Pirates stampede into top spot

Updated: July 1, 2013, 12:10 PM ET
Week:

ESPN.com

Riding a nine-game winning streak as well as having the most wins in the majors, the Pittsburgh Pirates take over the No. 1 spot in Week 14 of our Power Rankings.

The St. Louis Cardinals and Boston Red Sox both dropped one spot to second and third, respectively, while the Texas Rangers jumped five spots to No. 4 and the Oakland A's moved up one to No. 5 to round out the top five.

This week's voters were Jim Bowden of ESPN Insider and Tim Kurkjian of ESPN The Magazine. Most of the team comments come courtesy of the fan bloggers on the SweetSpot Blog Network. Meanwhile, which teams should be among baseball's top five? Go ahead and rank the teams yourself.

Tell us what you think about the Power Rankings. Use the hashtag #ESPNMLBPOWER.

2013 Power Rankings: July 1
RANKTEAM / RECORD TRENDINGCOMMENTS
1
Pirates
51-30
6
Last Week: 7
The best record in all of baseball? Fifty-one wins in the first three months of the season? 28-13 at home? It might just be time to believe in the Buccos. The offense is still inconsistent, but the pitching keeps coming up big and they have by far the best defense in the majors (by defense efficiency ratio). -- Diane Firstman, Value Over Replacement Grit
2
1
Last Week: 1
The Cardinals have hit a rough stretch as they're 2-6 over their past eight games. They now find themselves looking up at the Pirates in the NL Central standings. -- ESPN.com
3
Red Sox
50-34
1
Last Week: 2
For only the fourth time in franchise history, the Red Sox have won 50 games before the start of July. Last season, they didn't win their 50th game until July 28. -- Hunter Golden, Fire Brand of the AL
4
Rangers
48-34
5
Last Week: 9
Elvis Andrus' offense continues to be a big problem with his meager .243/.300/.287 line. And yet Ron Washington continues to bat him first or second (he's been hitting second since mid-June). -- David Schoenfied, ESPN.com
5
1
Last Week: 6
Winning four of five from tough NL Central teams Cincinnati and St. Louis is a boost to the A's after a poor 10-game stretch against AL West rivals Seattle and Texas. Also, Bartolo Colon has 11 wins. Ponder that. -- Jason Wojciechowski, Beaneball
6
Braves
48-34
1
Last Week: 5
Julio Teheran put together a great June. In five starts in the month, he compiled a 1.95 ERA while striking out 37 and walking only four batters in 32 1/3 innings pitched. -- ESPN.com
7
Orioles
47-36
1
Last Week: 8
The Orioles' rotation and bullpen delivered the second-worst performance in June. Their offense, however, was tops in home runs, thanks mainly to Chris Davis. And their fielding has been second only to the Royals. This team could be great if it were to acquire a solid pitcher. -- Jon Shepherd, Camden Depot
8
Reds
46-36
4
Last Week: 4
One year ago this week, Joey Votto hurt his knee, yet the Reds went on a magnificent run to win the division. Can Dusty Baker work his magic again for the reeling Redlegs, who have lost seven of nine? -- Chad Dotson, Redleg Nation
9
Tigers
43-37
6
Last Week: 3
The Tigers' mediocre 14-13 record in June overshadowed the continued brilliance of Max Scherzer (12-0). Culprits include a flaky bullpen, lack of clutch run production (8-12 in one-run games) and a batting average that drops by 50-plus points on the road. Perhaps relief will be found in the return of Anibal Sanchez and call-up of young flamethrower Bruce Rondon. -- Ryan Callery, Walkoff Woodward
10
Indians
44-38
6
Last Week: 16
The Indians, who have had their struggles on the road this season, managed to take six of eight games from the Orioles and White Sox on their current road trip. Jason Kipnis completed a torrid June, where he hit .419/.517/.699. Justin Masterson now leads the majors in shutouts with three. -- Stephanie Liscio, It's Pronounced Lajaway
11
1
Last Week: 10
Patrick Corbin is 9-0 with a 2.22 ERA, but the rest of the Diamondbacks' rotation is 13-28 with a 4.81 ERA. Trevor Cahill is 0-6 with a 7.91 ERA over his past eight starts. -- David Schoenfied, ESPN.com
12
Yankees
42-39
1
Last Week: 11
The Yankees finished with the third-worst record in the majors in June at 11-16 while scoring the fewest runs. Could it be that they actually need Alex Rodriguez? -- David Schoenfied, ESPN.com
13
Rays
43-39
1
Last Week: 14
Reigning AL Cy Young winner David Price will rejoin the Rays' rotation on Tuesday after missing six weeks with a triceps injury. Meanwhile, the status of Evan Longoria (plantar fasciitis) is unknown. After a rough stretch on the schedule, Tampa Bay will head into the All-Star break with 14 games against the Astros, White Sox and Twins. Now seems like a good time to make a move in the standings. -- Tommy Rancel, The Process Report
14
1
Last Week: 15
The Nats have won seven of their past 11, have Bryce Harper returning and are starting a seven-game homestand against the woeful Brewers and not hot anymore Padres. If they can't make strides now, it may never happen. -- Harper Gordek, Nats Baseball
15
Rockies
41-42
3
Last Week: 18
Despite being two games under .500 for the month, and losing Troy Tulowitzki for an extended period of time, the Rockies managed to post the NL West's best run differential for June at plus-1. Their weak division has left them with an outside shot at the playoffs. -- Logan Burdine, Blake Street Bulletin
16
4
Last Week: 12
A 2-5 week dips Toronto back below the .500 mark. The Jays will look to bounce back this week against two struggling AL Central clubs -- Detroit and Minnesota. -- Matthew Koster, Mop-up Duty
17
Padres
40-42
--

