MLB power rankings: Week 19

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BY TONY CONSIGLIO
​XN Sports

There is always plenty of hype leading up to the trading deadline every July 31. Rarely does it live up to the hype, with teams generally completing deals that hardly qualify as blockbusters.

This year, though, was a different story. Teams were bold, trading away stars and top prospects. It turned into one of the most exciting trade deadlines in years.

So, now, we no longer have to question whether teams are buying or selling for the stretch run. We now know how each team views itself heading down the stretch. And here is how we view the teams as they currently stand.

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MLB power rankings: Week 19

1. Oakland Athletics (67-43) (Last Week 1) – Billy Beane is getting his roster ready for October by stacking the starting rotation and adding Jon Lester. But will losing the bat of Yoenis Cespedes prove to be a problem? The early results are mixed. In the three games without him since the trade deadline, Oakland has scored zero, eight, and two runs.

(AP Photo/Ben Margot)

2. Los Angeles Angels (66-44) (LW 2) – If the Angels are able to overtake the Athletics to win the A.L. West and pick up home field advantage, that could make them tough to beat in October. At 38-19, the Angels have the best home record in baseball.

(AP Photo/Steve Nesius)

3. Los Angeles Dodgers (63-49) (LW 3) – Matt Kemp has thrived since trade rumors involving him had popped up. In his last seven games, he has went 9-for-21 with five home runs, four doubles, a triple, seven RBIs, and two steals.

(AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)

4. Baltimore Orioles (62-48) (LW 5) – The Orioles got some bullpen help prior to the deadline, but could have used a front-line starter, too. Baltimore’s starters do rank in the top half of the American League, but they lack a true ace. The O’s don’t have a starter with an ERA lower than 3.69.

(AP Photo/Gail Burton)

5. Detroit Tigers (61-47) (LW 7) – The Tigers are straight up hoarding Cy Young Award winners with their acquisition of David Price. But it also makes it more clear that Justin Verlander is the worst pitcher on the staff, with a 10-9 record, 4.66 ERA, and 0.7 WAR.

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

6. Milwaukee Brewers (61-51) (LW 4) – The Brewers’ outfield, which was already one of the better in the game, has gotten even better thanks to the addition of Gerardo Parra. He will be a reliable fourth outfielder, who brings with him two Gold Gloves and a decent bat.

(AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

7. Washington Nationals (60-49) (LW 8) – The Nats finished off their series with the Phillies by turning in 21 consecutive scoreless innings. Stephen Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann each had seven-inning performances and combined for 18 strikeouts.

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

8. San Francisco Giants (60-51) (LW 10) – Though they did acquire Jake Peavy in the days leading up to the trading deadline, the Giants didn’t get anything else done, and they really could have used a second baseman in particular. San Francisco second basemen are hitting a league-worst .175 this year.

(AP Photo/Kathy Kmonicek)

9. St. Louis Cardinals (59-51) (LW 6) – The Cardinals were already eighth in baseball in starting pitcher’s ERA, but that didn’t stop them from trying to upgrade the rotation by trading for John Lackey and Justin Masterson. And, so far so good as each won his St. Louis debut.

(AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

10. Toronto Blue Jays (60-53) (LW 11) – The Blue Jays were hot, winning nine of ten, mainly against division rivals. But they then followed that up with a three-game losing skid against the lowly Astros, and were outscored 17-4 in those games.

(AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

11. Pittsburgh Pirates (59-52) (LW 12) – During the last seven days, Josh Harrison slugged 1.129 thanks to five home runs, four doubles, and a triple. His OPS during that time was an incredible 1.629.

(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

12. Atlanta Braves (58-54) (LW 9) –Ervin Santana has been great since the All-Star Break. In four starts, he is 3-0, with a 1.18 ERA, and 28 strikeouts in 28 innings.

(Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)

13. Cleveland Indians (56-55) (LW 14) – Corey Kluber has had back-to-back nine-inning performances without allowing an earned run, and fell one out shy of a complete game in his previous start. He has turned in quality starts in seven of his last eight outings.

(AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

14. New York Yankees (57-53) (LW 13) –The Yankees were active ahead of the trade deadline, bringing in some bats to help the offense. But it’s hard to believe their pitching staff can match up with the likes of the A’s and Tigers if they are able to reach the playoffs.

(AP Photo/Winslow Townson)

15. Kansas City Royals (57-53) (LW 17) – Eric Hosmer could miss six weeks due to a fractured hand, which is a tough break for Kansas City. Hosmer had just enjoyed his best month of the year, hitting .366/.425/.535 in July.

(AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

16. Tampa Bay Rays (54-57) (LW 15) – Does trading David Price mean the Rays are throwing in the towel on the season just as they have been climbing in the Wild Card standings?

(Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)

17. Seattle Mariners (57-54) (LW 16) – The Mariners begin a nine-game homestand on Tuesday with series against the Braves, White Sox, and Blue Jays. While Seattle is three-games over .500 on the season, the M’s are just 26-31 at Safeco.

(Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images)

18. Cincinnati Reds (56-55) (LW 19) – The Reds have done very little offensively since the All-Star Break. Cincinnati has scored a MLB-worst 33 runs in 15 games.

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

19. Miami Marlins (54-57) (LW 18) – The Marlins are within striking distance of a Wild Card spot, sitting 5.5 games back, and they are being aggressive. They pulled in a starting pitching in Jarred Cosart as part of a six-player deal in an effort to help a starting rotation that ranks 12th in the National League.

(AP Photo/J Pat Carter)

20. Chicago White Sox (54-58) (LW 20) – Adam Eaton has been on a tear since the All-Star Break. In 64 at-bats, he’s hitting .469/.514/.563.

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

21. New York Mets (53-58) (LW 21) – The Mets made some history for the wrong reasons. For the third time in their history, opposing pitchers threw complete game two-hitters or better against them during the same series when Ryan Vogelsong and Madison Bumgarner did just that on Friday and Sunday, respectively.

AP Photo/Kathy Kmonicek)

22. San Diego Padres (51-60) (LW 23) – After trading away some of their better players, the Padres are playing some of their best baseball of the season. They won five of six against the Cardinals and Braves.

(AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)

24. Minnesota Twins (50-60) (LW 25) – The Twins’ bats came alive in their series against the White Sox. In the three-game set, Minnesota scored 32 runs, including 16 in the series finale.

(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

23. Boston Red Sox (49-62) (LW 22) – The Red Sox offense should be better for the rest of the year thanks to the additions of Yoenis Cespedes and Allen Craig, but wins could prove tough to come by since GM Ben Cherington blew up the pitching staff. The team, though, is in good position looking forward to 2015.

(AP Photo/Winslow Townson)

25. Arizona Diamondbacks (49-63) (LW 24) – The Diamondbacks have been an above-.500 team since the All-Star Break, but they’ve likely lost their best hitter for the season. Paul Goldschmidt is out for at least eight weeks with a hand fracture.

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

26. Chicago Cubs (47-63) (LW 28) – The Cubs are getting closer to becoming a contender as they continue to stockpile talent. After the trade of Jeff Samardzija netted them Addison Russell, they picked up catching prospect Victor Caratini for Emilio Bonifacio and James Russell.

AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)

27. Houston Astros (47-65) (LW 29) – The Astros are again sacrificing the present for the future, trading away two Major Leaguers in Jarred Cosart and Kike Hernandez. But they could win this deal in the long run, thanks to picking up highly-regarded third base prospect Colin Moran.

(AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

28. Philadelphia Phillies (49-63) (LW 26) – For a team going nowhere and with assets, to do nothing at the trade deadline is a huge disappointment. It’s hard to see this franchise turning things around anytime soon.

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

29. Colorado Rockies (44-67) (LW 27) – The Rockies now own the second-worst record in baseball thanks to their current skid. They have lost seven of eight games, scoring just 23 runs during that stretch.

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

30. Texas Rangers (43-68) (LW 30) – Pitching continues to let this team down. Over the last seven games, the Rangers allowed nine or more runs three times.

(AP Photo/Aaron Josefczyk)

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