As has been the case for the last nine weeks, the St. Louis Cardinals enter the All-Star break as the top-ranked team in the TSN.ca MLB Power Rankings.
The Cardinals, at 57-36, have the best record in baseball, with a plus-127 run differential that is also well ahead of the rest. Top it off by their roster being relatively healthy, and it's been relatively smooth sailing for St. Louis.
Their top two challengers, right now, are division rivals, the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds.
Making a big move up, the Baltimore Orioles jumped from 10th to fourth, in part because they had won four of their last five but, much more importantly, got lefthanded starter Wei-Yin Chen back from the disabled list.
The Los Angeles Dodgers also jumped, from 14th to fifth, on the strength of a furious finish to the first half, climbing back to .500 with a lineup led by shortstop Hanley Ramirez and rookie phenom right fielder Yasiel Puig.
Also rising, the Cleveland Indians were up from 18th to 14th after four straight wins and the Colorado Rockies from 20th to 16th, upon getting star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki back from injury.
Finally placing starting pitcher Clay Buchholz on the disabled list, the Boston Red Sox slipped from second to sixth. The Detroit Tigers and Oakland A's each dipped four spots to seventh and 10th, respectively.
The Toronto Blue Jays had risen as high as 14 in the rankings, after being ranked third in the preseason and sinking as low as 27th early in the year, but they go into the All-Star break ranked 18th, down two spots from last week.
Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook.