Sport: MLB Power Rankings: Yankees Fall Out of No. 1 Spot

Making Sense of Some Puzzling Trade Deadline Decisions

  Making Sense of Some Puzzling Trade Deadline Decisions There were four different strategies that contending teams used at the trade deadline: 1) Make the necessary moves to improve for the rest of the regular season, with the hope being to secure one of the six playoff spots in each league and/or to ensure home-field advantage. 2) Build the optimal 1) Make the necessary moves to improve for the rest of the regular season, with the hope being to secure one of the six playoff spots in each league and/or to ensure home-field advantage.

Here’s where all 30 teams stand as we near the trade deadline.

In this week’s power rankings, we’ll be focusing on five teams arriving at the trade deadline in different stages of their contention timelines. They consequently all seem to be employing distinct strategies that could affect their outlook for years to come. Let’s not waste any more time, as a trade could break any second (it’s been far too quiet over the last week).

30. Washington Nationals (LW: 30)

29. Kansas City Royals (LW: 26)

28. Pittsburgh Pirates (LW: 24)

Oakland’s Sean Murphy is one of the best catchers in the game, and unlike Willson Contreras of the Cubs, Murphy is under club control for three more seasons after this one. Robert Edwards/USA TODAY Sports © Provided by Sports Illustrated Oakland’s Sean Murphy is one of the best catchers in the game, and unlike Willson Contreras of the Cubs, Murphy is under club control for three more seasons after this one. Robert Edwards/USA TODAY Sports

27. Oakland A’s (LW: 29)

The A’s turned in their best week of the season to polish off their best month of the year, sweeping the Astros at home for what was both Oakland’s first sweep and the first time Houston was swept in 2022. Another win against the White Sox secured the A’s their first winning month (14–12), in which they hit 36 homers in 26 July games after hitting just 54 in their first 78.

Report: Yankees 'shopping' two-time All-Star OF Joey Gallo

  Report: Yankees 'shopping' two-time All-Star OF Joey Gallo With the Wednesday night acquisition of 2022 All-Star outfielder Andrew Benintendi, Joey Gallo's days with the New York Yankees could be numbered. The 28-year-old is enduring arguably his worst MLB season thus far and fans in the Bronx have grown frustrated with the power-hitting, strikeout-prone left-handed batter. © Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports New York Yankees are having issues finding a suitor for right fielder Joey Gallo (13). According to Jon Heyman of the MLB Network and New York Post, the Yankees may be looking to move Gallo ahead of Tuesday's trade deadline, but are having issues finding a suitor.

Of course, much of the discourse surrounding the A’s has long since shifted from their collective results on the field to the performances of certain individuals who could be dealt ahead of Tuesday’s trade deadline. This teardown is just beginning, as Oakland is not a particularly young team—none of the seven A’s with most plate appearances nor the seven with the most innings pitched are younger than age 27.

Other than the highly sought after starting pitcher Frankie Montas, the club’s most valuable trade chip appears to be catcher Sean Murphy, who’s under team control through 2025. He’s been the A’s most valuable player by fWAR (2.7) and the third-most valuable catcher in the American League by the same metric. Murphy, who’s big for a catcher at 6’3” and 228 pounds, was especially good at the plate in July, slashing .299/.376/.529 with 12 extra-base hits in 24 games. Former first-round pick Shea Langeliers, acquired from Atlanta in the Matt Olson trade, has been tearing up Triple A this year and could soon be ready to replace Murphy, though GM David Forst shouldn’t feel forced to ship his starting backstop out of town.

Luis Severino placed on 60-day IL after Yankees acquire Frankie Montas

  Luis Severino placed on 60-day IL after Yankees acquire Frankie Montas Severino, who is battling a right lat strain, is now ineligible to return until mid-September. Prior to tonight’s game, the Yankees made the following roster moves:•Transferred RHP Miguel Castro & RHP Luis Severino to the 60-day IL•Optioned RHP Clarke Schmidt to Triple-A SWB•Signed RHP Carlos Espinal to a Major League contract & selected him to the active roster — New York Yankees (@Yankees) August 1, 2022 The trade for Montas combined with the surprise transfer of Severino to the 60-day IL might indicate a possible issue with Severino’s health.

One name I’m surprised hasn’t popped up more in the rumor mill is Cole Irvin, whose 1.73 ERA in 10 starts at Oakland’s cavernous Coliseum is the lowest home mark of any AL starting pitcher. The lefthander is under team control through 2026 and has a lower ERA than Montas, albeit with a far lower strikeout rate. But he’s averaging a tad more than six innings per start and is probably at his peak value. The flyball artist could fit well on a contender in a pitching-friendly park.