Last Week: 17
From the random facts department: The Padres are getting their best production out of their No. 7 hitters; they collectively lead the team in OPS (.797), home runs (13) and RBIs (46). -- David Schoenfied, ESPN.com
18
Giants
39-42
5
Last Week: 13
Buster Posey tore it up in June, batting .374 with a 1.062 OPS during the month. -- ESPN.com
19
--

Last Week: 19
GM Ruben Amaro has said he wants Chase Utley to stay in red pinstripes for life. Utley is hitting .284/.348/.517 on the season and is near the top of almost every single franchise career leaderboard for second basemen. Parting would be more sorrowful than sweet. -- Paul Boye, Crashburn Alley
20
Dodgers
38-43
3
Last Week: 23
The Dodgers are still in last place, but it's a closer-to-first-place last place after closing June with eight wins in nine games. Obligatory Yasiel Puig note: He finished with 44 hits in June, second most by a rookie in his first month in the majors (Joe DiMaggio had 48 in 1936). -- David Schoenfied, ESPN.com
21
Angels
39-43
--

Last Week: 21
The Angels are starting to build some steam. They've won six straight games, but this week their hot streak will be tested as the Cardinals and Red Sox visit the Big A. St. Louis and Boston hold the second- and third-best records in baseball. -- Hudson Belinsky, Halos Daily
22
Royals
38-41
2
Last Week: 20
As the Jeff Francoeur era ends and Johnny Giavotella gets another chance to take the second-base job, a 3-3 week leaves the Royals 4 1/2 games behind the Tigers. Eric Hosmer's power stroke may have turned a corner, as he hit three homers during the week after having only four in the first 71 games. -- Diane Firstman, Value Over Replacement Grit
23
Twins
36-42
1
Last Week: 22
Having lost six of their past nine games, the Twins are closer to last place than first, but fans are still buzzing from Kyle Gibson's impressive debut over the weekend. -- Nick Nelson, Twins Daily 
24
1
Last Week: 25
Eric Wedge lost his DH on Saturday night and ran out of position players, leading to pitcher Joe Saunders pinch-hitting in extra innings and making the final out in the M's 5-3 loss to the Cubs. Your 2013 Mariners! -- David Schoenfied, ESPN.com
25
Cubs
35-45
1
Last Week: 24
Theo Epstein has gone on record as saying that there are even-money odds that the Cubs will make a trade before the All-Star break. July should be a fun month for Cubs fans and it probably won't have to do with the play on the field. -- Joe Aiello, A View From The Bleachers
26
--

Last Week: 26
As if things weren't bad enough after going 8-19 in June, here's a piece of sobering news for White Sox fans: They haven't even played the Tigers yet. They have 19 games left against Detroit, nearly a quarter of their schedule. -- David Schoenfied, ESPN.com
27
Mets
33-45
1
Last Week: 28
After an awful first two months of the season, Dillon Gee compiled a 2.73 ERA in five starts in June. -- ESPN.com
28
Brewers
32-48
1
Last Week: 27
The Brewers are buried in the basement in the NL Central, but Jean Segura continues to be a bright spot. He leads the National League with 105 hits. -- ESPN.com
29
Astros
30-52
--

Last Week: 29
Bud Norris' trade value continues to increase as he's posted a 2.42 ERA over his past eight starts, allowing just two home runs. -- David Schoenfied, ESPN.com
30
Marlins
29-51
--

Last Week: 30
Make it 13 wins for the Marlins in their past 20 games, as Jeff Mathis hit the 3,000th homer and fourth walk-off grand slam in franchise history in a 6-2 victory Sunday. At 15-10, Miami had the best June record among the NL East clubs. They've allowed more than three runs just once in their past 13 games. -- Diane Firstman, Value Over Replacement Grit

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