1. Chicago Cubs (78-45, previously No. 1) – The Cubs continue to roll as they now lead the NL Central by 12 games and have an unbelievable plus-208 run differential. As a comparison, the next best mark in the league is plus-145. Kris Bryant’s 31 homers are the second-best in the NL.
2. Washington Nationals (73-50, previously No. 2) – Washington seems to be on cruise control in the NL East as they seem to have all but clinched the division. Daniel Murphy (.345) and Wilson Ramos (.322) continue to have great seasons as they have the best and third-best averages in the NL.
3. Texas Rangers (73-52, previously No. 3) – Even though they’ve lost two in a row, the Rangers lead the AL West by six games even with a plus-1 run differential. They made the biggest moves at the trade deadline and it appears to be paying off. Cole Hamels’ 2.80 ERA is the third-best mark in the AL.
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4. Cleveland Indians (71-51, previously No. 4) – Cleveland is among the hottest teams in the American League as they have now won seven of their last 10 games to go along with an impressive plus-105 run differential. Francisco Lindor is having a nice season as his average is .314, tied for fourth in the AL.
5. Toronto Blue Jays (70-54, previously No. 5) – As it stands now, the Blue Jays are atop the American League East standings as they are getting solid performances both at the plate and on the mound. Edwin Encarnacion currently has 35 home runs and 101 RBIs, which are second and first in the AL respectively.
6. Boston Red Sox (69-54, previously No. 9) – This could have been a nightmare of a road trip but the Red Sox have performed quite well as before Sunday’s loss they had won eight of nine games. Mookie Betts is starting to make his case for AL MVP as his .314 average is tied for fourth in the American League.
7. San Francisco Giants (68-56, previously No. 7) – Things aren’t going so well for the Giants of late as they have dropped two straight and seven of their last 10. With how competitive the NL West is, every game counts and they cannot afford any more stretches like this.
8. Baltimore Orioles (67-56, previously No. 6) – Baltimore is another team struggling of late as they picked a bad time to lose six of their last 10 games as they are now 2.5 games out of first place. The biggest thing for them of late has been the lack of runs scored, which is what led them to this point in the year.
9. St. Louis Cardinals (66-57, previously No. 11) – Although the NL Central is out of reach with the Cubs running away with things, St. Louis would be in the postseason if it began today in the Wild Card game. They have a plus-81 run differential and a lot of experience on the roster, which should help down the stretch.
10. Seattle Mariners (66-57, previously No. 13) – The Mariners won’t go away as they have won six of their last 10 games and still potentially could make a run in the AL West and have a solid shot at the Wild Card as well. Hisashi Iwakuma is enjoying a good year on the mound as his 14 wins are fifth in the AL.
11. Los Angeles Dodgers (65-52, previously No. 8) – The NL West appears to be coming down to the last week of the season as neither the Giants or Dodgers have been able to separate themselves. The biggest thing might be whenever Clayton Kershaw returns as that will certainly give L.A. a boost.
12. Detroit Tigers (65-59, previously No. 10) – Detroit had a big chance to gain ground in the Wild Card with the Red Sox into town for four games, but only managed a split. They remain in the thick of things with just over a month left to play. Michael Fulmer’s 2.58 ERA is the best mark in the AL.
13. Miami Marlins (65-59, previously No. 12) – Miami has won three straight games and they will need to keep this up if they have any shot at the postseason as the NL East will be tough and there are a number of teams right there with them for the Wild Card. Martin Prado’s .320 average is fifth in the National League.
14. Kansas City Royals (64-60, previously No. 18) – Don’t look now, but here come the Royals as they have won eight straight and nine of their last 10 to get right back into playoff contention. The AL Central might be out of reach, but they are right in the thick of the Wild Card race. Danny Duffy’s 2.66 ERA is second-best in the AL.
15. Houston Astros (64-60, previously No. 14) – After a tough few weeks, the Astros are starting to get things back on track as they have won three straight games. They aren’t quite out of the AL Wild Card mix, but do need to continue their strong play. Jose Altuve leads the American League as he’s hitting .265.
16. New York Yankees (63-60, previously No. 15) – Although the Yankees have played solid since the trade deadline, it just looks like there are too many teams in front of them for the AL Wild Card to have a real shot at things. New York did set themselves up well for the future with all the moves they made at the deadline.
17. Pittsburgh Pirates (62-59, previously No. 16) – Things could be going better in Pittsburgh as they have lost three straight games and are on the outside of the playoff picture looking in. With so many teams in front of them, it will be tough for the Pirates to be playing October baseball.
18. New York Mets (62-62, previously No. 17) – New York is starting to turn things around as they have won two straight games, but the only problem is their poor play allowed a lot of teams jump ahead of them in the NL Wild Card standings. Jay Bruce’s 27 home runs are fifth in the NL and he’s given the team a lift since coming over at the trade deadline.
19. Colorado Rockies (60-64, previously No. 20) – It’s the same old story for the Rockies as they can score runs with any team in the league, but just cannot get the pitching they need to contend. Their 660 runs scored are the second-most in the National League.
20. Chicago White Sox (59-64, previously No. 19) – The White Sox are pretty much eliminated from postseason contention in what really has been an up-and-down season going all the way back to the Adam LaRoche story in spring training. On paper, they have one of the best rotations in baseball.
21. Philadelphia Phillies (58-67, previously No. 21) – Going into the season not much was expected from the Phillies, but having a record of just 11 games below .500 may be better than many anticipated. One of the biggest bright spots has been Jeanmar Gomez and his 33 saves, fourth in the NL.
22. Milwaukee Brewers (53-70, previously No. 22)
23. Cincinnati Reds (53-70, previously No. 26)
24. Oakland Athletics (53-71, previously No. 23)
25. San Diego Padres (53-71, previously No. 24)
26. Tampa Bay Rays (52-70, previously No. 28)
27. Los Angeles Angels (52-72, previously No. 25)
28. Arizona Diamondbacks (51-73, previously No. 27)
29. Minnesota Twins (49-75, previously No. 29)
30. Atlanta Braves (45-79, previously No. 30)