MLB Power Rankings: Mariners making playoff push, Dodgers dominating

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Here come the Seattle Mariners! After being a .500 team for the better part of four months, Seattle has won eight of its past 10 games, 13 of 17 and 16 of 22. All of those games came against teams in the postseason hunt. 

The Mariners were the lone new entrant in this week’s poll, while most of the other contenders stayed put. 

Here’s my latest top 10, with a few interesting factoids about each club.

1. Atlanta Braves (75-42; last week 1)
As they have all season, the Braves continue to pound opposing pitchers in August. They lead the majors in runs per game (7.83), hits (141), home runs (25), extra-base hits (56), batting average (.321), on-base percentage (.394), slugging percentage (.567) and OPS (.962). Simply put, they just keep mashing.


2. Baltimore Orioles (73-45; LW 2)
After losing a series to the Astros, Baltimore responded by taking two out of three against the streaking Mariners despite scoring just eight total runs in three games. Look no further than its dominant bullpen for why. The Orioles have recorded 87 holds this season, by far the most in the majors, while also posting 479 strikeouts (third-most in the majors).

3. Los Angeles Dodgers (71-46; LW 5)
The Dodgers went unbeaten over the past week and have won eight straight overall. It’s the longest active win streak in the majors. One more win would give them their fourth win streak of nine games or more since 2021, which would be the most in baseball over that span. 

4. Texas Rangers (70-48 LW 3)
After going just 11-13 in July, the Rangers have been on fire the past two weeks. Even with the extra-innings loss to the San Francisco Giants on Sunday, the Rangers are 11-2 this month. Their pitching has been the catalyst of late, compiling an MLB-best 2.17 ERA in August. That goes along with an offense scoring 5.25 runs per game — eighth in the majors — during this stretch.

5. Houston Astros (68-51; LW 4)
The biggest story for the Astros is the return of Yordan Álvarez to their lineup. They’re hitting .306 with runners in scoring position since his July 26th return, which is third in the majors. During his six-week absence, Houston hit just .255 with runners in scoring position. That figure ranked 22nd.

Kyle Tucker blasts three-run HR as Astros extend lead over Angels

Kyle Tucker blasts three-run HR as Astros extend lead over Angels

6. Toronto Blue Jays  (66-54; LW 6)
The Blue Jays dropped four of five before routing the Cubs on Sunday. Their schedule doesn’t get any easier moving forward. Toronto will play nine consecutive games against teams with a winning record, six of them on the road. The good news? Its 3.24 team ERA since the break is best in the bigs.

7. Chicago Cubs (61-57; LW 7)
After surging from sellers to buyers, the Cubs are firmly in the playoff hunt and their offense has been the main reason why. Since the break, they’ve scored five or more runs 19 times, tied for the most in the majors. Chicago is 16-3 in those games and 3-7 when it scores less than five runs. Simply put, its offense is the X-factor for this playoff push.

Dansby Swanson slams 429-foot homer as Cubs take lead over Blue Jays

Dansby Swanson slams 429-foot homer as Cubs take lead over Blue Jays

8. Tampa Bay Rays (71-49; LW 8)
July was a struggle for Tampa Bay and August hasn’t started great, either. The Rays have begun the month 6-5 (and went 8-16 last month), with the offense continuing to be an issue. Their 4.03 runs per game since July began ranks 25th in the majors. Tampa’s 5.64 runs per game through June ranked second in baseball.

9. Philadelphia Phillies (65-54; LW 9)
Atlanta’s commanding lead in the NL East has probably overshadowed how good the Phillies have been the past two-plus months. Since June began, Philadelphia has the second-best record in the majors at 40-24 (behind the Braves’ 42-19). The Phils have also posted an MLB-best 20-10 mark on the road over this time.

10. Seattle Mariners (63-54; LW unranked)
Two nail-biter losses aside this weekend, Seattle has been incredibly hot of late. Its 16-6 mark since July 20th is tied with the Dodgers for the best in the majors. One key to the Mariners’ turnaround is winning on the road. They’ve gone 8-2 away from home after the All-Star break. They were 21-24 outside of T-Mobile Park in the first half of the season.

Julio Rodríguez blasts Mariners’ third home run of inning versus Toronto

Julio Rodríguez blasts Mariners' third home run of inning versus Toronto

Out: San Francisco Giants (10)

Ben Verlander is an MLB Analyst for FOX Sports and the host of the “Flippin’ Bats” podcast. Born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, Verlander was an All-American at Old Dominion University before he joined his brother, Justin, in Detroit as a 14th-round pick of the Tigers in 2013. He spent five years in the Tigers organization. Follow him on Twitter @BenVerlander.

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