Okay, so here is the first set of AL POWER RANKINGS
I’m only going to do Lineups and Rotations, because teams are still putting everything together and such, while most teams have the majority of these two facets figured out.
Also, I’m going by what is in everyone’s clubhouse.
Lineup: I would not want to have my team face your lineup in 2 or 3 years from now. But, for now, it is nothing to be too terribly afraid of. A lot of your guys can be great, no doubt, just unproven, which is to be expected from a rebuilding team. Would have looked better if you had Grandal ☺ . I love Trout and we have yet to see what Cespedes can do. Plus, you have Harper waiting in the wings.
Rotation: Buchholz is a great young arm a top of the rotation, but I hate AJ Burnett. Although, he will hopefully bounce back a little this year, maybe being out of NY will help him. Richards has shown flashes in his brief time up while Lincoln and Peacock are unproven, yet highly regarded specs. Could turn out to be very good in the end.
Overall: Vladdy, what can I say? You took a very good team that was handed to you, dismantled it, and turned it into easily a top 2 farm system in this game. IMO, your only competition for the best future is going to be the Jays. You managed to haul the maximum possible value for a lot of your players, and I thought you did a good job of rebuilding into a contender and a pool of talent that can be dealt from. This team is built for the future and should contend for a while.
Lineup: I like the way your lineup looks, except for Darwin Barney hitting 6, I just don’t think he fits there. With that being said, another year under the belts of Ackley, Smoak, and Alonso should bring forth greater results, and hopefully Wallace progresses a bit more. Ichiro regressed a bit, but he’s Ichiro and you know what you’re going to get out of him in the leadoff slot. Heisey is a wildcard, could be very good though and is underrated IMO. Should fare pretty well with this lineup, not fantastic, but not terrible.
Rotation: Although you traded King Felix away, the signing of Yu Darvish will help you get over that along with another year of progress from Michael Pineda. The big questions are Hultzen and Chapman. If they are able to contribute in the rotation right away, there is potential for this to be an above average, very solid rotation. Chapman could be scary though, either scary good or scary bad. He needs to get his control down. I like Leake as a 5, too. Solid numbers, and always has a chance to make another step forward.
Overall- Futuro, you’ve done a pretty good job. Even after trading Felix, this is still a pretty good team RIGHT NOW. The lineup might struggle a bit due to inexperience, but in time it should be above average. Your rotation is much of the same. You were aggressive and got Darvish, and that will bode well for you when the voting rolls around.
Lineup: Very strong, but I’m not sure I understand some of the deals you guys made. The lineup was potent as is, and trading Andrus created a big hole with the marquee FA SS gone, and with most of your big named specs going for Price/Quentin. That being said, this lineup will still mash. I love Kinsler and Holliday, and Beltre has shown he’s not a flash in the pan. Even with the hole at SS, you still have the best offense in the division. Napoli is no scrub either.
Rotation: After losing CJ Wilson, you were kind of up against it for an ace, thus leading to the Price deal. While you get your established ace, it was a hefty price to pay. Price is legit, though. However, I am not really sold on Gio yet. If he can get his walk rate down a bit, he may be alright, but Arlington is not an easy place to pitch. Hopefully Ogando can keep it going next year, and Holland should be solid again. Colby Lewis has declined a bit, but a very serviceable 5 to say the least.
Overall: I can’t lie, some of your moves left me scratching my head, but it doesn’t really matter. With some teams rebuilding, you are easily the class of the division. Price and Gio are a strong Ĺ punch and your lineup will provide the run support they will need at Arlington. Find a bargain SS and you’ll be good to go.
Lineup: You added some nice, young pieces but you’re lineup is going to struggle. With no real power threat present, who is going to drive people in in the middle of your order? But, you are rebuilding, so there are some good pieces here. Weeks and Domonic Brown should be exciting to watch, but other than that, not much. Oakland is a hellish place to hit as is anyway.
Rotation: The mock started and you were stacked with some premium cost controlled pitching. And you did a good job of dealing that for high end specs from the Reds and Cardinals. And the rotation is still manageable. Garcia was a good get in the Cards deal, a good piece to headline the rotation. Shelby Miller, more of the same, but I’m not sure if he’ll be a #2 right away. Anderson and Braden are returning from injury, but have shown they have what it takes to pitch in the show.
Overall: I’m sure being the A’s was not very easy, the lineup was a mess before you got there anyway. I like what you did with the pieces you had in the rotation and the value you got for them thus far. BUT, the lineup needs a TON of work. Rebuilding comes in all phases, unless you plan to flip all that pitching for some serious offensive pieces. Not bad, but still a long way to go.
