MLB Power Rankings 9.0 (Week of May 26): Phillies and Yankees still on top, Mets slip-sliding away

Yankees Aaron Judge celebrating in power rankings
New York Yankees’ Aaron Judge, right, celebrates with teammate Alex Verdugo after hitting a two-run home run during the first inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Saturday, May 25, 2024, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

The Philadelphia Phillies and New York Yankees met in the 2009 World Series, and the way our ninth MLB Power Rankings are shaping up, they seem to be on a collision course for a rematch this fall.

Elsewhere, a surprising team cracks the top 5, and the downtrodden Mets continue to sink like a stone with one bad loss after another.

Let’s get to it! 

2024 MLB Power Rankings 8.0

  1. Philadelphia Phillies (Previous #1): A puzzling series loss in Colorado notwithstanding, the Phillies continue to top the league in overall play, having swept the defending world champion Texas Rangers earlier in the week. With Atlanta now 6 games behind starting play Monday and having lost Ronad Acuña Jr. for the season, the Phillies have the opportunity to put the NL East away quickly.
  2. New York Yankees (Previous #2): Another good week for the Bombers with a series split with the first-place Mariners and then taking 2 of 3 from the Padres. They continue to solidify their position as top dogs in the AL, with continued great pitching from, of all starters, Luis Gil — who boasts a 2.11 ERA with 70 strikeouts in 55.1 innings pitched. 
  3. Cleveland Guardians (Previous #5): That’s right, the Guardians have leapfrogged the Dodgers and Orioles into the top 3 after winning nine straight, including making mincemeat of two bad teams in the Mets and Angels last week. Andres Gimenez keeps getting clutch hits and giving the Cleveland faithful plenty of reasons to forget about Francisco Lindor.
  4. Baltimore Orioles (Previous #4): The birds followed up three straight losses to the Cardinals with a four-game sweep of the lowly Chicago White Sox. Kyle Bradish looked like a genuine ace in the series finale with 7 no-hit innings and 11 strikeouts.
  5. Los Angeles Dodgers (Previous #3): The Dodgers stumbled badly this week with five straight losses to the Diamondbacks and Reds, but they’re more concerned about the state of Shohei Ohtani’s hamstring. Manager Dave Roberts says Ohtani’s playing at about 90%, but he went just 3 for 12 in the Reds series to close out the week.
  6. Kansas City Royals (Previous #7): Sunday’s loss to the Rays was the only thing that could cool the Royals down lately, as they won their previous eight straight games. But because the Guardians have been equally hot, Kansas City entered Monday 2 ½ games out of first. Who knew the American League Central would have two of baseball’s best teams on Memorial Day? 

    Atlanta Braves’ Ronald Acuña Jr., right, walks off the field with a trainer after being injured while running the bases during the first inning of a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Pittsburgh, Sunday, May 26, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

  7. Atlanta Braves (Previous #6): Atlanta faces something of a crossroads entering Memorial Day, after splitting the week with the Cubs and Pirates and then losing Ronald Acuña Jr. for the season with a torn ACL. There’s enough offensive talent to overcome losing Acuña, but the core (Matt Olsen, Austin Riley, Ozzie Albies) have yet to get hot this season at the plate. Now would be a good time for them to start.
  8. Milwaukee Brewers (Previous #9): The Brew Crew had another so-so week, going 3-3 against the Marlins and Red Sox, but managed to gain ground in the National League Central. Despite ranking 5th in the league in slugging percentage, their offense could use a jolt of power; none of their roster has more than 9 home runs all season so far.
  9. Seattle Mariners (Previous #8): After splitting a series with the Yankees earlier in the week, the Mariners followed that up by losing 2 of 3 to the Nationals. They hold a three game lead in the AL West, but that’s still a very wide-open affair with the Texas Rangers and suddenly hot Houston Astros breathing down their necks.
  10. San Diego Padres (Previous #12): Despite a so-so week in which they beat the Reds in a three-game set before dropping a three-game set to the Yankees, the Padres keep moving up in the world. Luis Arraez deservedly won NL Player of the Week honors as he posted a dominant .472 batting average in 36 plate appearances. Before long, he’ll be considered the best Padres hitter this side of Tony Gwynn.
  11. Minnesota Twins (Previous #13): Katy Perry had a song for this team: “Hot N Cold.” The streaking Twins followed up a seven-game losing streak by rattling 5 wins in the following 6 games to the Nationals and Rangers. Are they in or are they out of the NL Central race? Talk to us next week.
  12. Chicago Cubs (Previous #10): The Cubs hit the skids a bit this week with 4 losses in 5 games to the Braves and the suddenly-hot Cardinals. But the Cubbies figure to be in the NL Central race all season thanks in part to the incredible pitching of rookie lefthander Shota Imanaga, who has an incredible 0.84 ERA in 53.2 innings pitched. To think everyone thought Yoshinobu Yamamato was the biggest free agent out of Japan this offseason.
  13. San Francisco Giants (Previous #18): The Giants got red hot over the last week, taking 4 of 6 from the terrible Pirates and Mets, vaulted themselves over .500 and staked their claim in the NL Wild Card race. But the injury bug bit them again; they lost first baseman LaMonte Wade Jr. for at least four weeks due to a hamstring strain.
  14. Boston Red Sox (Previous #16): The Sawx continue to hang around, and 4 wins in 6 games against the Rays and Brewers vaulted them back over the .500 mark. Despite being picked to finished last in the AL East, Boston could wind up remaining in the Wild Card mix after all.
  15. Detroit Tigers (Previous #14): What an odd week for the young Tigers. They were swept by the Royals, then wound up taking 3 of 4 from the Blue Jays. In five of their games, their pitching staff gave up 8 runs or more. 
  16. Tampa Bay Rays (Previous #11): The Rays seemed to be making a move last week in the playoff race, but they cooled off quick — losing 5 of 6 to the Red Sox and Royals. Their lineup took another hit with Josh Lowe going down with an oblique strain.
  17. Arizona Diamondbacks (Previous #17): After beating the Dodgers 2 of 3 in the first half of the week, the Snakes wound up playing down to the last-place Marlins and lost 2 of 3 to them. Late-preseason pickup Jordan Montgomery is rounding into form after a slow start, dropping his ERA by a full run and helping the D-Backs win each of his starts since May 1. 

