By Mike Harrington
(Final season rankings. Last week in parenthesis)
1. Washington Nationals. Shut down Strasburg and then let Teddy win Presidents Race? Bad karma. (1)
2. Cincinnati Reds. Chapman finished with 122 Ks, 23 walks in 72 innings. (2)
3. New York Yankees. Starting pitching must hold up in October. (6)
4. San Francisco Giants. Posey for MVP and Comeback Player of the Year. (4)
5. Oakland Athletics. Too bad they already made the movie. Sequel? (8)
6. Atlanta Braves. Chipper’s farewell tour was great fun. (5)
7. Texas Rangers. Stunning collapse in AL West race. (3)
8. Baltimore Orioles. A season that revived a lost-its-way franchise. (7)
9. Tampa Bay Rays. Got 90 wins, needed healthy Longoria. (9)
10. Los Angeles Angels. Who decided Trout would spend first 20 in minors? Fired. (10)
11. Detroit Tigers. All hail King Miggy’s proud wearing of the Triple Crown. (11)
12. St Louis Cardinals. Kozma came through in place of Furcal. (12)
13. Los Angeles Dodgers. Start majoring in chemistry this winter. (15)
14. Chicago White Sox. Offense crumbled at crunch time. (13)
15. Milwaukee Brewers. Simply started run too late. (14)
16. Philadelphia Phillies. Ryno officially becomes manager-in-waiting. (16)
17. Arizona Diamondbacks. Finished 81-81. Blah all around. (17)
18. Pittsburgh Pirates. Going 16 over .500 in August and finishing below .500 is an ugly MLB first. (18)
19. San Diego Padres. Headley an unlikely RBI champion. (19)
20. Seattle Mariners. Hitters’ excuses end as Safeco Field’s fences will be coming in. (20)
21. New York Mets. Dickey’s 20th provided season’s feel-good finish. (21)
22. Toronto Blue Jays. Classy farewell for future HOFer Vizquel. (24)
23. Kansas City Royals. MLB’s longest postseason drought reaches 27 years, since ’85 World Series title. (22)
24. Boston Red Sox. Ultimate run-for-the-bus by finishing season with eight straight Ls. (23)
25. Miami Marlins. New ballpark, same dysfunctional organization with Ozzie thrown in. (25)
26. Cleveland Indians. Francona getting the nod to help rebuild. (27)
27. Minnesota Twins. Promoting Rochester skipper Glynn to big-league staff. (26)
28. Colorado Rockies. Stink. Never recovered from loss of Tulo. (28)
29. Chicago Cubs. Stank. Theo warns Wrigleyville more of the same coming while he builds. (29)
30. Houston Astros. Stunk. Lost 106 last year, 107 this year. Happy losing in AL West next year. (30)