OBFBL Power Rankings #4 (Through Week 16)

This is the fourth installment of the 2010 OBFBL Power Rankings.  As usual, I will rank each team in order of strength based on overall record, points scored, upward or downward streaks, and my own subjective criteria.  I will provide a quick breakdown and analysis and list each team’s previous ranking.

Onward and such!

#1 – Dawg Eat Dawg (18-6) – Previously #1

Nothing changes at the top as Benny maintains his year-long hold on the #1 spot.  He has gone 4-1 since the last rankings and continues to dominate the league with his solid pitching and consistent offense.  Roy Oswalt has pitched well all year, but didn’t get any wins on a putrid Houston team.  Now that he has been traded to the Phillies, look for him to accumulate W’s to add to his stellar numbers.  Lincecum and Greinke continue to produce, as well as Brett Myers and the resurgent Billy Wagner.  Despite not being able to shake Jason Tuvel off his tail in the division, Benny has already clinched a playoff berth.

#2 – C.C. Ate My Ketubah (18-6) – Previously #2

Fortunately for Ari Teplitz, he has clinched the NL Central and secured a playoff berth.  Unfortunately for Ari, his team has suffered another catastrophic injury as Kevin Youkilis has been lost for the season.  After Kendry Morales’ injury, Ari continued winning and never lost his threshhold on the division lead.  It will be interesting to see what happens now without Youkilis in his lineup.  Nyjer Morgan has also been lost to injury, and Jon Rauch’s value plummeted due to the Twins’ acquisition of Matt Capps as their closer.  Ari will be in the playoffs, but how far can he go with so many critical injuries?

#3 – Slappy McSingleton (15-9) – Previously #5

OBFBL rookie Matthew Abbott has been on fire since the last rankings going 5-0 and ascending to the top of the NL East.  Everything has been clicking on all cylinders for Matthew.  His recent additions of Wandy Rodriguez and Jeremy Hellickson paid immediate dividends.  Roy Halladay, Ricky Romero and James Shields have all been consistent and productive.  Despite losing Justin Morneau during the triple-header week, Brandon Phillips and Adam Dunn stepped up with some tremendous production.  While his lead is minimal over his two division rivals, Matthew has positioned himself to make the playoffs in his first year.

#4 – This is the Business We’ve Chosen (14-9-1-) – Previously #3

Jason Tuvel has been a thorn in the side of Benny Greenstein, refusing to go away in the AL West pennant race.   However, Jason has a comfortable 2 and 1/2 game lead in the AL Wild Card chase.  To his credit, Jason has overcome his reputation for fading in the second half by continuing to win by riding his impressive pitching trio of David Price, Jon Lester and Yovanni Gallardo.  Despite only going 2-2-1 since the last rankings, Jason is in position to make the playoffs.

#5 – Benny is Tiger Woods’ Bee-otch (14-10) – Previously #4

OBFBL original and former two-time champion Marc Stein has gone 3-2 since the last rankings and currently is the NL Wild Card leader.  The recent injury to rookie phenom Stephen Strasburg could be a blessing in disguise as it is now likely he will pitch into September due to the rest he had while on the DL.  Albert Pujols has been heating up, and to everyone’s surprise, Jose frickin’ Bautista has continued to dominate the league.  He put up an astounding 77 points during the recent double-header week, which is one of the top 3 scores of all-time for a position player who did NOT hit for a cycle.

#6 – There is No Giant Douche, Only Zool (13-11) – Previously #9

Commissioner Mike Stein dominated the triple-header week, but then got his ass handed to him again in a double-header massacre.  Mike is now 2-4 in double-header weeks, including getting swept four times.  Ryan Howard’s injury could be devastating as none of his reserve bats even deserve to be in the starting lineup to replace him.  Mike’s pitching staff, which is impressive on paper, has been very disappointing as King Felix has lost 3 in a row and John Lackey continues to be a disappointment.  Yet Mike is only 1 game out of the NL Wild Card race and 2 games out of the NL East division race.

#7 – Hoof Hearted (13-11) – Previously #6

Despite going 2-3 since the last rankings, Jared Levitt has grown a two-game lead in the NL West.  He can’t seem to get his entire team healthy at the same time as Josh Beckett’s return is slightly marred by the loss of Ian Kinsler again.  Adrian Beltre has been a revelation at 3B hitting like it is 2004 again.  Jared continues to take advantage of the slumps his division rivals are in.  If Chad Billingsley and Jonathan Sanchez can maintain their success, then he will have three viable pitchers to lead him to the playoffs.

#8 – Mets in 2010 (12-12) – Previously #16

Jordan Maliavsky is the league’s biggest jumper in the rankings as he vaults all the way to #8 after going 5-0 since the last rankings.  His acquisition of Tim Hudson bolsters a pitching staff that already includes Cliff Lee and a red-hot Gavin Floyd.  Jordan has gotten clutch performances from Corey Hart and Delmon Young to help offset the lack of production from A-Rod.  Now that A-Rod hit his tainted 600th homerun, perhaps he will relax and regain his power stroke down the stretch.

