Evan Gattis is more than making up for the loss of Brian McCann on both sides of the plate. The rookie has helped the Braves roll into the top spot with three series sweeps in a row, including one over the highly touted Nationals.
2 Giants 9-4 -1
Matt Cain and Tim Lincecum might be having rough starts, but the rest of the team has been there to pick them up. Barry Zito is looking nearly unhittable and offense is breaking out the lumber.
3 Tigers 7-5 +3
The bullpen might be struggling, but the Tigers are fortunate enough to have one of the best lineups in the league. Combine those bats with a good starting rotation and Detroit might not have to lean too much on its relievers.
4 Athletics 10-4 +5
Jarrod Parker was one of reasons the Athletics won the AL West last season with a 13-8 record. This year, he is struggling to hold his spot in the rotation after getting smoked in his first three starts. 5 Cardinals 8-5 +2
The bullpen isn’t looking too good with the loss of Jason Motte. The Cardinals are fortunate enough to have a strong lineup, paired with excellent starting pitching to carry the load.
6 Rangers 8-5 +2
Sure, the Rangers’ lineup usually packs a punch, but now the starting pitching is starting to look dominant as well with Yu Darvish, Alexi Ogando, and Derek Holland leading the way. 7 Nationals 8-5 -2
The Nationals ran into a wall against the Braves, getting swept by their division rivals. Not to worry though, everyone else has struggled against Atlanta this season. A trip to Miami for Bryce Harper and Co. should help them get back on track. 8 Diamondbacks 8-4 +3
Paul Goldschmidt isn’t slowing down, and neither are the Diamondbacks. The Snakes are getting contributions from nearly everyone in the lineup, and the bullpen is among the best in the National League.
9 Dodgers 7-6 -5
Thanks to Carlos Quentin, the Dodgers will be without one of their key players in Zach Greinke for a couple months. Good thing LA has pitching depth and a star-studded lineup that should keep them afloat for the time being.
10 Reds 6-7 -7
Is this the real Reds or just an early season fluke? Week 1, they look like one of the league’s best; Week 2, they drop two of three to the Cardinals and get swept out of Pittsburgh over the weekend.
11 Red Sox 8-4 +2
Clay Buchholz flirts with a no-hitter and Jon Lester is dominating again, helping the Sox exceed expectations so far. But the fanfare surrounding spring training’s big story in Jackie Bradley Jr. is subsiding due to the rookie’s struggles at the plate. 12 Orioles 6-6
Chris Davis continues to have one of the hottest bats in baseball, and the success of Adam Jones can’t be overlooked either. The starting pitching is a bit of a problem, but the bullpen has been able to make up for it.
13 Royals 7-5 +8
Despite the lineup’s modest start to the regular season after a big spring training, the Royals are racking up wins with their new-look rotation led by Ervin Santana, James Shields and Jeremy Guthrie.
14 Phillies 6-7 +3
Roy Halladay got back on track against the Marlins on Sunday, notching his 200th career win. Cole Hamels showed signs of returning to form as well. Combine the two with Cliff Lee, who hasn’t missed a step, and the Phillies should dominate lineups.
15 Rockies 8-4 +3
Are the Rockies benefitting from playing the lowly Padres for half of their first 12 games? This week should be Colorado’s first real test of the season as it takes a step away from its success against San Diego.
16 Mets 7-4 +6
Who need R.A. Dickey when you have Matt Harvey? The Mets are feeling no pain after trading away last year’s Cy Young winner, as the budding young star continues to win games in impressive fashion.
17 Yankees 6-5 +6
The “B-team” lineup is playing well while several stars are on the mend. With CC Sabathia, Andy Pettitte, and Hiroki Kuroda holding down the pitching staff, the Yankees should be a force when their stars return.
18 Angels 4-9 -8
What’s wrong with the Halos? Josh Hamilton, with his five-year $125M contract, has hardly lived up to expectations but started to show signs of returning to his usual form after slugging a couple homers against the Astros last week.
19 Blue Jays 6-7 -4
Jose Reyes, one of the few in the Jays lineup who had been hitting, suffered an ankle injury that could keep him out until the All-Star break. R.A. Dickey finally notched a win — vs. Kansas City — but Mark Buehrle and Josh Johnson continue to struggle.
20 Indians 5-6
Justin Masterson is off to a phenomenal start, but the rest of the pitching staff is not. The lineup isn’t scoring much either. 21 White Sox 5-8 -7
Jake Peavy is pitching well, but it is a different story for the rest of the rotation. Plus, the lineup isn’t doing any better. The bullpen is fine, but the White Sox need everyone to click to have success.
22 Rays 4-8 -6
Evan Longoria and Ben Zobrist are good, but they can’t do it all as the rest of the lineup strikes little fear in opposing pitchers. When the offense struggled in the past, the pitching staff would pick up the slack, but that hasn’t been the case in 2013.
23 Pirates 6-7 +4
After a horrible first week, the Pirates turned it around by taking two of three from Arizona and sweeping the Reds. This week will be a real test as Pittsburgh faces St. Louis and Atlanta.
24 Mariners 6-8 +1
Felix Hernandez finally earned his first win of the season against the surging A’s, and Hisashi Iwakuma continues to hold his own. Michael Morse is still on fire, but the rest of the lineup needs to do more to pick up the pitching.
25 Twins 5-7 -6
The Twins take a spiral downward after a decent opening week as they were swept by the Royals and lost two to the Mets in a shortened series. No offense and no pitching means no wins for Minnesota. 26 Brewers 3-8 -2
The Brewers must be in trouble if they are relying on rookie shortstop Jean Segura. Luckily they still have Ryan Braun to shoulder the load with several injuries in the lineup.
27 Cubs 4-8 -1
Five wild pitches in an inning by Edwin Jackson and Michael Bowden, setting a new MLB record, should be enough to explain what is wrong with the Cubs.
28 Astros 4-9 +2
Maybe they aren’t so bad after all? After setting a new strikeout record to begin the season, last week’s surged showed the Astros are capable of having some pop in their young lineup.
29 Padres 3-10 -1
Carlos Quentin was suspended eight games for charging the mound against the Dodgers’ Zach Greinke, leaving the already inept lineup even more vulnerable. The rotation is the worst in the majors and won’t be able to save the Padres either.
30 Marlins 2-11 -1
Giancarolo Stanton is off to a horrendous start, as well as the rest of the Marlins’ lineup. The rotation, led by 20-year-old rookie Jose Fernandez, is the lone bright spot in Miami so far.