York Yankees

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
24-16 7-3 +36 4 (-2)

The DJ LeMahieu signing might go down as one of the most important of Brian Cashman's tenure. The two-time All-Star is hitting .333/.384/.452 with 10 doubles and 21 RBIs in 36 games while providing cover at first, second, and third base for the injury-riddled Yankees. They've also been powered, to the surprise of many, by Gio Urshela. The slick infielder owns a .902 OPS in 31 contests and has already surpassed his career high in doubles. For a franchise with seemingly unlimited funds, it's impressive how the Yankees continue to find unheralded players who seem to play their best when landing in pinstripes.

7. Philadelphia Phillies

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
23-16 7-3 +39 8 (+1)

Aaron Nola's slow start to 2019 has been offset by the breakout performance of Zach Eflin, who is steadying the Phillies' rotation. Although his strikeout numbers are down slightly from last year, the right-hander ranks in the top 10 among NL starters in ERA and WAR, and he's the only pitcher with two complete games.

8. Milwaukee Brewers

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
24-18 7-3 +5 12 (+4)

After finishing the first month of the season with the worst ERA in the NL, the Brewers' starters have begun to right the ship. The rotation has lowered its ERA almost two full runs in May, with Zach Davies, Gio Gonzalez, and Brandon Woodruff combining for a 1.50 ERA and 36 strikeouts over their last six starts.

9. St. Louis Cardinals

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
22-19 2-8 +20 5 (-4)

St. Louis has fallen back to earth a little bit over the last two weeks, getting swept by the Cubs and dropping series to the Phillies and Pirates. It would help if Marcell Ozuna could find his groove again; the outfielder has followed up a red-hot April by slumping to a .563 OPS this month.

Patrick Smith / Getty Images Sport / Getty

10. Boston Red Sox

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
22-19 8-2 +27 18 (+8)

The Red Sox have put a miserable start behind them, as the offense is finally starting to click at an elite level. Since owning a minus-42 run differential on April 17, the club has outscored the opposition 132-72 and ranks first in the AL in runs, and second in both home runs and OPS this month. The club's resurgence is due in part to Rafael Devers, who is slashing .426/.462/.638 with two homers, 13 RBIs, and only four strikeouts in 47 at-bats in May and has appeared in all 41 of Boston's games.

11. Arizona Diamondbacks

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
22-19 4-6 +13 10 (-1)

While the "Freight Train," David Peralta, continues to steamroll opposing pitching (.931 OPS in May), infielders Ketel Marte and Wilmer Flores are surprisingly giving Arizona some much-needed punch with Eduardo Escobar and Christian Walker slumping. Marte and Flores have already combined for 26 hits this month and are getting on base at nearly a .400 clip. Not bad for a couple of guys who were bench players on their former clubs.

12. San Diego Padres

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
22-19 5-5 -11 13 (-1)

The Padres have done an admirable job staying afloat with Fernando Tatis Jr. out of the lineup, posting a 6-6 record, but they'll need more out of fill-in Ty France (12 strikeouts in 11 games). Chris Paddack continues to impress and his feud with Pete Alonso is great for the league. The NL Rookie of the Year race is shaping up to be one of the best in recent memory.

13. Cleveland Indians

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
21-18 5-5 -9 11 (-2)

Things are slipping away from the Indians quickly. Corey Kluber is out long term, Jose Ramirez looks nothing like the MVP-caliber player of recent years, and their outfield sports a collective wRC+ of 75, the second-worst in the AL. Cleveland's reign atop the Central appears to be in serious jeopardy.

14. Atlanta Braves

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
21-20 6-4 +1 15 (-1)

Despite a 10-game stretch on the road, the 2018 NL East champs have kept pace with the Phillies atop the division. Mike Soroka, 21, has been hot, allowing just four earned runs in five starts. Luke Jackson has also been a revelation at the back end of Atlanta's bullpen after stepping in with closer A.J. Minter demoted to the minors. Atlanta may want to take a look at free agent Craig Kimbrel soon, though, if the club intends to compete.

15. Colorado Rockies

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
19-21 6-4 -5 16 (+1)

As Nolan Arenado goes, so do the Rockies. Colorado's third baseman is on fire in May, hitting .452/.489/.857, which has helped his club to a winning record this month. Arenado isn't doing all of the damage by himself, though. Charlie Blackmon is slugging over .800 in May and the three-time All-Star added two more big blasts Sunday.

Alex Trautwig / Major League Baseball / Getty

16. Seattle Mariners

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
20-23 2-8 -14 7 (-9)

The Mariners are in complete free fall. After starting the campaign 13-2, Seattle has gone 7-21 and is under .500 for the first time since 2017. If the slide continues, expect the front office to be busy, and it will be interesting to see how it handles Felix Hernandez in his final year under contract. King Felix, who notched his 2,500th career strikeout and hit the IL within 24 hours over the weekend, has allowed 14 runs over his last two starts and owns a 6.52 ERA this season.

17. Los Angeles Angels

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
19-21 6-4 -1 23 (+6)

The Angels appear to have finally surrounded Mike Trout with a strong supporting cast. Tommy La Stella, Kevan Smith, and Kole Calhoun have all helped pace the offense this month, as Trout sits third on the team in OPS in May. La Stella's start to the season has been as incredible as it's been unexpected. The utility man has nine home runs in 35 games after hitting 10 through his first 396.

