1. Chicago White Sox (1)- Might have lost Frank Thomas for the season. Still, they win, and that is all that matters. El Duque or Contreras could be dealt today.
2. St. Louis Cardinals (2)- One of the best all-around teams in baseball. Need some outfield help, and will get some, even if it is at the last minute. Is Albert Pujols a machine?
3. Atlanta Braves (4)- The youth revolution has done nothing to derail their shot at another postseason birth. After sweeping the Nationals this past week, look who is in the driver’s seat in the National League East.
4. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (3)- They continue to be Yankee killers, and that is a good thing with the playoffs two months away. The offense is struggling, and what is happening to Vlad? Paul Byrd looked good on Saturday.
5. New York Yankees (5)- Jason Giambi continues to do it for the Yanks, homering in the eighth inning on Saturday to move them within two. With the termoil going on in Boston, look for the Yankees to take over first place this week.
6. Boston Red Sox (6)- It really stinks when you have maybe the best right-handed hitter in the last 30 years, and he doesn’t even play for you. While Manny tries to get home to New York, the Red Sox are falling apart. Signing Jose Cruz Jr is a start.
7. Oakland Athletics (11)- The Oakland Athletics continue to be one of the hottest teams in baseball. As the Angels look for offense, the A’s have moved withing 2 ½ games of the first place team, but must deal with a hurting Mark Kotsay.
8. Washington Nationals (7)- The Nationals are falling fast, being compared to the Baltimore Orioles in the American League. They have lost six in a row, and 23-31 is not a good road record. Could these be the Expos of old?
9. Minnesota Twins (8)- Well, it is time to say goodbye to Bret Boone. Jacque Jones has been great offensively, but the outfield took a hit when Torii Hunter went on the disabled list. How about inserting Scott Baker in there every fifth day?
10. Houston Astros (15)- Roger Clemens continues to baffle people at his age, although his back has the Astros nervous. Morgan Ensberg may be the best young third baseman in the National League, and Andy Pettitte has an ERA under 1.00 in July.
11. Chicago Cubs (17)- There may be a Nomar Garciaparra sighting for the last two months of the season. If the Cubbies get him back, that is one heck of a lineup.
12. San Diego Padres (9)- Finally said goodbye to Phil Nevin this week, sending the former slugger to Texas. Have lost eight in a row, but look on the bright side, here come Chan Ho Park.
13. Baltimore Orioles (10)- Once considered the front runner for the American League East, the arms have gone dead. Sammy Sosa passed Frank Robinson on the home run list this past week, but nobody seemed to notice.
14. Cleveland Indians (12)- Watching their Wild Card hopes slip away after this current 2-11 slide. Aaron Boone had a couple of nice games this past week, but is still hitting .228.
15. New York Mets (16)- The three-team deal for Manny Ramirez looks to be dead, but the Mets are still in the playoff hunt. Pedro Martinez is turning into a legitimate Cy Young candidate in his first season in Flushing.
16. Philadelphia Phillies (13)- Calling Jim Thome, where are you? There is still no word on when he is coming back, but Phillies fans don’t seem to mind now that Ryan Howard is tearing the cover off the ball.
17. Florida Marlins (18)- Still haven’t dealt A.J. Burnett, and people are wondering if he is going anywhere at all. Jeff Conine made a spectacular play on Saturday, and Miguel Cabrera is an incredible hitter.
18. Toronto Blue Jays (19)- Fall a spot this week due to the injury to Ted Lilly. Still, our brothers to the north are making the AL East very interesting.
19. Texas Rangers (14)- They traded Park, and Rogers is out. Who is going to pitch for Texas? Soriano could be gone by Monday.
20. Detroit Tigers (22)- Finally have their original lineup intact, but are still 17 ½ games out. Mags is hitting .315 since his return.
21. Arizona Diamondbacks (20)- Shawn Green will move from right field to center for the second place team in the NL West. With SD in a freefall, look for Arizona to take over first place this week.
22. Milwaukee Brewers (21)- There is soon to be a Rick Helling sighting in Milwaukee. Sure they are 15 games out, but things are moving upward in the franchise.
23. Los Angeles Dodgers (23)- I guess they are still in it in the NL West, even though they are nine games under .500. Jeff Kent is batting over .300.
24. Seattle Mariners (24)- I don’t know how trading Randy Winn helps your team, but at least it wasn’t Ichiro. They are dead in the water anyway.
25. Pittsburgh Pirates (25)- When is it not a youth movement in Pittsburgh? Am I the only one who misses Willie Stargell?
26. San Francisco Giants (26)- Have still yet to swing a deal to send Jason Schmidt packing. Picking up Winn was nice, but when does Bonds come back.
27. Cincinnati Reds (27)- You would think Adam Dunn was Babe Ruth with what the Reds want for him. Dealt Joe Randa, and didn’t think twice.
28. Kansas City Royals (28)- Well their season is over. The Chiefs just opened up camp.
29. Colorado Rockies (29)- There really must be something in that Colorado air. Chacon looked like Koufax for the Yankees, happy to escape from that hitters haven.
30. Tampa Bay Devil Rays (30)- Could have picked up some gems in the Mets-Rays-Sox deal. Now they just have to wait til next year, or the year after, or the year after......
Email Brad Weiss @ TwinCitiesDugout@aol.com