2016 Week 26 MLB Power Rankings

Cubs finish atop MLB Power Rankings (1:24)

The Baseball Tonight Crew breaks down the final MLB Power Rankings. (1:24)

Our final rankings of the season start the way they began, with our preseason No. 1, the Chicago Cubs. The Cubs spent 25 of 27 weeks (including our preseason rankings) at No. 1, and they enter the playoffs as the unanimous top team in baseball. Behind them at No. 2 are the Boston Red Sox, who opened the season at No. 8 in our preseason rankings. Boston dropped as low as No. 17 in the rankings in Week 3 but bounced back quickly and spent the next 23 weeks somewhere among the top 10.

The rest of the top five stayed the same heading into the playoffs, with the Texas Rangers (No. 3), Los Angeles Dodgers (No. 4) and Washington Nationals (No. 5).

At the other end of the rankings, the Minnesota Twins finished at No. 30, with an MLB-worst 103 losses. It was a disappointing season for a team that opened our preseason rankings at No. 21 after winning 83 games in 2015.

This week's voters are Jim Bowden of ESPN Insider, Eric Karabell of ESPN Fantasy, Tim Kurkjian of ESPN, David Schoenfield of the SweetSpot Blog Network/ESPN.com and Jayson Stark of ESPN.com. Most of the team comments come courtesy of the SweetSpot Blog Network.

Past rankings: Week 25 | Week 24 | Week 23 | Week 22 | Week 21 | Week 20 | Week 19 | Week 18 | Week 17 | Week 16 | Week 15 | Week 14 | Week 13 | Week 12 | Week 11 | Week 10 | Week 9 | Week 8 | Week 7 | Week 6 | Week 5 | Week 4 | Week 3 | Week 2 | Week 1 | Preseason

1. Chicago Cubs

Record: 103-58-1
Week 25 ranking: No. 1

The Cubs' 103 wins marks their highest total since 1910, when they posted 104. That season, they went to the World Series. Can they go a step further this year? -- Joe Aiello (@VFTB), View from the Bleachers

2. Boston Red Sox

Record: 93-69
Week 25 ranking: No. 2

With an impressive list of dignitaries in attendance Sunday, David Ortiz put the finishing touches on one of the best seasons ever by a 40-year-old player two days after yet another dramatic go-ahead home run. Ortiz led the majors this season with a .620 SLG and 1.021 OPS, and he has some baseball left to play against old friend Terry Francona and the Indians in the ALDS. -- Ryan P. Morrison (@ryanpmorrison), Inside the 'Zona

3. Texas Rangers

Record: 95-67
Week 25 ranking: No. 3

For the first time in franchise history, the Rangers finished with the American League's best record. As their reward, they will enjoy the benefits of home-field advantage in the postseason. -- Brandon Land (@onestrikeaway), One Strike Away

4. Los Angeles Dodgers

Record: 91-71
Week 25 ranking: No. 4

They weren't able to knock the rival Giants out of wild-card contention, and that final series exposed a big weakness: The Dodgers are the worst-hitting team in the majors against left-handed pitchers. Luckily, the Nationals are thin in the southpaw department, with only Gio Gonzalez in the rotation and some shaky lefties in the 'pen. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

5. Washington Nationals

Record: 95-67
Week 25 ranking: No. 5

Health update: Wilson Ramos is out, Daniel Murphy pinch hit in his first appearance since Sept. 20, Bryce Harper played over the weekend after missing four days, and Jayson Werth sat out Saturday and Sunday but says he's OK. The four days off before the division series will be much needed. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

6. Cleveland Indians

Record: 94-67
Week 25 ranking: No. 6

In the last week of the regular season, the baseball gods smiled on the Indians. They lost their final series to the Tigers but swept the Royals to gain home-field advantage in the ALDS and avoid a Monday trip to Detroit to make up a postponed rainout. Yan Gomes marked his return from the DL to the starting lineup with a two-run homer. -- Susan Petrone, It's Pronounced Lajaway

7. Baltimore Orioles

Record: 89-73
Week 25 ranking: No. 9

Despite a patchwork starting rotation and a power-heavy lineup that was good but didn't produce quite as well as expected, the Orioles earned the second AL wild-card spot. Their regular season was a roller-coaster ride until the very end, and it's fitting that they'll now head back to Toronto to face a division foe that failed to ruin the Orioles' playoff chances in the teams' previous matchup. -- Matt Kremnitzer (@mattkremnitzer), Camden Depot

8. Toronto Blue Jays

Record: 89-73
Week 25 ranking: No. 7

They slumped to the worst September record of any of the playoff teams, but Aaron Sanchez helped clinch a wild card with a no-hit flirtation Sunday and claimed the AL ERA title in the process (3.00). Edwin Encarnacion finished tied with David Ortiz for the AL RBI crown. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

9. New York Mets

Record: 87-75
Week 25 ranking: No. 10

The Mets have reached the postseason in consecutive years for the second time in team history (after 1999 and 2000). This offseason, Yoenis Cespedes, who finished with 31 homers and a .884 OPS, can opt out of his contract. The past two seasons, the Mets were 110-79 (.582) when Cespedes played and 67-68 (.496) when he did not. -- Joe Janish (@metstoday), MetsToday.com

10. San Francisco Giants

Record: 87-75
Week 25 ranking: No. 9

Despite a late-season swoon that left them with a 30-42 record after the All-Star break, the Giants got into the postseason by winning their last four games, continuing their string of success in even years. All mysticism aside, the Giants need to do a better job of scoring runs on Wednesday than they did in August and September if they want to advance against the Mets. -- Jeff Wiser (@OutfieldGrass24), Inside the 'Zona

