Each week during the baseball season Athlon Sports looks at the best (Oakland A's) and worst (Houston Astros) baseball teams and players in the league. Here are our MLB Power Rankings and Players of the Week.
Athlon Sports MLB Power Ranking
1. A’s20 games better than Texas since last June 30.
2. CardinalsBats silenced in Atlanta, now critical five games at Pirates.
3. Red SoxShould be a fun race to watch in the AL East down the stretch...
4. Rays...as Red Sox, Rays begin to separate themselves from pack.
5. PiratesBiggest series in Pittsburgh since early 1990s.
6. BravesShut down league’s best offense in sweep over Redbirds.
7. DodgersAdd a walk-off home run to Yasiel Puig’s list of heroics.
8. OriolesNext 11 games vs. teams with losing records.
9. TigersVictor Martinez heating up in support of Cabrera and Fielder.
10. IndiansAllowed opponents a .183 average last week to gain ground.
11. RedsScored just seven runs in four games at Dodger Stadium.
12. RangersTexas ship is taking on water fast.
13. YankeesJeter and Soriano return with huge splash.
14. DiamondbacksMay not see first place again this season.
15. MarinersTough week looms at Boston and Baltimore.
16. NationalsBatting just .211 vs. lefties.
17. RockiesHaven’t won three in a row since May 24.
18. RoyalsBack at .500, five games out of playoff position.
19. Blue Jays10-game West Coast trip coming up.
20. PhilliesBatted just .189 with no homers during tough week.
21. PadresTyson Ross gives rotation a lift.
22. CubsSwept Giants at San Fran.
23. AngelsAlbert Pujols’ injury is a huge blow.
24. MetsMatt Harvey, Zack Wheeler: 12-3, 2.45 ERA; others: 17-32, 4.47.
25. Twins9-15 and batting just .225 in July.
26. GiantsLack of punch drops Giants to last place in NL West.
27. BrewersCarlos Gomez trying to pick up slack for suspended Braun.
28. MarlinsBoasting a winning record since May 30.
29. White SoxTime to unload trade chips.
30. AstrosNow on pace to lose 107.
AL Player of the Week
Edwin Encarnacion, Toronto
The Blue Jays continue to struggle to find consistency, but Encarnacion did his part last week. He clubbed a pair of homers — one a grand slam — in one inning vs. Houston and totaled 13 hits to bat .520 for the week.
AL Pitcher of the Week
Max Scherzer, Detroit
The big righthander tossed two gems last week logging 14 innings and allowing just five hits and no walks for a 0.36 WHIP. He struck out 12 batters and is now 15-1 on the season with a 3.01 ERA.
NL Player of the Week
Giancarlo Stanton, Miami
The Marlins’ right fielder hit safely in six of seven games last week including four multi-hit games and eight extra-base hits. He hit three homers — all solo shots — and drove in six while scoring seven.
NL Pitcher of the Week
Jose Fernandez, Miami
The youngster defeated Colorado on the road and Pittsburgh at home last week, holding each team to just two runs. He struck out 21 batters over 15 innings and gave up 10 hits and two walks. For the week, he whiffed 13 and didn’t issue a single free pass.