The 2020 MLB season has been full of surprises so far.
The 2020 MLB season might almost be half-over, but we’ve still seen a good amount of plucky upstarts make a run at the playoffs and expected favorites wilt away as they struggle to keep their head above water. With the season nearing its midway point, it’s time to take stock of the contenders and pretenders in the MLB.
It’s time to rank the best teams in the 2020 MLB season at the near-halfway point.
Pittsburgh Pirates 4-16, 5th in NL Central
Pirates fans don’t have a ton to cheer about in Derek Shelton’s first season as manager. Pittsburgh has won just two of its last 15 games, and the only regular starter hitting above .197 is third baseman Philip Evans, who is currently on the IL. While Shelton might be in control of the league’s worst offense and an average (at best) pitching staff, he can comfort himself knowing he has an inside track to Vanderbilt pitcher Kumar Rocker in the 2021 draft.
Boston Red Sox 7-18, 5th in AL East
The Red Sox’s lineup is still capable of doing some damage, but their league-worst pitching staff that consists of a bunch of players who should be in Triple-A right now is an embarrassment. Martin Perez has a 4.07 ERA through five starts, and he has been their best starter by a mile. Even though the likes of Andrew Benintendi and Rafael Devers are struggling, Boston won’t go anywhere this year with a shambolic pitching staff like the one it has at the moment.
Seattle Mariners 8-18, 5th in AL West
The Mariners knew that 2020 was going to be a very long season, and they have met those low expectations with a very slow start. The one silver lining is that some of the younger players that have been given more playing time have excelled. While Kyle Lewis has been extremely productive so far, both he and the rest of Seattle are looking forward to 2021.
Los Angeles Angels 8-17, 4th in AL West
Poor Mike Trout. Even after the Angels splurged on Anthony Rendon in free agency and hired Joe Maddon, Shohei Ohtani once again being limited to hitting has left the Angels with a threadbare pitching staff. MLB was almost trying to get Trout into the playoffs by expanding it from 10 teams to 16, but the Angels seemed destined for another October at home on the couch.
Detroit Tigers 9-14, 4th in AL Central
The Tigers started off the season white-hot at 9-5, but all of their pixie dust has run out, as a nine-game losing streak has once again relegated them to lower part of the AL Central. Knowing they missed their shot at the postseason, the Tigers could use 2020 as a chance to see how far along some of their top prospects, including stud right-hander Casey Mize, have come along. Mize should make the rest of 2020 a touch more bearable for Detroit fans.
Kansas City Royals 10-15, 5th in AL Central
Mike Matheny knew he had a long rebuild ahead of him when he took the Royals managerial job, and the lack of depth has proven to be a problem for Kansas City. Even though Whit Merrifield and Jorge Soler are performing well, Hunter Dozier and Adalberto Mondesi have been extremely disappointing. The one silver lining for Royals fans is that the starting rotation and bullpen, led by a young Brady Singer and a resurgent Trevor Rosenthal, have performed pretty well.