Even though we are not sure when the MLB season will take place, it would still be nice to know exactly who belongs in top-10 power rankings for the 2020 season. There’s plenty of excitement in Los Angeles, Minnesota, and New York, but who could sneak into the top-10? Without further delay let’s take a look at the best teams in baseball heading into the new season.
Los Angeles Dodgers
LA added another bat with World Series experience in Mookie Betts. The outfielder brings a strong combination of power, contact, and speed to a lineup that already includes Cody Bellinger, Max Muncy, and Corey Seager. The Dodgers also have a rotation with former recipients of the Cy Young Award in Clayton Kershaw and David Price. Walker Buehler is a young arm who needs to improve on past struggles, but overall the Dodgers have a great chance to be a victor in the Fall Classic this MLB year.
The Nats have pretty much the same team they had when they won the World Series last season, minus third baseman Anthony Rendon. Washington has plenty of depth and versatility on its roster, so they should find a way to give their big names some time off when required. The defending champs also brought back Stephen Strasburg, who will once again form a stellar 1-2 punch with Max Scherzer.
Tampa Bay Rays
The Rays have arguably the best pitching staff in baseball and should be a good team in 2020. Tampa has a rotation that includes Blake Snell, Charlie Morton, and Tyler Glasnow. Even though the Rays traded Emilio Pagan to San Diego, they still have a solid pen led by Diego Castillo. The Rays’ lineup also got better this offseason with the acquisitions of Hunter Renfroe, Manuel Margot, and Yoshitomo Tsutsugo.
New York Yankees
The Bronx Bombers signed Gerrit Cole to a mega-deal and at least for this season, the Yanks should have a productive rotation which also includes Masahiro Tanaka, James Paxton, and J.A. Happ. The Yankees’ lineup should have a healthy Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, Gary Sanchez, and Miguel Andujar. Gleyber Torres is one of the best shortstops as well. New York isn’t ranked higher than Tampa, simply because they’ve dealt with so many injuries and I like the Rays’ rotation better.
The Twins were aggressive this offseason as they brought in Kenta Maeda, Homer Bailey, Josh Donaldson, and Alex Avila. Minnie already had a nice young core centered around Jorge Polanco, Max Kepler, and ace Jose Berrios. The Twins should win the AL Central again this year, but they make a lot of noise in the playoffs if they pitch effectively. With New York losing Luis Severino before the season even began and Houston dealing with the cheating scandal and rotation questions, maybe this could be the year the Twins take that next step.
Oakland can hit with the best of them and as long as they get more production from their starting rotation it should be a better MLB season than 2019. Marcus Semien, Matt Chapman, and Matt Olson each hit more than 30 home runs a season ago and the pop doesn’t stop there. Khris Davis and Mark Canha each launched more than 20 homers last year and helped give the A’s one of the more respected lineups in MLB. Even the rotation isn’t great, Oakland still has a really good pen and I expect it to carry the pitching staff in ’20.
St. Louis Cardinals
The RedBirds have a rotation that includes veterans like Adam Wainwright and Carlos Martinez, but Jack Flaherty should be the ace of the MLB staff. Miles Mikolas and Dakota Hudson are not to be trifled with either. St. Louis also has a lineup full of young talent who should take the next step this season and it doesn’t hurt they have Paul Goldschmidt.
The Braves don’t have a scary rotation, but their bullpen has some of the better arms in the game today. Atlanta signed left-hander Will Smith in the offseason to go alongside Mark Melancon, Shane Greene, and Darren O’Day. Freddie Freeman, Ronald Acuna, Jr, and Marcell Ozuna bring a lot of firepower to the Braves’ batting order each day.
The Phitin’ Phils need to avoid another late-season collapse and therefore, they’ll need more reliable starting pitchers this MLB season. Aaron Nola and newcomer Zack Wheeler should be able to play at a high level, but there’s some concern with Jake Arrieta, Vince Velasquez, and Zach Eflin. Philly also needs health to be on their side, especially when it comes to their bullpen. Bryce Harper, J.T. Realmuto, Andrew McCutchen, and Rhys Hoskins should provide plenty of excitement during Joe Girardi‘s first season as Philly’s manager.
The Brew Crew can hit the long ball, but their pitching staff needs to improve. Christian Yelich, Lorenzo Cain, and Ryan Braun can smash the baseball, and Milwaukee also has some good complementary players in Keston Hiura and Justin Smoak. The rotation includes Brandon Woodruff, Adrian Houser, and Eric Lauer. There are still questions as to whether or not closer Josh Hader will get traded at all this year, but until he does I expect him to perform at an All-Star level this season. Who makes your top-10 list heading into the new MLB season? Leave a comment below. Blast the next pitch out of the park with IroniqMedia for all of your MLB coverage. Follow Fiuza on Twitter @MakinItBig1