VERDUCCI: Everything You Need to Know Before the MLB Trade Deadline

26. Detroit Tigers (LW: 27)

25. Cincinnati Reds (LW: 28)

24. Chicago Cubs (LW: 25)

23. Los Angeles Angels (LW: 23)

The Rockies continue to be one of the most baffling teams around the trade deadline each year, with their latest confounding decision being to extend closer Daniel Bard instead of trade him. Still, there’s something admirable in not punting, right? Isaiah J. Downing/USA TODAY Sports © Provided by Sports Illustrated The Rockies continue to be one of the most baffling teams around the trade deadline each year, with their latest confounding decision being to extend closer Daniel Bard instead of trade him. Still, there’s something admirable in not punting, right? Isaiah J. Downing/USA TODAY Sports

22. Colorado Rockies (LW: 21)

Colorado’s decision on Saturday to sign 37-year-old closer Daniel Bard to a two-year extension reportedly worth $19 million raised some eyebrows among the media. You can understand the logic, as a team with slim playoff odds such as the Rockies could be better served by trading Bard—who has the 13th-best park-adjusted ERA among MLB relievers with at least 30 innings pitched—especially in a thin market for relievers.

Benintendi’s Arrival Likely Spells End for Gallo in New York

  Benintendi’s Arrival Likely Spells End for Gallo in New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone all but admitted the Yankees’ trade for All-Star outfielder Andrew Benintendi will push Joey Gallo out the door. View the original article to see embedded media. Welcome to The Opener, where every weekday morning during the regular season you’ll get a fresh, topical story to start your day from one of SI.com’s MLB writers.

But I don’t mind it. The 2020 National League Comeback Player of the Year is content to stay in Colorado, which isn’t always the case for pitchers. The Rockies have been burned many times before by committing to free agent hurlers who couldn’t adjust to pitching in the high altitude of Denver, and Bard has already proven he can. That matters for a team clearly trying to contend over the next couple of seasons following the signing of Kris Bryant in March.

Speaking of Bryant, he got hot in July after returning from the injured list in late June, slashing .341/.411/.612 for a 171 wRC+ that ranked eighth in MLB. The former NL MVP still has just five home runs in 42 games, though.

So who might the Rockies trade? They have long operated to the beat of their own drum at the deadline, with the most recent examples being keeping Trevor Story and Jon Gray last year despite their looming forays into free agency. If they acted like most franchises do, All-Star C.J. Cron would probably be dangled in front of teams hungry for a right-handed power bat. But they’ve also indicated they’d like to keep the slugger in Denver longterm, so the most valuable Rockies player dealt may be setup man Alex Colomé. Time will tell if their conservative approach will work in the long run.

Report: Blue Jays, Yankees, and Cardinals frontrunners for A's SP Frankie Montas

  Report: Blue Jays, Yankees, and Cardinals frontrunners for A's SP Frankie Montas The rumor mill is heating up as the MLB trade deadline approaches. © Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports Oakland Athletics starting pitcher Frankie Montas. One of the names expected to be on the move ahead of Tuesday's 6 p.m. deadline is Oakland Athletics' ace starting pitcher Frankie Montas.According to MLB Network's Jon Morosi, the market for Montas is beginning to take shape. While there should be plenty of interest from around the league in the 29-year-old starter, the Toronto Blue Jays, New York Yankees, and St. Louis Cardinals have emerged as the favorites to land Montas, per Morosi.

21. Arizona Diamondbacks (LW: 22)

20. Miami Marlins (LW: 19)

19. Texas Rangers (LW: 20)

18. Boston Red Sox (LW: 16)

Orioles catcher Adley Rutschman has lived up to his top-prospect hype since his promotion to the big leagues in late May. He’s hitting .241/.336/.424 with 2.0 bWAR in 55 games, and is one of the key reasons why the future is looking brighter in Baltimore. Joe Nicholson/USA TODAY Sports © Provided by Sports Illustrated Orioles catcher Adley Rutschman has lived up to his top-prospect hype since his promotion to the big leagues in late May. He’s hitting .241/.336/.424 with 2.0 bWAR in 55 games, and is one of the key reasons why the future is looking brighter in Baltimore. Joe Nicholson/USA TODAY Sports

17. Baltimore Orioles (LW: 17)

The Orioles may be in the trickiest trade deadline position of any team. A summer surge has pushed them to a .500 record and within three games of a wild-card spot. But the club’s expectations weren’t that high entering the season following a 110-loss campaign in 2021. While the bullpen has a legitimate claim to being the best of its kind, the lineup doesn’t contain the sort of hitter who strikes fear into opposing pitchers and the patchwork rotation suggests Baltimore won’t be able to hang around in the playoff race down to the wire. It would take more than a starter or two to turn that unit into a postseason-worthy group, and should require a more comprehensive makeover in the offseason.