#9 – Death Star Destroyers (12-12) – Previously #10

Abe Strasser has catapulted to take over the division lead based on the 2nd tie-breaker with Mario.  Abe has ridden the strength of his pitching all year as Sabathia, Santana, Lilly, Liriano, Pavano and Lowe have all been solid.  His makeshift lineup, which doesn’t look impressive on paper, has quietly been contributing consistent (if not unspectacular) points – enough to help him win games.  Abe still could us a bat to help bolster his lineup, and selling high on one of his pitchers could help him accomplish that. 

#10 – 5 Finger Baseball (12-12) – Previously #12

Mario’s up and down season is now back on the upward swing as he has gone 3-2 since the last rankings, thanks in large part to Matt Garza’s double-header week no-hitter.  Injuries have started to take its toll on Mario as he lost Magglio Ordonez to the DL, and Aramis Ramirez has been on and off the DL too.  Justin Verlander hasn’t been the consistent ace that he thought and A.J. Burnett has been a trainwreck.  Despite all this, Mario is still tied for 1st place and in position to make a run at the playoffs.

#11 – Full Metal Jacket (11-12-1) – Previously #7

Joey I. has struggled mightily since the last rankings going 1-4 yet still remains in 1st place due to his division rivals struggling as well and failing to capitalize.  It will interesting to see how Joey I.’s young players perform down the stretch.  To his credit, he has taken a chance relying on so many young players as vital pieces of his team, such as Matt Wieters, Drew Stubbs and Mike Stanton.  Josh Johnson continues to be awesome, but Joey I. needs his Matt’s to perform well too (Capps, Cain and Latos).

#12 – Jewish Mafia (11-13) – Previously #8

Randy Peltz’s Hebrew Hitmen have really struggled lately only going 1-4 since the last rankings.  Carlos Beltran’s return has not provided the spark that he expected.  Pitching stud Ubaldo Jimenez went through his first slump of the year during the crucial triple and double-headers, but he looks like he regained his dominance this week.  Hanley Ramirez continues to be underwhelming, but Matt Kemp looks like he may have broken out of an extended slump.  The talent is certainly there, but Randy’s team needs to get going and get going soon.

#13 – Jumpin’ Jesse Orosco (10-13-1) – Previously #13

It has been quite an interesting ride for OBFBL rookie Tim Catts over the last few weeks.  Tim set some OBFBL history during the triple-header week with an OBFBL record of 120 points for the entire period.  He also set an abysmal record for the least amount of points in a 7-day period with 60, which broke the previous record that had been in place since 2004.  Then, Tim blew out his division rivals in the recent double-header week scoring 300 points despite still having an inactive Dustin Pedroia in his lineup.  Tim is, if nothing else, unpredictable.

#14 – Len Tuckwilla’s Nuts Over My Chin (10-13-1) – Previously #15

Injuries and wrong decisions on when to start Dice-K have doomed Craig’s season.  In one week, Craig has lost Carlos Santana (not the singer) and Carlos Pena to the DL.  Just FYI, this is an OBFBL record for most Carlos’s injured in the same week on the same team.  Congratulations Craig.  Despite his struggles, Craig is only 2 and 1/2 games out of 1st place in his division, so he is still within striking distance.  For the 3rd time this season, he has left Dice-K’s 20+ points on the bench.  Does he really hate the Red Sox that much???

#15 – Sharks With Phrickin’ Laser Beams (9-15) – Previously #14

Jim Malloy’s Sharks have gone 1-4 since the last rankings yet he remains only 2 and 1/2 games out of his division race.  Phil Hughes seems back on track, and Trevor Cahill has been a revelation on his pitching staff.  Veterans Jimmy Rollins and Torii Hunter continue to be productive, and Miguel Tejada seems quite happy in his new home in San Diego.  Jim has been an historically streaky player, so he is close enough in the race to make a serious run if his team gets hot at the right time.

#16 – Cole Hamels’ Multi-Racial Children (9-15) – Previously #11

Jeff and Mike have gone 0-5 since the last rankings and are barely hanging on to their playoff hopes as they face elimination if they lose one more game.  Injuries have depleted Cole Hamels’ team as Chase Utley, Clay Buchholtz, Jacoby Ellsbury and David Freese were unavailable for the recent triple-header and double-header weeks.  The Uptons look like they may be breaking out of slumps, and Ellsbury is already back.  If they can stay in the race, Utley should be back as well which would give Cole Hamels’ a complete team for the first time in many weeks.

#17 – What is the Plural of Moose? (9-15) – Previously #17

Cory remains ranked at #17 after going 2-3 since the last rankings.  However, he finds himself mired in last place in the AL Central trailing both the Death Star Destroyers and 5 Finger Baseball by three games.   Cory lacks a hitter with much power, so he must rely on a compilation of hits, runs and RBI to accumulate points offensively.  Dan Haren hasn’t done anything since he was traded to the Angels and the loss of Jake Peavy didn’t help matters.  It could be a struggle down the stretch if Cory continues to rely on Livan Hernandez, Bud Norris and Justin Masterson.

#18 – Veal Cutlet a L’Orange (4-20) – Previously #18

It hasn’t gotten any better for Maury who has gone 1-4 since the last rankings and was the first team in the league to be mathematically eliminated from playoff contention.  Despite finally getting Brian Roberts back, Maury lost Jason Bay to injury (which may not actually hurt him).  To his credit, Maury continues to make moves to improve his team and compete despite not having a chance anymore.  Maury is asking himself if things would have been different had he been more patient with Zack Greinke and Wandy Rodriguez.  The answer is probably not.

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