Lineup: We all know Howard is overrated, but you had to do something, and I actually liked the move. You got someone who is going to at least make the game somewhat interesting for your fans, because what you were given to work with in the beginning should not even have been a MLB lineup. Hopefully your young guys weren’t rushed into service and can mature and become something. I have always liked Schaefer, and think he has a ton of raw talent. Martinez could be interesting to watch as well.
Rotation: Again, you were dealt a 7/2 off suit here. Weiland is alright, Norris much of the same. Myers all depends on which Brett shows up. Happ had so much promise, maybe he lives up to it? You also play at Minute Maid. Yikes.
Overall: I really do give you all the credit in the world, astrosmaniac. This was not an easy job to undertake, and you managed to drag Ryan Howard into Texas. Hopefully under your reign, you begin to draft better and start the rebuild the right way.
Lineup: Almost a complete overhaul of the roster, yet it still works. Itís not an overwhelming lineup, but sufficient. Freeman should make strides again this year and I have always supported Upton and Rasmus. I think Konerko is a good constant in the middle of your order, consistent. Kelly Johnson is also pretty overlooked and could continue to turn heads, overall, not a bad lineup. Although, with the deals made to send some SP away for big time prospects, it could be selling/retooling time in Tdot.
Rotation: After the Price and Morrow deals, it is clear that there is a rebuild/retool coming along. Price and Morrow out, but in comes Matt Harrison, who seems to have snuck under the radar somehow. McCarthy may have been a product of the Coliseum, but that remains to be seen. Henderson Alvarez could be nice too, but I need to see a little more. Romero is still at home for now, and Minor is a really nice young arm. The rotation is being shaved down, but in a concise fashion, maximizing value for the players being dealt.
Overall: It was a bit rough in the start, having to compete with the juggernaut of a division you are in, but you built a team that could have competed, but similar to the Angels, have decided to tear it down and get young. Having negotiated with you and seen some of the deals made early in your GM career, I have no doubt that you will compete for best future.
Lineup: Got rid of Crawford, although he was a strong bounce back candidate. I do like the platoon youíve got going on in right though. I love A-Gon, Ells, and Pedroia. Smith and Francoeur will mash when they donít have to face their kryptonite. Being able to comfortably bat Beltran 6 is nuts. Scutaro is a great fit for the 9 hole. Lavarnway is the only question mark in your lineup. Even though itís Boston, hitting 7 should ease some pressure off and he should be able to excel. Oh, and you have Longo now, too.
Rotation: One of the best in the game. Three possible aces in Lester, Haren, and Beckett followed by 2 incredibly underrated pitchers in Fister and Maholm. Youíre lucky you got to Fister as fast as you did, because Iím sure he was a hot commodity. Thereís really not much more to say but, damn.
Overall: I have given ya lots of praise thus far, which was deserved but you are the Red Sox, which is the same thing Iím going to say for the Yankees. However, the farm is still somewhat intact and there is still a bright future here. One of the best teams from top to bottom in the mock, but again, in a juggernaut of a division.
Lineup: You are the Yankees, you have oodles and oodles of moneyÖwhy is Justin Maxwell your starting LFer? Other than that, Jeter will continue to decline, as well as A-Rod, but that does not mean by any means that they will not produce. Tex will be Tex and hopefully the Grandyman continues on his tear. Cano will most likely continue to mash. Not a lot of change here, but you didnít really need it, so kudos for not tearing up a good thing.
Rotation: Before I get into your rotation, you gave up A LOT to get these pitchers. Banuelos, Betances, and Montero are all studs in the making. You did get James Shields though, which also does you a favor by taking him away from the Rays. CC will keep dominating and you get a more then serviceable 3 in Santana. Lilly will be consistent and eat innings. Hopefully Nova can take another step and show heís not just a back end starter.
Overall: You gave up a lot in your deals, but youíre the Yankees. The main goal is the product on the field. I still think you trail the Red Sox, though. Your lineup will continue to score and getting rid of AJ was a good move. The rotation has made strides from where it was to begin with. Should be an interesting finish to the mock in this division.
Lineup: I love the pieces in your lineup, but I do not understand the arrangement. No way Santana should be hitting 9 and I would probably switch Gordon and Zobrist (heís a S hitter btw). Also, I would have Prince in front of Lawrie. Someone doesnít get 400 mil to hit 5. Escobar was a GREAT addition to your team in an area of need, and Bautista drops bombs. I also like that you have kept Jennings. Your lineup should rake and score plenty of runs no matter what, though.