That doesn’t mean the Orioles shouldn’t be buyers before the deadline to give their players and fans some hope, though. They just went 16–9 in July, their best record in a month since going 15–8 in April 2017. Catcher Adley Rutschman’s promotion to the majors earlier this season has helped usher in a new era for the O’s, with the former No. 1 pick already accumulating 2.0 bWAR in 55 games, a near 6.0-bWAR pace over a full season, indicating All-Star-level play.

Yankees vs. Mariners odds, prediction, line: 2022 MLB picks, Monday, August 8th best bets from proven model

  Yankees vs. Mariners odds, prediction, line: 2022 MLB picks, Monday, August 8th best bets from proven model SportsLine simulated New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners featuring Aaron Judge, Andrew Benintendi and Ty France 10,000 timesOct 4, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Washington Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer (31) throws in relief in the 8th inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in game two of the 2019 NLDS playoff baseball series at Dodger Stadium.

Last week, I made the case that the O’s should employ a double-pronged approach by selling high on a reliever or two while bringing in young hitters and starters who could help this season and/or beyond (second base in particular could stand an upgrade over Rougned Odor). It still seems like a solid strategy to me after Baltimore took three of four from the division-rival Rays before losing two of three to the Reds on the road last week.

LAWS: Five ‘Angel or Devil’ Trade Deadline Conversations

16. Chicago White Sox (LW: 18)

15. San Francisco Giants (LW: 14)

14. Cleveland Guardians (LW: 15)

13. Tampa Bay Rays (LW: 11)

12. St. Louis Cardinals (LW: 9)

Despite his .206 batting average, Kyle Schwarber has been among the most productive Phillies hitters this season, thanks to his 33 home runs. Philadelphia has won five-straight games before the deadline. Charles LeClaire/USA TODAY Sports © Provided by Sports Illustrated Despite his .206 batting average, Kyle Schwarber has been among the most productive Phillies hitters this season, thanks to his 33 home runs. Philadelphia has won five-straight games before the deadline. Charles LeClaire/USA TODAY Sports

11. Philadelphia Phillies (LW: 13)

The Phillies have won five in a row after triumphing in a confidence-boosting series against Atlanta at Citizens Bank Park before earning their first four-game road sweep of the Pirates since 1968, putting them in playoff position entering August. They were in that spot at the same time last year, though, and actually led the NL East at this point before fading over the season’s final two months to miss the playoffs for the 10th straight season—the NL’s longest active drought.

Philadelphia’s 2021 deadline deal with Texas for Kyle Gibson and Ian Kennedy didn’t work out so well, but don’t think that’ll discourage president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski from taking a big swing this year to provide reinforcements for the bullpen, defense and perhaps even the back end of the rotation.

Judge hits 43rd HR, Yanks beat Ms 7-2 for winning home mark

  Judge hits 43rd HR, Yanks beat Ms 7-2 for winning home mark NEW YORK (AP) — Aaron Judge hit his major league-leading 43rd home run, Jose Trevino had his first multihomer game and the New York Yankees beat the Seattle Mariners 7-2 Monday night in a series opener between teams bulking up for the postseason. Anthony Rizzo started the onslaught with a three-run homer in the first, and New York clinched its 31st consecutive winning record at home (41-13), second only to its big league standard of 47 in row from 1918-64. The Yankees are 70-34, the first team to reach 70 wins this year.

