Welcome to the third edition of the MLB Power Rankings. As we all wait for Juan Soto next team news to potentially shift the axis of the league, we've been welcomed with a wacky return from the All-Star break.
The Los Angeles Dodgers have lost two straight to the Washington Nationals — yes, those Washington Nationals — and the New York Yankees have lost two of their last three. And hey, did I mention the Oakland Athletics are one of the hottest teams in baseball right now? They've won seven of their last 10.
Speaking of the Yankees and Dodgers, one of the more notable elements of this week's Power Rankings may go unnoticed. The gap between these two teams is as close as it's been, with their radius separated by just .010 percentage points. A significant reason for this is that the Dodgers pitching staff is starting to gain a slight separation from the rest of the league. The reason for this? They are inducing tons of soft contact. Collectively, they have the lowest hard-hit rate in the league.
We'll talk about the Blue Jays more in just a few moments, but wow, what a reversal. Two weeks ago, this looked like a team headed straight for a disappointing season, and now they appear to be one of the best teams in the league. Oddsmakers have taken notice as well as Toronto now has the sixth-best odds to win the World Series, which is directly where they fall in our Power Rankings.
You can find Toronto to win it all at +1,800 on FanDuel. However, I'm still looking for a price around +2,100 (4.5% implied probability) to see it as a value bet.
Let's examine this week's MLB Power Rankings below:
MLB Power Rankings: Week of July 27
|Rank||Team (Radius)||Last Week's Rank||Record||World Series odds|
|1||New York Yankees (.686)||1||66-32||+380|
|2||Los Angeles Dodgers (.676)||2||64-32||+360|
|3||Houston Astros (.634)||3||64-34||+500|
|4||New York Mets (.604)||4||60-37||+750|
|5||Atlanta Braves (.602)||5||59-41||+850|
|6||Toronto Blue Jays (.575)||9||54-43||+1,200|
|7||Philadephia Phillies (.555)||6||51-47||+4,000|
|8||Minnesota Twins (.544)||7||52-45||+5,000|
|9||San Diego Padres (.542)||10||55-45||+2,200|
|10||Seattle Mariners (.535)||11||53-45||+5,000|
|11||Milwaukee Brewers (.534)||14||54-44||+2,000|
|12||St. Louis Cardinals (.530)||13||51-47||+4,500|
|13||Tampa Bay Rays (.521)||12||52-45||+4,000|
|14||Baltimore Orioles (.520)||20||49-48||+5,000|
|15||Chicago White Sox (.518)||17||49-48||+3,000|
|16||San Francisco Giants (.515)||8||48-49||+6,000|
|17||Boston Red Sox (.512)||15||49-49||+5,500|
|18||Cleveland Guardians (.508)||16||49-47||+10,000|
|19||Miami Marlins (.505)||19||46-51||+40,000|
|20||Arizona Diamondbacks (.504)||23||44-53||+200,000|
|21||Texas Rangers (.491)||21||43-53||+100,000|
|22||Los Angeles Angels (.469)||18||41-56||+50,000|
|23||Colorado Rockies (.451)||22||44-54||+200,000|
|24||Chicago Cubs (.447)||24||40-57||+200,000|
|25||Cincinnati Reds (.414)||25||37-59||+200,000|
|26||Kansas City Royals (.412)||26||39-58||+200,000|
|27||Washington Nationals (.400)||29||34-65||+200,000|
|28||Detroit Tigers (.395)||28||40-59||+100,000|
|29||Oakland Athletics (.385)||30||37-63||+200,000|
|30||Pittsburgh Pirates (.383)||27||40-58||+200,000|
Toronto Blue Jays (6)
The Blue Jays (+3) haven't made the most significant jump in our rankings, but they've made the most noticeable. Of course, by now, you've heard about the franchise-record 28 runs they scored against the Boston Red Sox over the weekend, but their offensive display hasn't stopped there.
The Jays are averaging just over seven runs per game in their last three outings, which is second in baseball, and have a team batting average of .268. For my money, this is the best offense in baseball right now. They become serious contenders if they can find some bullpen arms before the trade deadline.
Toronto has made these strides despite ranking 20th as a pitching staff in our Power Rankings. They are the only team in the Top 10 of the rankings with a staff ranked outside the Top 15. While we're not seeing value on a World Series bet on them quite yet, it's certainly getting close.
Baltimore Orioles (14)
I'm not sure what the Baltimore Orioles (+6) have to do to be considered more of a playoff threat, but it's hard for me not to be a believer. My projections are giving them an 18% chance to make the postseason. That implies considerable value is still on the current number available on DraftKings at +1,800.
The Baltimore #Orioles, who have lost 333 games the past three full seasons, have a winning record (49-48).— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) July 27, 2022
They are just three games out of a wild-card berth, tied with the #RedSox and #Guardians for the final spot.
My projections say that the price should be around +450! The O's will be looking for a sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays tonight, and if they can get it, they'll likely be within one game of the final Wild Card spot in the American League.
I'm fully prepared to appoint myself as the Orioles' train conductor. This team is seriously undervalued.
San Francisco Giants (16)
The curious case of the San Francisco Giants (-8) continues to mystify my Power Rankings modeling. I wrote last week that I was in personal disagreement with how high my power rankings made the Giants look. This week, they took the most significant tumble in the rankings of any team to date.
Carlos Rodón furiously kicked a bat which hit Thairo Estrada in the leg ???? pic.twitter.com/8XXIe2iJtG— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) July 27, 2022
However, their win expectancy has propped them up and says they are about seven games above .500 despite being a few games below. What that suggests is that they've been unlucky. However, unlucky doesn't matter when you're losing to the Arizona Diamondbacks, something the Giants have done on back-to-back nights.
Los Angeles Angels (22)
The Halos (-3) took another fall in this week's Power Rankings. By far the league's biggest disappointment of the season, I'm not sure what more you can say about them.
The Los Angeles Angels have now won 15 games TOTAL since May 24.— Ben Heisler (@bennyheis) July 27, 2022
They are 6-3 in games Shohei Ohtani is their SP, and 9-36 in games in the others.
Three of those wins came vs. the Kansas City Royals. All three wins have been shutouts.
On any night, selecting Over on the opposing pitcher's strikeout prop is an auto-bet, as the Angels easily have the highest whiff rate in baseball. Currently, they lead the league in strikeouts per game with 9.7 and have lost seven of the last 10 games.
Power Rankings methodology
Chris Hatfield's MLB Power Rankings are based heavily on the Pythagorean Theorem, pioneered by Bill James.
This process estimates the percentage of games a team should win and, therefore, where they fall in line in the MLB hierarchy. After that, he adds some secret sauce to develop a team's "radius," which includes a formula comprised of a team's collective expected ERA, run value, and wOBA, among other items.
This process not only attempts to show you how one formula views the landscape, but also which team has the best value to win the World Series vs. oddsmakers' expectations.
Through various sims, he finds the implied probability of one team achieving postseason success to help readers like yourself cash tickets. Just as importantly, Chris’ MLB Power Rankings are not a subjective list — and do not reflect odds between two teams in a given matchup.