Updated: April 14, 2014, 11:48 AM ET

Dodgers take over top spot


Having won five of their past six games, the Los Angeles Dodgers climbed six spots to move into the No. 1 position in our Power Rankings. The Milwaukee Brewers, winners of nine straight, moved up 15 spots to No. 2.

The Detroit Tigers, last week's No. 1 team, fell two spots to No. 3, while the Tampa Bay Rays and St. Louis Cardinals both dropped two spots to come in at No. 4 and No. 5, respectively.

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. Most of the team comments come courtesy of the bloggers on the SweetSpot Blog Network. How do you rank all 30 teams? Go ahead and rank them yourself.

Tell us what you think about the Power Rankings. Use the hashtag #ESPNMLBPOWER.

After a series sweep at Chase Field, L.A. is now 5-0 against Arizona and 4-4 against any other team. They get three more games versus the D-backs this coming weekend. Most pleasant surprise so far: 2-0, 2.04 ERA of Dan Haren or .405/.439/.541 of Dee Gordon? -- Diane Firstman (@dianagram), Value Over Replacement Grit
The Brewers ran their winning streak to nine by finishing off a sweep of the Pirates on Sunday. They have the best run differential in the game, due in large part to the fact they lead the majors in ERA. They've already faced three playoff teams from 2013 and will welcome another starting Monday when the Cardinals visit Miller Park. -- Ryan Topp (@RDTopp), Disciples of Uecker
Detroit lost three of five on its California road trip, with Miguel Cabrera continuing to struggle and the bullpen showing some question marks. Justin Verlander got his first two career hits against San Diego. A 10-game homestand is always a welcomed sight. -- Ryan Callery, Walkoff Woodward
The Rays won the series in Cincinnati, but suffered another injury in the rotation. With Jeremy Hellickson on the shelf until June and Matt Moore out indefinitely, Alex Cobb suffered an oblique strain that's expected to keep him out until mid-May at the earliest. Cesar Ramos and Erik Bedard will get the first shots to fill the empty spots, but prospect Nate Karns may not be far behind. -- Tommy Rancel (@TRancel), The Process Report
The Cardinals went 4-2 on their season-opening homestand behind new stars Michael Wacha, Matt Adams and Kolten Wong, even as closer Trevor Rosenthal works out the kinks. -- Matt Philip, Fungoes
In their past 29 games vs. the Braves, dating back to late 2012, the Nats are an embarrassing 7-22. On the other hand, in the same time frame they are 52-28 vs. the rest of the NL East. They don't play the Braves again until late June, plenty of time to build a cushion. -- Harper Gordek (@harpergordek), Nationals Baseball
The Braves' starting pitching is still the best in baseball, and now the offense is showing signs of fulfilling their potential. Justin Upton and Freddie Freeman were two of the hottest hitters in baseball last week. Sweeping the Nationals was a great way to close out the first homestand of the season. Now the starting staff will be tested by a good hitters' park in Philly. -- Martin Gandy, Gondeee
Oakland's pitching excellence has been taken for granted for a decade, but without Jarrod Parker and A.J. Griffin, they weren't supposed to be this good: the A's are second in baseball in runs allowed per game, behind only Milwaukee. -- Jason Wojciechowski, Beaneball
Leadoff man Angel Pagan has been a huge contributor to the Giants' league-high mark of .306 with runners in scoring position. He has been the catalyst to a revitalized lineup, leading the team with seven multihit games and a .404 batting average. He'll be imperative if the Giants are to contend among the best teams in the National League. -- Connor Grossman (@GiantsBaseball), West Coast Bias
They scored just five runs in getting swept by the Brewers. The Travis Ishikawa First-Base Scrap Heap Platoon Idea isn't working, as he and Gaby Sanchez have combined to hit .175 with three RBIs so far. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot
Since their opening three-game sweep of the Angels, the Mariners are hitting .190/.246/.293. Brad Miller and Mike Zunino have combined for one walk and 29 strikeouts. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot
The Yankees took three out of four from the Red Sox this past weekend, which is huge around these parts even in April. They got good pitching from Michael Pineda, Ivan Nova and Hiroki Kuroda, timely hitting from Brian McCann, whose bat finally woke up, and the bullpen stepped up for the injured David Robertson. Unfortunately, there are a few more injuries to contend with. -- Stacey Gotsulias (@StaceGots), It's About the Money
Red Sox
Can we believe in Grady Sizemore now? A .994 OPS after two weeks is something you can dream on, but reality likes to remind us the rest of the Red Sox aren't doing so hot: Boston's 17th in MLB with 44 runs scored due to an awful .190 batting average with RISP. Hopefully, the coming rebound will make them look more like the 2013 machine and less like the 2012 clunker. -- Brett Cowett (@BACowett), Fire Brand of the AL