Rotation: 4 LHP is very unconventional, but who knows? Santana is good, but he has to show heís ready to come all the way back and dominate again. I love Moore and he should be just fine. Collmenter is a very underrated acquisition, one that I like a lot. Same goes for Niese and Dickey. I like the ensemble here, but there is not a lot of name power, which, sadly is a facet of these games. Collmenter is great, but not everyone is going to look up his FIP or WAR.
Overall: You guys built a competitorÖbut you destroyed the Friedman mold. Your team will win for years to come, but I still am not sure that you have enough to compete with the big boys. Your lineup may very well go toe to toe with theirs, but your rotation has to hold up as well. Good job of building a winner though, itís tough in this division.
Lineup: Wieters is good, Jones is nice, Markakis is sweet, but youíre in trouble.
Rotation: Youíre in trouble.
Overall: You are in a lot of trouble. You honestly should have just sold from the beginning. No one honestly expects the Oís to compete here, and you have some nice pieces that could fetch quite the haul and let you move in the right direction, but you really havenít done anything.
Guys, this was a really tough division to do, so donít take anything personally. Honestly, there could be 3 playoff teams from this division.
Lineup: You did some work and brought in some nice pieces in Joyce and Parra, I really thought the Parra trade was good for you. Butler is solid and Moustakas is only going to get better. Hosmer is going to be a beast too. There really is a lot of potential in the lineup here, especially if Cain can live up to they hype and Escobar continues to move forward. Perez and Giovatella are wildcards, and if they hit, you could have something nice here.
Rotation: I understand youíre rebuilding, so I can support the Wade Davis at the front of the rotation. I do think with dealing Alex Gordon you should have looked for someone a little better than Davis though. I was actually eyeing Livan for my team too, so thatís a solid vet presence there. Duffy could turn out to be solid, I donít know much about Wilson, but I know Montgomery has a ton of potential, and things could start looking up soon.
Overall: Not too bad, nothing overwhelming, but certainly nothing awful either. Thereís a lot of potential on this roster, and the Royals system is absolutely loaded. It might have been good to have piled up some of that depth and got some high end specs/MLB ready players to help your cause. I love Bubba Starling, too. Honestly, youíre going about rebuilding the correct way, so kudos to you for that.
Lineup: A lot of potential here. Probably nothing that will contend this year, but tons of potential for the future. DíArnaud was an awesome get, and it is to be seen if Iglesias will be able to stick it at the MLB level. Snider is due to break out sooner or later, hopefully too much talent not to. Beckham is bound to bounce back. And I liked what I saw from De Aza. Weíll see about Viciedo, looks promising though. Dunn and Rios are albatrosses, and I know you have probably tried to move them to no avail. Looks like a pretty good rebuild to me, you cleaned house.
Rotation: I think this is very interesting, and has the potential to be surprisingly good. Peavy, when healthy, has filthy stuff. Sale has all the tools to be a frontline SP, LH to boot. Drabek has been disappointing thus far, but it is way too early to write him off. Humber seemed to step it up a bit this past year and Zach Stewart pitched well in his time with the team last year, I would expect more of the same to continue.
Overall: I think you guys did well with the assets you had. You beefed up the MLB roster and added some much needed depth in the minors. I think in a year, this team could be awfully competitive, depending on the progression of these top specs that were acquired. I really do think Sale will be a premier pitcher one day, and DíArnaud is very highly touted. Some good moves all around.
Lineup: With this Romero deal, there are quite a few holes you have to address now. Lind is coming back, but heís not very good. Gardner, Montero, Choo, and Cabrera will all be solid for your team, I just worry about how you will fill out the rest of this roster and Iím kind of confused as to why youíre trying to move all your young valuable assets, just creating more holes. Anywho, the lineup will produce, because of your core, but their may be some holes that can be exploited.
Rotation: Romero was a nice get, steep price, but a nice get. Hopefully for you Jimenez decides to act like he knows how to pitch again. If he returns to COL Jimenez, this could be a very nice Ĺ punch. I like Huff a bit, too, and I think heíd do well in your rotation here. Masterson is nice, and I like Tomlin too, but Iím not sold on Gomez. I would probably go Huff first before Gomez.
