Don’t despair. It’s April. And we know why each team should be wholly optimistic.
The rankings (records through Wednesday’s games):
1. Chicago Cubs (5-3; Previous: 1): Games to be played under same rules as last year, other than that goofy intentional walk thing.
2. Boston Red Sox (4-4; Previous: 2): Pablo Sandoval will be comeback player of the year, possibly 2017.
3. Cleveland Indians (4-4; Previous: 3): Edwin Encarnacion still advertising free parrot rides.
4. Los Angeles Dodgers (5-4; Previous: 4): Not every pitcher out there is left-handed. Though they might be willing to try.
5. Washington Nationals (5-4; Previous: 5): They work weekends. Not everybody in town does.
7. San Francisco Giants (4-6; Previous: 6): Ninth inning has been cleared of suspicious packages. Some nights.
8. Houston Astros (6-4; Previous: 8): Games against Rangers still count as only one loss each.
9. Detroit Tigers (6-2; Previous: 11): One of these years the Tigers have to luck into a decent bullpen, right? Right?
10. Baltimore Orioles (5-2; Previous: 14): Buck will pitch Zach Britton every stinkin’ day through October. Happy?
12. Texas Rangers (3-5; Previous: 10): Mike Napoli still open to any and all parties, should it come to that.
13. Tampa Bay Rays (5-4; Previous: 16): In battle of Florida, Rays appease themselves with knowledge it’s just their ballpark that’s crooked.
14. Colorado Rockies (6-4; Previous: 18): Laws of gravity do not apply to standings. Usually.
15. Pittsburgh Pirates (3-5; Previous: 15): Andrew McCutchen only one behind team leaders in home runs.
17. Seattle Mariners (2-8; Previous: 13): Nothing that three or four more trades can’t fix.
18. Los Angeles Angels (6-3; Previous: 21): If they stretch it out, Angels could have Mike Trout trophy presentation every night.
19. Arizona Diamondbacks (7-3; Previous: 27): All they have to do is hold on for another 5½ months.
20. New York Yankees (4-4; Previous: 17): Aroldis Chapman getting plenty of rest.
21. Kansas City Royals (2-6; Previous: 19): Were actually afraid that window was painted open.
22. Miami Marlins (4-4; Previous: 20): Jeffrey Loria cannot sell to Loria. Can he?
23. Cincinnati Reds (7-2; Previous: 29): They see that white flag waving in Chicago. Oh wait, has a W on it.
24. Oakland Athletics (5-4; Previous: 25): When the tarps came off they found three old draft picks they’d totally forgotten about.
25. Philadelphia Phillies (3-6; Previous: 23): It’s cool – Phanatic’s ATV has NoJack.
26. Minnesota Twins (5-3; Previous: 28): They’ve already won more games than they did last year.
27. Chicago White Sox (3-4; Previous: 26): Ah well, nobody in town’s really noticing.
28. San Diego Padres (5-5; Previous: 24): Sorry, what was the question again?
29. Milwaukee Brewers (4-5; Previous: 24): From Dodgers, Ryan Braun could bring young pitching, young position players, maybe a cool evening breeze.
30. Atlanta Braves (2-6; Previous: 22): Traffic is going to be way less of a problem than anybody thought.
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