MLB Team Power Rankings Update: The Washington Nationals Can Cruise Toward October
If you're looking at the on-paper results, the Washington Nationals have had a pretty easy year.
While they're not close to the Los Angeles Dodgers, manager Dusty Baker has watched his club post a 79-51 record, the second-best mark in the National League. And despite the Miami Marlins making a late push, Washington still owns a 13-game lead in the National League East. Our metrics currently give them a 100% chance of reaching October -- just one of three teams with those odds at the moment -- and their 10.8% odds of winning the World Series is the fifth-best in baseball.
But it really hasn't been that easy.
We knew how bad the bullpen was before the front office brought in reinforcements via trades, but the Nats have also suffered through quite a bit of injuries. Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg have both spent time on the disabled list, and before Jayson Werth returned on Monday, Washington's entire starting outfield on Opening Day was hurt (including Bryce Harper and Adam Eaton). Oh, and let's not forget that Trea Turner has missed a significant chunk of the year with a wrist injury.
So, it hasn't been all sunshine and rainbows this year for the Nats, but they've been so good that they can use September to get everyone healthy and in a groove before things ramp up again in October.
Who else has seen their stock rise or fall since we last checked in around the league?
Unlike some other power rankings around the interwebs, ours here at numberFire aren't influenced by hype or the latest narratives. We put faith into our algorithms and use nERD to see which team is the best, which is a metric that represents runs scored above or below a league-average team per game.
Our rankings will include each team's nERD, their current record and playoff odds, along with how much their spot has changed over the past two weeks.