Monday, April 8, 2013

Reds fall in ESPN power rankings, Nationals stay at top spot?

Washington topped the rankings despite losing series in Cincinnati
There are many things in this world that just don't make a lot of sense. But ESPN's latest batch of MLB Power Rankings may now be the most nonsensical of them all.

On Sunday, the Reds defeated the Nationals, 6-3, to effectively take two out of three from the reigning National League East Division champions. Cincinnati's only loss of the three-game set came Saturday when it took the Nats 11 innings to squeak out a 7-5 win. This coming a day after the Reds absolutely hammered Washington, 15-0, behind a barrage of six home runs.

Despite the outcome, the Nats hung on to the top spot in the rankings, while the Reds slid one spot to number four. Wait, what?

Now to be fair, at the end of the first week, both teams boasted identical records at 4-2. However, that is extremely deceiving, because it fails to consider who each team played.

Washington opened the season at home against the lowly Miami Marlins, and subsequently swept them in three games. Meanwhile, the Reds opened up at home against the Los Angeles Angeles, a team who many experts believe will be playing well into October.

For what it's worth, and apparently it's not worth much, here is how the group ranked the other NL Central teams...

#14 Cardinals (3-3)
#24 Brewers (1-5)
#25 Pirates (1-5)
#27 Cubs (2-4)

It should be noted that all five division clubs experienced decreases in the rankings, but having the Nationals over the Reds is the most egregious by far.

And yes, I realize these type of things are done just for fun, and are completely subjective.

So, who the heck was behind such a dubious poll? This week's voters were Jim Bowden of ESPN Insider, Tim Kurkjian of ESPN The Magazine, David Schoenfield of the SweetSpot Blog Network/ESPN.com and Jayson Stark of ESPN.com.

Please send them your warm regards.

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