1. Detroit Tigers (11-2, previous No. 1) – Detroit is off to a tremendous start to the season and it’s been both pitching and defense getting the job done. The Tigers'plus-34 run differential is the best in baseball, tied with the Royals. Shortstop Jose Iglesias is leading the American League in average at .439, while Miguel Cabrera is fourth at .400.
2. New York Mets (10-3, previous No. 13) – Who would’ve ever thought the Mets would have this type of start? New York has won eight straight games and is 7-0 at home to jump out to the lead in the NL East. The Mets haveonly allowed 3.15 runs per game, as their pitching and defense have led them thus far.
3. Kansas City Royals (10-3, previous No. 2) – Like the division leading Tigers, the Royals have a major league leading plus-34 run differential to open the year. Lorenzo Cain is having a great start, hitting .413 (third in AL) and driving in 12 runs (tied for third in AL). They had some fireworks over the weekend in their series with the Athletics, which was very unusual for an April series.
4. Los Angeles Dodgers (9-3, previous No. 9) – Returning home was just what the Dodgers needed, as they have rattled off seven straight wins to move atop the NL West standings. Adrian Gonzalez is still raking to start the year, hitting .469 and belting five homers, both leading the NL.
5. San Diego Padres (9-5, previous No. 8) – The Padres are catching fire, winning eight of their last 10 games. Their offense has led the way. Over the first 14 games of the year San Diego has averaged 5.21 runs per game, and new closer Craig Kimbrel already has picked up four saves.
6. St. Louis Cardinals (8-3, previous No. 14) – St. Louis is another team off to a hot start, as it has won five straight games to take the lead in the NL Central. The Cards'pitching has been the story as they have allowed a ridiculous average of just 2.18 runs a game. They played a game Sunday night against the Reds in two hours and two minutes.
7. Atlanta Braves (8-4, previous No. 3) – The Braves are in second place in the NL East and that has come as a surprise to manyas it was expected that they would struggle. Their pitching staff has been dominant, allowing 3.66 runs per game, leading the way to their good start to the season.
8. Boston Red Sox (8-5, previous No. 5) – At one point this past week the Red Sox starting rotation had an ERA of 6.24, the worst in baseball. Their offense has carried them so far this season, and they will need their rotation to turn things around soon, as they won’t win at the rate they have, getting outings like they have.
9. Chicago Cubs (7-5, previous No. 15) – Prospect Kris Bryant was called up to the majors last week and has brought some excitement to the team. Now it’s being reported another prospect, shortstop Addison Russell is being called up. It’s these young studs who will be the key to turning the franchise around.
10. Colorado Rockies (7-6, previous No. 7) – Colorado has lost four straight games and is now no longer leading the NL West. Strangely, the Rockies are 6-3 on the road, but just 1-3 at home. DJ LeMahieu is second in the National League in average, hitting .444.
11. Baltimore Orioles (7-6, previous No. 11) – Adam Jones is pacing the O’s offense as he’s hitting .438 with five home runs and 16 RBIs going into play Tuesday. With as many injuries as the team has had to deal with so far, Baltimore will be looking to stay in the hunt and then make its run once back to full strength.
12. Houston Astros (7-6, previous No. 12) – Don’t look now, but the Astros are on top of the AL West standings. Granted they are just a game over .500, but they are still ahead of the A’s, Angels and Mariners. Luis Valbuena is pacing the offense with five home runs on the year.
13. Arizona Diamondbacks (7-6, previous No. 22) – As was the case last year, Paul Goldschmidt is dominating opposing pitching. The first baseman has hit five homers to lead the NL and has also driven in 15 runs, also the most in the league. He will continue to lead the team again.
14. Oakland Athletics (7-7, previous No. 19) – Oakland has a plus-27 run differential, the only positive mark in the AL West, but the A'sare still sitting at .500 and are in second place. The A’s will need to get better outings from their starters, especially Sonny Gray, who has struggled to open the year.
15. Toronto Blue Jays (6-7, previous No. 4) – Toronto is averaging the most runs in the game withseven, but the Jaysaren’t getting good pitching, thus the reason for the below .500 start. If the Blue Jays can somehow get above-average pitching they could be one of the most dangerous teams in the league with their powerful offense.
16. Cincinnati Reds (6-7, previous No. 6) – After getting off to a 4-2 start, the Reds have gone downhill since, as they are now below .500 this season. Off the field they are making news with manager Bryan Price going on a huge tirade on the media, which certainly is an added distraction.
17. New York Yankees (6-7, previous No. 23) – The Yankees are 6-7, but have looked pretty good this past week, which included a sweep ofthe Rays in St. Petersburg over the weekend. With what is shaping up to be a mediocre AL East, the Yankees, and all the other teams in the division should remain in striking distance all year.
18. Tampa Bay Rays (6-7. previous No. 16) – After a good first week, Tampa Bay has struggled a bit of late, losing three straight games. The Raysare just 1-5 at home and have a minus-12 run differential, which is the only negative one in the AL East.
19. Washington Nationals (6-7, previous No. 21) – Aside from Ryan Zimerman’s 11 RBIs, there hasn’t been much positive coming from the Nationals, who had pretty high expectations for the year. Once the starting rotation gets settled in, they will surely turn things around.
20. Pittsburgh Pirates (6-7, previous No. 25) – The Pirates have a plus-6 run differential, but are still a game below .500. Pedro Alvarez is off to a hot start at the plate, belting four home runs through the first 13 games. Led by their pitching, the Pirates could be a dangerous team.
21. Chicago White Sox (5-7, previous No. 27) – The White Sox are 3-1 at home, but 2-6 on the road. With the moves they made in the offseason there’s no question they will be better than teams in the past, but just how good remains to be seen.
22. Texas Rangers (5-8, previous No. 20) – Texas will hope to avoid a last place finish like last year and it will have to do it without Yu Darvish as he is out for the year. So far the Rangersare having trouble filling the void as they have allowed 66 runs in 13 games.
23. Seattle Mariners (5-8, previous No. 10) – The Mariners are proof that not one player can do it all, as no hitter in the game is hotter than Nelson Cruz with eight home runs and 16 RBIs, but they are three games under .500.
24. Los Angeles Angels (5-8, previous No. 24) – On and off the field it hasn’t been a good start to the 2015 season for the Angels. They have lost seven of their last 10 games and for as good as their offense usually is, they are averaging just 3.54 runs a game.
25. Minnesota Twins (5-8, previous No. 30) – The Twins started 1-5 so they are playing better baseball, but still have a minus-26 run differential, the worst mark in the AL Central.
26. Cleveland Indians (4-8, previous No. 26) – Cleveland is averaging just 3.17 runs a game, a main reason why it is four games below .500 through the first 12 games of the year. Injuries to the offense certainly hasn't helped their cause.
27. Philadelphia Phillies (4-9, previous No. 17) – The story with the Phillies’ start to the year has been their offense, as it has been miserable. Through 13 games they have averaged just 2.46 runs per game, and you’re not going to win many games hitting like that.
28. San Francisco Giants (4-10, previous No. 18) – The Giants are struggling big time, as they lost seven straight games at one point this week, which certainly was unexpected for the defending champs. They have allowed 4.42 runs a game, which isn’t up to San Fran standards.
29. Miami Marlins (3-10, previous No. 28) – Miami has lost four straight games and after just over two weeks into the season manager Mike Redmond is on the hot seat.
30. Milwaukee Brewers (2-11, previous No. 29) – The Brewers have been brutal this year, averaging 2.38 runs a game and allowing an average of 5.46 and having a minus-40 run differential.