Overall: Iím not really sure what direction youíre trying to head in. I doní t think as of right now you can compete, and after having dealt Kipnis and Chisenhall, rebuilding canít be the way. That being said, thereís some solid pieces here, and with a couple more moves that complement your current roster, the division could be yours, itís not very strong.
Lineup: I donít like Crawford hitting 3, or Peralta at 2, but for what you have right now, I guess itís the best you can do. You added Crawford, but then nothing else. But, you did win the division last year and there arenít any teams in your division making big strides, so I guess that many moves arenít warranted. But, if you donít make some more progress, you wonít see it out of the first round of the playoffs.
Rotation: You have Verlander, which is always awesome. But outside of that, Iím not too impressed. Floyd is nice, but you gave up a lot to get him. Porcello is meh, he has never really lived up to potential. Scherzer, I think can be great, but he has to take that next step. Losing Fister hurts A LOT, this rotation definitely went down a notch, youíre also missing a fifth starter. Turner maybe?
Overall: I really am not impressed, you really benefit from being in a division that was best suited to rebuild, but the Indians arenít that far away. You had nice P prospects that were packaged for Floyd, but I think you could have done better. As I mentioned earlier, if you donít do some more tweaking, youíll have trouble advancing past the divisional round.
Lineup: I like Revere and Morneau, but thatís about it, but youíre rebuilding clearly, so itís about fielding a team and allowing young players to play. I like that you have been shopping Morneau vigorously, but who covers for him then? McGehee could have been a steal if he shows he can bounce back from a horrendous year. Maybe a young piece or two more and this would come out a lot better. But, hey, you gotta let the kids play. FA really hammered you, losing Cuddyer and Kubel, then smartly deciding to deal Mauer.
Rotation: I really like Jordan Zimmerman, and the fact that you used Greinke to pry him and some specs. Blackburn has been consistent, but not as a #3. Pavano may be a little past his prime now, and Swarzak has some promise, as well as Duensing. You also have some interesting prospects from 8-15 that could step up and surprise.
Overall: You guys were handed a tough assignment with a team that was ransacked by FA and aging/declining. I think it was a good idea to trade Mauer and begin to rebuild, but why would you give Papelbon 15 million then? You could have taken that money and went to Soler or Cespedes, or someone who would have benefited your situation more. But, you have acquired some top specs, and Iím sure youíre not done dealing.
Won't rank your team since your clubhouse is not up to date and I won't go search for what moves you have made. Once you update it, hit me up and I'll gladly edit it down with a breakdown of your team.
Atlanta Braves Lineup: I really like the Youkilis acquisition, moving him over to 1B should keep him healthy and when healthy, he is an OBP machine. Love both Bourn and McCann, plus both Heyward and Prado should be much better in 2012. Rotation: What is there to say except depth, depth and more depth? I'm a big fan of the Hanson, Hudson, Beachy trio. Jurrjens is nice to have, Lowe will eat innings and get GB's plus you still have Teheran, Viscaino and Delgado in the minors. Solid! Bullpen: Having Kimbrel, Venters and O'Flaherty in the back of your bullpen should be against the rules, just filthy. I am also a fan of Martinez, kid is pretty damn solid. This is definitely a strength of the team. Overall: You and Ruckus haven't been active in the mock, yet this team is really solid. Pitching is a strength and the offense will score runs. Definitely playoff bound!
Washington Nationals Lineup: You guys have hit FA hard. Bringing back Willingham should add some more power to that lineup. I love Zimmerman, and I'm a big fan of Espinosa and Ramos. Werth should be better and if the Furcal/Sizemore duo can stay healthy, should add some nice speed at the top of your lineup. Rotation: Did not like what you guys did to acquire your SP's, you decimated a farm in order to acquire Weaver and Greinke which is quite unrealistic. However, the rotation is extremely solid and I also like the Bedard signing. Definitely a top rotation in the mock. Bullpen: Don't like it at all, I like Clippard alot but the rest is meh. Overall: This is a playoff team, but not one I think will go far. Pitching is a strong suit, bullpen sucks and the lineup has alot of power and could be great, but Sizemore and Furcal are big question marks.
New York Mets Overall: You are obviously rebuilding and I've loved some of your moves so far. I'm a HUGE fan of the Soler signing. You got a big haul in the Wright trade, really liked it for you. You traded 3 SP's in the Rays trade (personally I would've traded them separately) but you got very solid prospects in return, so I can't blame you. I like that you got Skaggs in the Davis trade, but personally, I would've kept him. Keep stacking that farm, with your payroll, you should be able to compete for best future when you take into consideration that you've restocked the farm plus you'll be able to hit FA hard these next few years.
