With the playoffs starting next week, and the Wild Card race wrapping up I decided to give my unofficial power rankings. I’m excluding the presumed division winners like the Giants and Braves. Without further ado here are my rankings of the presumed playoff teams in order of least likely to make a playoff run to most likely to make a playoff run:
They’re one loss away from elimination, sorry Oakland it’s not your year.
Although it’s unlikely to see the Mariners in the playoffs, I have to include them in my list because after all, they are only one game out of the second-place spot in the Wild Card standings (as I write this article the M’s are down 1-0 to the A’s in the bottom of the 6th). The Mariners are a team no one expected to see fighting for a playoff spot late in September, but here they are making one final push. Led by the favorite for Manager of the Year in Scott Servais, they have always kept their heads above water.
The M’s have some sneaky good players like Luis Torrens, Ty France, Dylan Moore, and Jarred Kelenic (I know he’s a top prospect, but we all expected him to have some growing pains). Seattle also has some reliable veterans like Kyle Seager, Mitch Haniger, and J.P. Crawford (I know he’s only 26 but it feels like he’s been in the majors forever.) The Mariners’ offense might not be the best in the league or even top 10 in efficiency, but they also seem to show up when needed. I like the Mariners offensively because guys like Mitch Haniger and Kyle Seager are hungry to make the playoffs. You can feel the energy in Seattle. Are they naive or is there something really there?
The pitching is the backbone of this team, unfortunately, their pitching isn’t so stellar. They are led by reliable pitchers Yusei Kikuchi, Marco Gonzalez, and breakout star Chris Flexen. And their bullpen has held up mainly because of Drew Steckenrider and veteran Paul Sewald.
The players and fans might be hungry for a playoff run, but it seems unlikely. And even if they did make the playoffs they wouldn’t get past the Yankees (or even the Red Sox). I love the energy in Seattle, but I think we all know that a deep playoff run isn’t in them, and this isn’t their year.
I struggled whether to put the Blue Jays or Cardinals ahead of the Red Sox, but I just don’t think Boston has a deep playoff run in them. Their pitching is so-so, and in the postseason even a great offense will disappear under the bright lights.
I know they have known cheater Alex Cora leading them, and a great offense, but their lack of pitching makes me think Boston won’t even be in the ALDS.
Like I said before they have a great offense, but the Yankees have great pitching (their most likely opponent in the Wild Card), and the Yankees have patient hitters. If they’re able to knock out Eovaldi in the 5th and get to the bullpen, it’s over. Who does Boston have that is reliable in a do or die game? Ottavino? He just pooped the bed against the Yankees last weekend. Matt Barnes? The Yankees have hit him before and they can do it again. Garrett Whitlock? Bright lights in New York City? Recipe for disaster.
Their offense is good enough, but like I’ve said their pitching won’t win them any games. Sorry Boston, it’s not your year. Actually, I’m not sorry, eff the Red Sox.
I really like the Cardinals, and they have a great narrative going for them. They’re the underdogs that never gave up, a team everyone can get behind. There’s just one problem, they have to face the 100+ win Dodgers in the Wild Card game. It’s baseball, anything can happen, but the Cardinals advancing past the Wild Card is very unlikely.
They won 17 games in a row, an impressive feat. But any team could get hot, they just got hot at a good time. They have veterans in Yadier Molina and Adam Wainwright and stars in Nolan Arenado and Paul Goldschmidt. But before the 17 game win streak, they were mediocre at best. Their starters aside from Adam Wainwright have been shaky, the offense meh, and the bullpen has been good at times. I just don’t see the Cardinals beating the mighty Dodgers, and even if they do they have to face a Giants team that has shocked the baseball world by winning 103+ games.
I would love to see Yadier get one more ring, same for Wainwright who is a top 5 Cy Young candidate, and for Nolan Arenado to get a ring, but the stars aren’t aligning for St. Louis this year.
If the season ended today the Blue Jays wouldn’t even be in the playoffs, so why are they ranked so high on my list? Number 1 because it’s my list, and number 2 because their offense is so freakin’ good.
