THT Dartboard: Week Sixby Matthew Carruth
May 18, 2009
Welcome to The Hardball Times Dartboard, our weekly attempt to rank all the teams in baseball. The Dartboard Factor is how many wins a team would be expected to have at the end of the season if it played a neutral schedule. Next to that, you'll find the Dartboard Factor from the previous week. An explanation of our method can be found here.
#1 Los Angeles Dodgers (Dartboard Factor = 105, 106): Juan Pierre steps in for Manny Ramirez and surprisingly puts up a .407/.467/.593 line. Rafael Furcal gets some time on the bench going forward after a brutal .367 OPS on the week.
#2 Toronto Blue Jays (Dartboard Factor = 100, 99): Four more walks and four more doubles for Marco Scutaro while the rotation continues to roll.
#3 Milwaukee Brewers (Dartboard Factor = 95, 89): Big week from Mike DiFelice in the pen, punching out five hitters and walking none. Rickie Weeks, Prince Fielder (three home runs each) and Mike Cameron (five walks) all generate offense for the Brews this week.
#4 New York Mets (Dartboard Factor = 95, 95): A good comeback week from J.J. Putz with six strikeouts and zero unintentional walks. Ten doubles combined between Carlos Beltran, David Wright and Gary Sheffield who all post OPSs over 1.000 for the week.
#5 Texas Rangers (Dartboard Factor = 94, 87): Big week for the Rangers as Josh Hamilton comes back and parks three home runs, matched by Hank Blalock and Chris Davis on the week. Two walk off wins against Seattle help pad their lead.
#6 Chicago Cubs (Dartboard Factor = 91, 86): Another week, another interesting line from Carlos Marmol allowing just one run over four innings while striking out five, but he also walked five. Kosuke Fukudome has another big week keeping alive the hopes that this year he'll sustain the production all year.
#7 Kansas City Royals (Dartboard Factor = 91, 97): Gil Meche and Luke Hochevar get completely trashed, but Zack Greinke and Kyle Davies help keep the Royals from falling totally off the table as the offense aside from Mike Jacobs was silent.
#8 Cincinnati Reds (Dartboard Factor = 89, 81): Eight home runs allowed in 39.2 innings by the starting rotation this week and a boosted weeks from Laynce Nix, Jerry Hairston Jr and Joey Votto.
#9 Los Angeles Angels (Dartboard Factor = 88, 83): John Lackey comes back, throws a pitch behind Ian Kinsler, throws a pitch in his ribs and gets tossed. Well done, John. Besides that ugly incident, Torii Hunter continues to rake, but the rest of the offense is still dormant.
#10 St Louis Cardinals (Dartboard Factor = 88, 96): Not a terrific week for the Cardinals as the rotation falls apart and the offense fails to make any noise outside of the unusual .111/.429/.111 line from Joe Thurston.
#11 Detroit Tigers (Dartboard Factor = 85, 85): Justin Verlander has regained his old form with another 13 strikeouts in 6.1 innings. And Edwin Jackson still isn't returning to his old form.
#12 Atlanta Braves (Dartboard Factor = 84, 77): No power this week for the Atlanta offense with just two home runs and no triples. Plenty of doubles though, led by Yunel Escobar's four and good turns from the rotation propel the Braves upward.
#13 Tampa Bay Rays (Dartboard Factor = 83, 88): Something seriously appears wrong with Scott Kazmir who allows two long balls and four walks in just over three innings.
#14 New York Yankees (Dartboard Factor = 82, 81): Alex Rodriguez is drawing walks and hitting home runs, but is missing the singles to get his batting average back to where it will end up. Mark Teixeira is finally getting those hits with a .417/.464/.792 line on the week.
#15 Boston Red Sox (Dartboard Factor = 81, 85): David Ortiz finally reaches the end of the Terry Francona's patience and loyalty and gets a weekend benching. The rotation is still nowhere near the level that it should be at.
#16 Pittsburgh Pirates (Dartboard Factor = 79, 78): The Pirates' rotation combines for 24 strikeouts, four walks, four home runs over 35 innings, a very impressive run, but Pittsburgh doesn't capitalize.
