It’s time for our first series of NL East Power Rankings. Power Rankings indicate who has the power and momentum in the division and with three contenders this year, they’ll change weekly. So who is at the top? Who is at the bottom? And why do the Marlins have the same record as the Braves?
#1 – The Atlanta Braves
The Braves (3-3) have come out of the gate with their offense firing on most cylinders. The scary part of that is they’re still 2nd in the NL in average (.292), runs (40), slugging percentage (.470) and OPS (.822). They’ve already shown their ability to battle back and put games into extra innings, as well as outscore the Mets 14-6 in the last two games. Their pitching staff is not working as it should yet – the bullpen is recovering from early jitters and Mike Hampton is back on the DL (Surprise? Hardly). But solid starts from both John Smoltz and Jair Jurrjens have put the Braves in a good spot to be – at the top of the division early.
#2 – Florida Marlins
How are these guys able to be 3-3? They’ve taken it to the Pirates. I don’t think they’ll be in the #2 position long, so don’t get used to it. They’ll begin climbing the ranks downward.
#3 – New York Mets
These guys would be in the two position were it not for the Marlins’ strong start. Santana is looking good, Pedro is hurt and their offense wasn’t clicking during their last series against the Braves. The Mets’ bullpen hasn’t been stellar so far either. But they’re the Mets, and they’ll surely rebound strong. Can’t discount them.
#4 – Philadelphia Phillies
The Phillies may be in the cellar right now as far as standings go, but they’re not completely dead yet. However, they’ve had issues with the starting pitching and relief corps. And their highly touted offense has had a slow start – scoring only 27 runs so far – that’s fourth in the NL East.
#5 – Washington Nationals
The Nationals have issues. They just lost a series – the entire series – to Cardinals. The Nationals did eek out a win against the Braves to start the season (lucky break on that Moylan pitch), but they’re going to need to start winning the easy games against the teams that are worse than them. Thus, they’re in the basement, at least for the first week of the power rankings.
Did I mis-rank the teams? Any of the 12 Marlins fans that are young enough to own computers want to whine about them not being at the top? Leave us a comment and we’ll hash it out.
Tags: Atlanta Braves, Florida Marlins, New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, Power Rankings, Washington Nationals
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