They’re only one game out of the second Wild Card spot, and with 4 games left to go anything can happen. Their offense is so good they might carry an overall decent team to the playoffs. Led by superstar Vladimir Guerrero Jr. on offense, and Robbie Ray on the mound the Jays are a scary team. However, there is a good chance they don’t make the playoffs. But if they do, lookout.
As a Yankees fan, I’m pretty worried about the Blue Jays sneaking into the playoffs, and I’m rooting for the Mariners to sneak in, but all I want is for the Blue Jays to not make the playoffs honestly. I know the Yankees can beat the Red Sox and easily beat the Mariners, but the Blue Jays? I’m not too sure about that.
They have an explosive offense that boasts numbers nobody has ever seen before, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is an absolute menace at the plate and Bo Bichette is a natural hitter. The only reason they’re not in the second Wild Card spot is their pitching is not so great.
Robbie Ray will probably win the CY Young Award even though Gerrit Cole deserves it, Hyun Jin Ryu is always reliable, but after their first two pitchers in the rotation, it’s not such a pretty picture. Jose Berrios is always unpredictable, Steven Matz has been alright this year but can he be trusted in a do or die game? And the Blue Jays 5th starter is some 23-year-old kid the Bronx would eat alive.
Would Robbie Ray in a one-game playoff even be that good? Can he be trusted even though throughout his career he’s been a shaky starter at best? If I was Charlie Montoyo I would seriously consider not starting Ray if he had to start against the Yankees in the Bronx with 50,00+ fans screaming at him.
The Blue Jays pitching is the only thing holding them back from making a deep playoff run, and maybe inexperience, but if given the opportunity in the playoffs the Blue Jays could do something….
I’ve been writing about the Yankees since last April, and all year long it’s been a rollercoaster of emotions. One week they’re the best team in the league, the next they’re the worst. The Yankees have been an all-or-nothing team all year, except for the last two weeks. The last two weeks of the season for the Yankees have given me hope that they can compete in the World Series this year.
Games that they have lost all year, they’re winning. For example, last weekend in Boston the old Yankees would’ve been swept because they wouldn’t have capitalized late in the game, the new Yankees capitalized and swept Boston. The offense isn’t all about home runs anymore, and the pitching staff is the best in the AL.
I really do think that the Yankees can shock the baseball world and win the World Series. Obviously, I’m biased as a Yankees fan, but in a way, I’m not because I’ve watched this team all year. I’ve previously stated that the Yankees wouldn’t even make the playoffs and if they did it would end embarrassingly. But this new Yankees team has given me hope.
In a do or die game the Yankees will have Gerrit Cole on the mound, and Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton to lead them on offense. The players on the Yankees have been through tough losses in the playoffs, and are the most battle-tested team in the AL. The fans will do their part at home and even at away games to scare the living cr*p out of their opponents, and the Yankees will always have Mystique and Aura to back them up.
The Yankees have the best pitching staff in baseball and an offense that keeps on improving, this team is poised to show everyone up and win it all.
The Dodgers aren’t even a real team, they’re a superteam. They have an unbelievable offense and a dominant pitching staff. They will undoubtedly crush the Cardinals in the Wild Card Game and most likely steamroll the Giants and either the Brewers or Braves. But I still don’t believe in them 100%.
The Dodgers have had better teams in the past, like in 2019 when they didn’t even make it past the NLDS. Scherzer could very well suck in the playoffs along with Kershaw and along with Urias. I know Dodger fans don’t trust Kenley Jansen, and I’m not sure Dave Roberts does either. Cody Bellinger has been a shell of his former self all year long, Max Muncy is a streaky player, Turner is old, and Trea Turner was just okay in the Nationals World Series run 2 years ago. The Dodgers were the most disappointing team of the 2010s, I half expect them to be the most disappointing team of the 2020s as well.
The regular season is winding down, and the playoffs are right around the corner, how can you not love baseball?