    St. Louis Cardinals’ Alec Burleson, left, scores past Chicago Cubs catcher Miguel Amaya during the eighth inning of a baseball game Saturday, May 25, 2024, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

  18. St. Louis Cardinals (Previous #24): Don’t look now, but the Cardinals are suddenly surging. They won 5 games last week including a sweep over the Orioles and a rain-shortened two-game sweep of the rival Cubs. They’re within 4 ½ games of the first-place Brewers with plenty of time left to catch them.
  19. Houston Astros (Previous #19): A 3-3 week against the Athletics and Angels poured some cold water on the Astros’ hot run of late. Still, they entered Monday 3 ½ games behind the first-place Mariners, the only team in the AL West over .500. 
  20. Texas Rangers (Previous #15): The defending World Champions of baseball look like a shell of themselves this year. Last week, they dropped 5 of 6 to the Phillies and Twins, with a normally potent lineup mustering up more than 3 runs in a game only once. Their pitching staff, already down Max Scherzer and Jacob deGrom (you might remember them), suffered another blow with Jon Gray going on the injured list.
  21. Washington Nationals (Previous #21): Washington continues to surprise for not being as terrible as most forecasters predicted at the start of the season. Nobody expects the Nationals to contend for a wild card spot, but with the Mets’ struggles, they could wind up in third place when all is said and done.
  22. Toronto Blue Jays (Previous #22): After beating the White Sox 2 of 3, the Jays wound up losing 3 of 4 to the Tigers in rather convincing fashion. With most of the offense still lacking and an underachieving pitching staff, they continue to look like a franchise spinning its wheels in the mud.
  23. Oakland Athletics (Previous #25): The A’s recovered from a poor stretch with a 3-3 week against the Rockies and Astros, but they have some nice young players rounding into form in Mason Miller, with 47 strikeouts in just 24 innings pitched, and left fielder Brent Rooker, with 11 home runs and a .919 OPS. Lots of silver linings in the black cloud above Oakland Coliseum these days. 
  24. Pittsburgh Pirates (Previous #23): A 3-3 week was punctuated by a surprising Pirates series victory over the Braves. Not sure how things will go for Pittsburgh in the months ahead, but the addition of Paul Skenes seems to have provided a little more spark.
  25. New York Mets (Previous #20): Mets fans set the bar low for 2024 as they look toward the future, and yet somehow the Mets themselves still can’t clear it. They should have swept the Giants, but the bullpen faltered in the first two games in truly excruciating fashion. Shoulda, coulda, woulda — the Mets are in disarray again, and one wonders how much longer soon-to-be free agent Pete Alonso will be wearing the orange and blue.
  26. Cincinnati Reds (Previous #26): Make it make sense. The Reds lose 2 of 3 to the Padres, then wind up sweeping the first-place super-spending Dodgers. Nevertheless, their offense continues to struggle mightily. 
  27. Miami Marlins (Previous #28): Like the opening bars of the “Jaws” theme, the Marlins are sneaking up quietly, having won 4 of 6 last week from the Diamondbacks and Brewers, and 8 of their last 12 overall. They’re still 18 under .500 and far, far out of contention for anything — but they stand just 4 games and closing in on the fourth-place Mets like a shark eyeing a chumline. 
  28. Colorado Rockies (Previous #27): In yet another episode of “That’s Baseball, Suzyn,” the hapless Rockies took 2 of 3 from the best-in-baseball Phillies after losing 2 of 3 to the A’s. 
  29. Los Angeles Angels (Previous #29): Remember the movie “Angels in the Outfield”? The real-life Halos need a miracle even bigger than that plotline just to finish fourth in the AL West. 
  30. Chicago White Sox (Previous #30): Not a single White Sox position player has a WAR of 1.0. Not one! Move over, 1962 Mets, you might have company.