18. New York Mets

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
19-20 4-6 -15 17 (-1)

Mickey Callaway's seat seems to be getting warmer. After the Mets' 1-5 road trip this past week, the team's front office held a closed-door meeting that prompted speculation about Callaway's future in Queens. If the players don't want a managerial change, they'll have to do more than just stomp on the lowly Marlins.

19. Pittsburgh Pirates

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
20-17 7-3 -35 22 (+3)

Bless you, Josh Bell. Not only is the Pirates first baseman one of the game's hottest-hitting players (.400/.455/.825 in May), but he also showed his mom some love Sunday that really tugged at the heartstrings. With his mother Myrtle in attendance, Bell posted a career-high five RBIs, including a clutch homer in the seventh. Bell leads Pittsburgh in homers, RBIs, slugging, and OPS.

Joe Robbins / Getty Images Sport / Getty

20. Cincinnati Reds

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
18-23 5-5 +30 20 (-)

The Reds should be sending gift baskets to the Marlins as a thank-you for castoffs Luis Castillo and Derek Dietrich. Castillo, acquired from Miami in a 2017 trade, has finally emerged as the Reds' bona fide ace and was April's NL Pitcher of the Month; Dietrich, who was cut by Miami in the winter and joined the Reds on a minor-league deal, owns a team-leading and career-best .999 OPS. It's hard to imagine where Cincinnati would be without the pair.

21. Oakland Athletics

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
19-23 5-5 -7 21 (-)

It was a memorable week for Oakland as Mike Fiers became just the 35th pitcher in major-league history to throw two no-hitters. Fiers used 131 pitches to blank the Reds on May 7, fulfilling a promise he made to pick up his struggling team. Since Fiers' no-no, Oakland owns a winning record and is about to start a two-game set with a slumping Mariners club, although its next nine games are on the road.

22. Washington Nationals

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
16-24 3-7 -25 14 (-8)

About the only thing going right for the Nationals right now is that the Marlins will prevent them from falling into last place. Between injuries, poor pitching, and a disastrous road trip that included plane troubles, this is shaping up to be a season to forget. They've already fired one coach, and one must wonder how much more rope manager Dave Martinez will get if this continues.

23. Texas Rangers

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
17-21 3-7 -3 24 (+1)

Coming home appears to have revitalized 36-year-old Hunter Pence. A native of Fort Worth, Texas, Pence joined the Rangers on a minor-league deal after several injury-plagued seasons and has forced his way into an everyday role. He's posted a team-best 1.464 OPS in 90 plate appearances and hit four of his seven homers this month.

24. Chicago White Sox

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
18-21 4-6 -25 27 (+3)

Tim Anderson didn't bring his bat-flip game to Toronto over the weekend, perhaps to avoid another beef with Blue Jays outfielder Randal Grichuk, who indirectly criticized the shortstop on Twitter for his antics last month. Anderson hit two homers in the three-game set en route to a first series win since the club took two of three from Baltimore to begin May.

Tom Szczerbowski / Getty Images Sport / Getty

25. Toronto Blue Jays

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
16-24 2-8 -34 19 (-6)

Vlad Guerrero Jr. has struggled early on in his major-league career and the rotation has come crashing back to earth, resulting in a fall down the rankings for Toronto. Baseball's top prospect is hitting just .191/.283/.234 with no home runs and 11 strikeouts through 13 games. Meanwhile, Blue Jays starters own an AL-worst 8.31 ERA through 11 starts in May after posting the second-best ERA (3.16) in the American League over the first month.

26. Detroit Tigers

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
18-20 5-5 -49 25 (-1)

Miguel Cabrera might have a point. After the Detroit slugger scolded the team last week for offering little protection behind him in the lineup, the club was blanked on May 9 and 10. The Tigers were able to split a four-game set with the Twins over the weekend, but a minus-49 run differential in the first two months isn't a good sign for the rebuilding franchise.

27. San Francisco Giants

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
17-23 5-5 -36 26 (-1)

Pablo Sandoval threw a scoreless inning during a blowout loss Monday. Five days later, the Giants celebrated Panda's pitching skills with a "Let Panda Pitch" bobblehead. Maybe he can play the outfield or work as the team physician. It's been that kind of season in San Francisco.

28. Kansas City Royals

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
14-27 3-7 -20 28 (-)

Alex Gordon is alive in Kansas City. The veteran outfielder is having a career year thus far, posting a .923 OPS, which includes a .542 slugging percentage, and sits second on the team with 31 RBIs. Hunter Dozier is also impressing for the Royals, but one of the worst pitching staffs in the majors by ERA (5.01) and opponents' average (.262) has been a hindrance.

29. Baltimore Orioles

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
14-26 4-6 -75 30 (+1)

It's not all doom and gloom in Baltimore. Fielding a non-competitive team allows the front office to evaluate a number of young players at the major-league level, and it has to be impressed with the performance of John Means. The left-hander owns a 2.33 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, and 33 strikeouts in 38 2/3 innings. He allowed just two runs in 12 innings against the Red Sox.

30. Miami Marlins

Record Last 10 RD Previous rank (change)
10-29 2-8 -91 29 (-1)

The Marlins' minus-91 run differential has them on pace to become the first team in baseball's modern era (since 1901) to be outscored by 350 or more over the course of a season. If nothing else, this team is making Orioles fans feel better about last year.

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