#17 Cleveland Indians (Dartboard Factor = 78, 78): Cliff Lee might be back to his 2008 form, but his poor record could be preventing people from noticing. Seven innings with nine strikeouts and one walk in his start this week.
#18 Minnesota Twins (Dartboard Factor = 78, 74): Justin Morneau and Joe Mauer yet again on the week. Seven home runs and 13 walks between the pair and both posted wOBAs over .500.
#19 Colorado Rockies (Dartboard Factor = 77, 79): Huston Street and Manny Corpas heat up in the Colorado pen. Weird line for Ian Stewart this week with only four hits, but all for extra bases and six strikeouts to no walks leading to an unusual .222/.222/.778 triple slash.
#20 Houston Astros (Dartboard Factor = 75, 69): 11 strikeouts over seven innings for Wandy Rodriguez and big weeks for Hunter Pence, Ivan Rodriguez and Carlos Lee move Houston up away from the bottom cellar.
#21 Florida Marlins (Dartboard Factor = 73, 76): .409/.500/.591 for Hanley Ramirez on the week but the rotation gets completely trashed allowing 25 runs over 29.1 innings while Dan Meyer punches out eight guys over just 3.2 innings.
#22 Philadelphia Phillies (Dartboard Factor = 73, 74): Five walks, four home runs and a .481 batting average continues to just mash the ball in Philly and Carlos Ruiz adds eight walks drawn leading to a 1.250 OPS.
#23 Oakland Athletics (Dartboard Factor = 69, 69): The bullpen is still performing at an outstanding clip, but for the rest of the team? Horrible week all around with Jack Cust launching the lone home run for the team and only 11 extra base hits were hit in total.
#24 San Francisco Giants (Dartboard Factor = 69, 72): You wouldn't see it from the ERA, but the Giants rotation had a pretty good week striking out 42 and walking just 11 and giving up just four home runs over 40 innings. 32 runs came across though. Such is the perils of ERA.
#25 Arizona Diamondbacks (Dartboard Factor = 68, 72): Few bright spots for Arizona this week, Chris Snyder's six walks and Justin Upton's six extra base hits being about the only ones.
#26 San Diego Padres (Dartboard Factor = 68, 75): Brian Giles finally gets a good week in with a .300/.417/.550 line and Adrian Gonzalez goes bananas with six home runs and four walks drawn.
#27 Seattle Mariners (Dartboard Factor = 68, 70): The slide continues for the Mariners as they fail to muster any sort of consistent offense aside from Russell Branyan who is doing his best to prove that he deserved a full time shot years ago.
#28 Washington Nationals (Dartboard Factor = 67, 70): Ryan Zimmerman's hitting streak is over, but it was still a fabulous week for him at the plate going .483/.545/.862. Another horrible week for Daniel Cabrera walking ten and yielding 15 runs in 9.2 innings.
#29 Baltimore Orioles (Dartboard Factor = 67, 61): Losing Adam Jones to a hamstring injury isn't going to help Baltimore much while the rotation is still struggling and will miss the defense he provides in center field.
#30 Chicago White Sox (Dartboard Factor = 66, 70): Bad week for the White Sox rotation with 28 runs allowed over 28 innings and they were legit with 13 walks and five home runs allowed. The bullpen was solid though.
The playoff picture takes the above ranking and reforms the teams back into their leagues and divisions including the wild card. This is in no ways a prediction, this is an assessment of how teams have played so far this season, not how each team is going to play.
Blue Jays - 100
Rays - 83
Yankees - 82
Red Sox - 81
Orioles - 67
Royals - 91
Tigers - 85
Indians - 78
Twins - 78
White Sox - 66
Rangers - 94
Angels - 88
Athletics - 69
Mariners - 68
Mets - 95
Braves - 84
Marlins - 73
Phillies - 73
Nationals - 67
Brewers - 95
Cubs - 91
Reds - 89
Cardinals - 88
Pirates - 79
Astros - 75
Dodgers - 105
Rockies - 77
Giants - 69
Diamondbacks - 68
Padres - 68
Matthew Carruth is an editor for The Hardball Times. He welcomes any and all sorts of communication at his email.