One of the major issues identified last year was that the starting rotation had trouble getting past the sixth inning and was exhausting the bullpen. This year? Just re-read those articles. -- Jon Shepherd (@CamdenDepot), Camden Depot
Michael Bourn is currently on a rehab assignment and is likely close to returning to the Tribe's lineup. However, Nyjer Morgan, the man who was supposed to be his temporary replacement, has put the team in an interesting predicament. He's hit .348/.484/.348 with three steals, and along with fellow outfielder David Murphy, has been one of the hottest hitters on the team. -- Stephanie Liscio (@stephanielisci), It's Pronounced "Lajaway"
The starting rotation will get a boost with the return of Colby Lewis on Monday, but the offense has been mostly nonexistent. Prince Fielder should soon begin a hot streak, as a BABIP of .171 is well below his career average. -- Brandon Land (@one_strike_away), One Strike Away
The Rockies are personifying mediocrity: they have alternated wins and losses over the past eight contests and have yet to crack .500. The rotation remains unstable. Tyler Chatwood returned from the DL, but Brett Anderson might be taking his place. The bats and bullpen look good, though -- they will both be needed, as the Rockies' next day off is April 24. -- Eric Garcia McKinley (@garcia_mckinley), Rockies Zingers
The Angels' left-field platoon of Collin Cowgill and J.B. Shuck appears to be settling in nicely in the absence of Josh Hamilton, triple-slashing .381/.409/.667 over its first five games. In the long term, Shuck's bat and Cowgill's defense should successfully bridge the gap until Hamilton returns. -- Hudson Belinsky, Halos Daily
Blue Jays
Mark Buehrle (3-0, 0.86 ERA) has stabilized an uncertain starting rotation, while the Blue Jays' vaunted offense finally broke out, scoring 11 runs vs. Baltimore on Sunday. -- Callum Hughson, Mop-Up Duty
The Royals have scored the fewest runs in the majors, which isn't exactly surprising considering they've hit one home run. But they've struck out the fewest times! -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot
White Sox
The Sox lost Avisail Garcia for the season last week, a blow that robs them of both excitement and any real chance of decent corner OF production. But the offense can always say they were kings of the first two weeks, even if their 4-3 walk-off win Sunday led by AL batting-leader Alexei Ramirez knocked them off a 1,000-run pace. -- James Fegan (@TheCatbird_Seat), The Catbird Seat
Juan Lagares has an eight-game hitting streak, batting .312 over that span, and has at least one hit in 11 of the 12 games he's played; he's batting .319 overall with a .353 OBP and leads the Mets with seven RBIs. -- Joe Janish (@metstoday), Mets Today
Miami got outscored 37-18 during its 0-6 road trip. Even Jose Fernandez got roughed up, as his streak of 13 consecutive starts of allowing two runs or fewer was snapped. Giancarlo Stanton's average homer "true distance" so far (as per ESPN Home Run Tracker): 442.5 feet. -- Diane Firstman (@dianagram), Value Over Replacement Grit
The Reds are tied for last in the NL Central, but don't blame lefty Tony Cingrani. Cingrani hasn't allowed more than five hits in any of his 21 career starts. That's the longest streak in a century. -- Chad Dotson (@dotsonc), Redleg Nation
After a punchless spring training, Chase Utley is off to a ferocious start, hitting .500 with 35 total bases in just 10 games. Utley anchors a lineup that's been solid thus far while the Phils wait for the rotation to get healthy and some of the young-ish bullpen arms to emerge as viable big leaguers. -- Eric Longenhagen, Crashburn Alley
Chase Headley, Will Venable and Jedd Gyorko are all hitting under .200 and have combined for two home runs and just eight extra-base hits. They did take two of three from the Tigers, however, including knocking out Max Scherzer after five innings on Sunday. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot
The Twins' week started off dreadfully, with a lopsided sweep against the A's in their home-opening series, but they followed that up by sweeping the Royals over the weekend to return to .500. Minnesota's offense continues to be a pleasant surprise, tied for second in the AL in runs scored. -- Nick Nelson, Twins Daily
Lost two 1-0 games in Texas this past weekend, which makes seven games with two or fewer runs scored already this season. MLB-worst .189 team batting average and .262 OBP. Astros starting pitchers this season (13 games): 76 IP, only five homers allowed, 1.158 WHIP. -- Diane Firstman (@dianagram), Value Over Replacement Grit
With a pair of series defeats this past week, the Cubs run their streak to nine straight series without notching a series win. The streak dates back to early September 2013. -- Joe Aiello (@VFTB), View from the Bleachers
Struggles on the pitching side have given the D-backs the worst record in MLB, but the still-sputtering offense started showing signs of life in the past week, including Paul Goldschmidt's seventh career home run off of Tim Lincecum (more than 10 percent of his career HRs). Next step: evaluating Josh Collmenter as a starter. -- Ryan P. Morrison (@InsidetheZona), Inside the 'Zona

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