Miami Marlins Lineup: I am one of Stanton's biggest fans, plus Hanley should be better this year if he can stay healthy and not be a nutcase. I like Gaby plus Aramis was a nice addition, I can't understand your LoMo trade though? Jon Jay? You could've done much better. Rotation: Your banking on Johnson to stay healthy, a feat he has yet to accomplish. The rest of the rotation leaves alot to be desired. Bullpen: Acquiring Marmol and Storen was huge for your pen, Choate owns LHH and you've got potential for a pretty solid pen. Overall: This team isn't that good, could be much better. The pitching really brings it down for me. Don't think you'll make the playoffs.
Milwaukee Brewers Lineup: I must say, this team caught me by surprise. Losing Fielder will hurt, but you acquired Mauer, Rolen and others to offset that. When those two are healthy, they are solid at their position. Why is Kouzmanoff starting over Rolen though? Love all 3 of Braun, Morgan and Hart. Rodriguez should help you solidify that SS position defensively. Not a fan of Trumbo at all, but he should hit for power. Rotation: Losing Greinke will hurt you ALOT. Gallardo is a stud, Marcum is decent and so is Wolf but besides that not much too that I like here. Bullpen: Axford and Perkins are both solid, you still need to finish it off though, You lost both K-Rod and Hawkins who were big parts of the 2011 BP. Overall: Could be a WC team if the necessary moves are made.
St. Louis Cardinals Lineup: This lineup has the potential to be awesome. However, lots of question marks. Can Pujols continue to produce as he gets older? Can Hamilton, Cruz, Freese, Murphy all stay healthy and consistent? I didn't like that you traded Holliday away. However, I like both Andrus and Yadi ALOT. Rotation: Solid 1-4, no 5th starter yet. Carpenter and Wainwright are an elite 1-2, Danks is solid as can be and I'm not so down on Wandy as most people are. Bullpen: You added Romo, Santos, Melancon and Lopez to your bullpen. Those 4 alone will give you a solid bullpen, you add in the fact that you still have Motte and I really really like your bullpen ALOT. Overall: While your team is solid, you gutted your entire farm in order to do so and gave Pujols a ridiculous contract in the process. This team can compete NOW, but will look awful once players begin to age and nobody is available in the farm when injuries strike, which they will. Still solid though and you will compete.
Cincinnati Reds Lineup: You added Dejesus, Wright and Rollins to a lineup that already counted with Votto and Phillips, SOLID. Bringing back Hernandez was a great move as well, I really like this lineup has the potential to be elite if all things go right. Rotation: I mean, really? You brought in Hernandez and Cahill, plus also brought in Liriano (who is awesome in even #'d years, go check) plus you still have Cueto and Bailey in your rotation. This is damn good. Bullpen: Adding Madson was a solid addition, however, this bullpen will be your achilles heal unless you bring in some more quality arms. Could be awful if it stays the way it is, however, your rotation eating innings gives you the chance to add 1-2 more arms and you'll be set. Overall: This is definitely a contender, you will go toe to toe with the Cardinals for the division and ultimately you'll either win it or win the wild card (depends on the voters). Very solid team, I like what you've.
Pittsburgh Pirates Lineup: First of all, I'd like to say that I know it's tough to compete with such a limited payroll and the product you have on the field. However, I like some of your moves. Hanrahan trade netted you a 3B for the future and SS who if healthy for a complete season, could break out. I like Walker, Tabata, McCutchen plus getting Callaspo and Laroche via trade should help you out. Rotation: Not much to like here really, below-average. Bullpen: Basically you replaced Hanrahan with Soria, who should be much better in the NL. Overall: This team is decent, not a playoff team but will win some games.
Chicago Cubs Lineup: Not a big fan of your lineup. Cuddyer was a nice addition, Pena will hit for power and get on-base, plus Castro is solid. Outside of that, not much to like. Rotation: Overall, it's pretty good. However, I've never been a big fan of Edwin Jackson but he is a serviceable #3 starter. You still have Garza, Dempster will eat innings and I still think Zambrano could be a nice pitcher if he gets his rage under control. Bullpen: Soriano had a down year, maybe now that he's a closer again he'll be better. Getting out of the AL East should help him too. Wood and Marshall are both solid, plus the rest has potential. Overall: Not a playoff team but could be a contender in a few years.
REBUILD, REBUILD AND MORE REBUILDING.. not much to say besides that!