A pair of previously struggling sluggers in Alec Bohm and J.T. Realmuto both finished July with OPS marks above 1.000, with each ranking in the top eight of qualified MLB hitters. Kyle Schwarber has launched an NL-leading 33 homers, and his 10 bombs in July trailed only New York’s Aaron Judge and Atlanta’s Austin Riley. But he’s batted under .200 in three out of four months thus far and is barely above the Mendoza line on the season. Also, the most frequent middle infield combination of Didi Gregorius and Bryson Stott hasn’t been up to snuff. The pair have combined for 0.0 bWAR, or exactly replacement level. Jean Segura’s expected return from a broken finger in August should help interim manager Rob Thomson better sort out the plate appearances in that area. On Saturday, the Phillies traded for former Cardinals shortstop Edmundo Sosa, who has really struggled at the plate this season but is a slick defender and phenom on the bases. Last year, Sosa emerged for St. Louis in the second half, and was the team’s starting shortstop in the wild card game after out-playing former All-Star Paul DeJong down the stretch. Regular plate appearances in Philadelphia could help Sosa return to where he was then, a slightly above league average hitter worth 3.2 WAR over 113 games in 2021.

The Phillies still have a lot of potential areas for improvement, but their starpower in the rotation and lineup is often enough to carry it to victory, even with Bryce Harper expected to be sidelined until September. It’ll be Dombrowski’s job over the next two days to bolster their depth so they aren’t overly reliant on a collection of notoriously streaky sluggers in Harper’s absence.

BACCELLIERI: The Biggest Deadline Needs for Every Playoff Contender

10. Minnesota Twins (LW: 8)

9. Seattle Mariners (LW: 12)

8. San Diego Padres (LW: 6)

7. Toronto Blue Jays (LW: 10)

6. Milwaukee Brewers (LW: 7)

5. Atlanta Braves (LW: 4)

4. New York Mets (LW: 5)

3. Houston Astros (LW: 3)

After hitting nine home runs in 11 games since the All-Star break, Aaron Judge has 42 homers this season and is on pace to finish with 66. Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports © Provided by Sports Illustrated After hitting nine home runs in 11 games since the All-Star break, Aaron Judge has 42 homers this season and is on pace to finish with 66. Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports

2. New York Yankees (LW: 1)

The Yankees are out of the No. 1 spot for the first time since late May after losing both games of a mini-Subway series last week en route to a rather pedestrian 13–13 record in July, their worst winning percentage in a month this season, despite outscoring every team in MLB by at least 20 runs. The Dodgers, meanwhile, went 21–5 in July to regain the power rankings crown.

Fantasy PPR Superflex Rankings 2022: Top 200

  Fantasy PPR Superflex Rankings 2022: Top 200 Fantasy PPR Superflex Rankings 2022: Top 200Crazy, right? Well, yeah, considering there were barely enough viable starting quarterbacks to go around in single-QB leagues back in the day. Now, with the NFL officially a “passing league,” there’s no shortage of high-quality QBs, which is making superflex and two-QB leagues not only popular, but also necessary to some degree.

The Yankees made the first major move of deadline season last week when they traded for Andrew Benintendi from the Royals, essentially marking the end of Joey Gallo’s Yankees tenure. But despite all the consternation about Gallo’s struggles, New York’s real issues stem from its pitching. Its 4.38 ERA in July ranked 21st. Jameson Taillon and Jordan Montgomery were the main culprits, both logging ERAs around 5.00, but Gerrit Cole also carried an ERA above 4.00 despite leading the AL in strikeouts last month. A once bulletproof bullpen has started to look vulnerable, especially after Michael King’s season-ending elbow injury. Clay Holmes and Aroldis Chapman combined to allow 14 runs over their 18 ⅓ innings in July (6.87 ERA). It is worth noting that Holmes’s seven runs came in two dreadful outings that happened nearly three weeks apart; he was fine—albeit with shakier command—in his eight other appearances.

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Those are some rather unsightly statistics for a team on pace to win 109 games. But that indicates just how good the Yankees had been before they hit this rut. Injuries to several key players is one of the reasons for this. In addition to King, Luis Severino has missed the last two weeks with a lat strain, but he is expected to resume throwing soon and could be back in the rotation later this month. Right-handed reliever Miguel Castro won’t be back until September. Giancarlo Stanton, who has been out since July 24 with Achilles tendonitis, could resume baseball activities early this week. He’s eligible to return from the IL on Wednesday, though New York probably won’t rush him back.

But these injuries are exactly why the Yankees need to act at the deadline, even if all they do is add solid depth pieces. They are fortunate enough to own a good enough farm system to have traded for Benintendi without sending away any of their consensus top-15 prospects. If they feel like they need to go after one (or more) of the premier pitchers available, they have the young talent and money to do it. It’d be a shame for Aaron Judge’s historic home run pace to go to waste. Your move, Brian Cashman.

1. Los Angeles Dodgers (LW: 2)

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