2022 MLB Power Rankings: Week 16

Which teams glided into the 2nd half, and which ones tripped?

Every week, the PL team publishes an update to our power rankings, reviewing the biggest risers and fallers of the past seven days. As always, you can skip to the full rankings at the bottom of this article…but where’s the fun in that?

We’re back with another week of MLB team power rankings after our All-Star hiatus! We hope you enjoyed the epic Home Run Derby and mic’d up Alek Manoah as much as we did.

The past week was make or break for several teams’ seasons (looking at you, Angels) and an opportunity for other teams to separate themselves even further from the field going into the second half (see the top five in this week’s rankings — they should look familiar). With only four days to go before the August 2nd trade deadline, we know exactly who the buyers and sellers will be.

The trade that sent Andrew Benintendi to New York is the first big domino to fall (no, Mets fans, we’re not counting Daniel Vogelbach, even though this hustle play was awesome). The Benintendi acquisition is part of the reason the Yanks hold onto the top spot in the rankings — expect upcoming moves to impact next week’s edition.

Until then, here are the standouts from the teams that hit the ground running out of the break and the teams that… Did not.


On the Rise


The Toronto Blue Jays

Record: 55-44

Rank Change: +4 (10 to 6)

Opponents Since Last Ranking: Red Sox (3 games), Cardinals (2 games), Tigers (1 game)

After a cold stretch from July 2 through July 10 in which the Jays lost nine of ten games, they turned things around before the All-Star break by winning five of their next six.

They’ve continued their hot streak on this side of the break by winning another five games, including a 28-5 demolition of the Red Sox. They are the leaders in virtually every offensive category since July 12.

The usual suspects are producing in July, as they have all season. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. holds a 182 wRC+, Alejandro Kirk is hitting .333 and slugging .500, and Teoscar Hernández has pitched in four home runs. What’s different now is Toronto is also getting offense from players who had not been producing in the first half.

Raimel Tapia holds the team’s best offensive line since July 12, posting an astronomical 1.348 OPS and 283 wRC+. Matt Chapman found his stroke and is hitting  .372 with 5 home runs in that time, including a two-dinger night yesterday.

In addition to all the offensive fireworks, their pitching has been excellent as well. In the same time frame (since July 12), they hold the third-lowest team ERA in the league (2.79) and the best xFIP (3.04).

Vlad Jr. said at the beginning of 2022 Spring Training that 2021 was the trailer and 2022 will be the movie. We’ll grab some popcorn and see if the Jays have a big finale in store for us.


In a Slide


The Boston Red Sox

Record: 50-50

Rank Change: -4 (9 to 13)

Opponents Since Last Ranking: Blue Jays (3 games), Guardians (4 games)

The Red Sox lost four of their first six games following the All-Star break and have now lost 17 of their last 25. In that 25-game stretch, their pitching staff holds a league-worst 6.53 ERA and batting average against (.292). You don’t have to dig very deep to figure out where things are going wrong for the Sox.

Given the competitiveness in the AL East (see above) and the fact that Boston has inherited the unenviable cellar dweller label from the Orioles, they may begin looking toward next season. The freak injury to Chris Sale in the game he returned from an extended IL stint seems like a sign that this is not their year, and they should begin rebuilding their pitching staff for future campaigns.



Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)

Colin Fong

Colin lived near Cooperstown and collected signatures from Hall of Famers for his Dad's collection every summer as a kid. He thought it was super boring at the time, but thinks it's incredibly cool now. He's an A's fan and loves writing about the beautiful, absurd, infuriating, and inspiring world of baseball.

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