11. Detroit Tigers

Record: 86-75
Week 25 ranking: No. 8

The Tigers' season ended with a whimper, as they were shut out by the last-place Braves. They went 29-27 in August, September and October, which isn't bad, but they never got hot enough to leapfrog the other teams into the playoffs. One could even say the Tigers got a bit lucky, with a 26-17 record in one-run games. -- Richard Bergstrom (@rbergstromjr), Rockies Zingers

12. St. Louis Cardinals

Record: 86-76
Week 25 ranking: No. 12

The Cardinals won their final four games but missed the playoffs by one win, and it's the first time since 2010 that they won't be in the postseason. They led the NL with 224 home runs, with Jedd Gyorko leading the team with 30 (though he had just 59 RBIs, in an odd stat line). -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

13. Seattle Mariners

Record: 86-76
Week 25 ranking: No. 13

It came down to the wire, but Seattle didn't get the help it needed to reach the postseason, and that ensured the team's 39-year drought without a World Series appearance will remain intact. The core of the team will be in place again in 2017, though a declining Felix Hernandez remains a concern. -- Jeff Wiser (@OutfieldGrass24), Inside the 'Zona

14. New York Yankees

Record: 84-78
Week 25 ranking: No. 15

Yet again, the Yankees finished just enough above .500 to fool themselves and their fans into thinking they might have a shot at a championship. With win totals of 84, 88, 84 and 85 for the past four seasons, they've been nothing if not consistent, but the big difference this year was a new-for-the-Yankees rebuild that restocked a now-impressive farm system and yielded hope of more than slightly above-par mediocrity in the future -- maybe in 2018. -- Scott A. Moss, It's About the Money

15. Houston Astros

Record: 84-78
Week 25 ranking: No. 14

With 84 wins, the Astros won two fewer than they did last season. They'll look back at that 7-17 April with regret, and the same goes for their dreadful 4-15 record against the Rangers. Jose Altuve won his second batting title in three seasons. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

16. Kansas City Royals

Record: 81-81
Week 25 ranking: No. 17

A 3-2 loss in the season finale dropped the Royals to .500. The injury to Mike Moustakas certainly hurt, but the team will have to find a way to improve an offense that ranked 13th in the AL in runs. Sub-.300 OBPs from Alcides Escobar and Salvador Perez aren't helping. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

17. Pittsburgh Pirates

Record: 78-83-1
Week 25 ranking: No. 16

After sputtering to a sub-.500 finish with a rash of September injuries, the Pirates have some difficult choices to make this offseason, with Gerrit Cole's health a wild card. The club still has most of its key players in place for at least two more seasons, but it stands to lose late-season revelation Ivan Nova, and with a number of players earning raises, the Pirates might have limited payroll space to add depth. -- Ryan P. Morrison (@ryanpmorrison), Inside the 'Zona

18. Miami Marlins

Record: 79-82
Week 25 ranking: No. 18

Obviously a beyond difficult end to the season for the Marlins. Nice gesture by Don Mattingly to let Martin Prado player-manage in the last game of the season. -- ESPN.com

19. Chicago White Sox

Record: 78-84
Week 25 ranking: No. 20

The White Sox entered the year with expectations to compete for a playoff spot, and after a hot start, they pushed their chips in with a few key trades. The results didn't come around for the club, however, and the Sox finished in fourth place in the AL Central. Skipper Robin Ventura is on his way out, with Rick Renteria likely to lead the team in 2017 as the White Sox look to retool. -- Jeff Wiser (@OutfieldGrass24), Inside the 'Zona

20. Colorado Rockies

Record: 75-87
Week 25 ranking: No. 19

A seven-win improvement on 2015 is nothing to sneeze at, but there's the feeling that it could've been so much more. With a crop of good, young starting pitching, the Rockies go into the offseason needing to yet again fix their bullpen, which was an issue all season and was responsible for the losses in their last two games of 2016. -- Richard Bergstrom (@rbergstromjr), Rockies Zingers

21. Los Angeles Angels

Record: 74-88
Week 25 ranking: No. 25

Did Mike Trout do enough to win the MVP? He finished .315/.441/.550 with 29 homers, 100 RBIs, 123 runs and 30 stolen bases. He led the majors in runs, OBP and WAR. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

22. Milwaukee Brewers

Record: 73-89
Week 25 ranking: No. 21

Despite their record, the Brewers had a successful season. In a year of rebuilding, they were sellers at the deadline and now have arguably the best farm system in baseball. Young players on the roster received meaningful development. The rebuild tag has been lifted, and there's optimism in Milwaukee that this team could piece together a wild-card run in 2017. -- Gabe Stoltz (@Stoltzy3), Disciples of Uecker

23. Philadelphia Phillies

Record: 71-91
Week 25 ranking: No. 25

While watching Ryan Howard's last game as a Phillie, it was easy to flash back to the World Series years when the offense was great. You don't need to squint to see the potential in Philadelphia's young hitters, in terms of power, but as far as getting on base, they make Jimmy Rollins look like Chase Utley. -- Richard Bergstrom (@rbergstromjr), Rockies Zingers

24. Atlanta Braves

Record: 68-93
Week 25 ranking: No. 27

Considering how well the Braves played for interim manager Brian Snitker, especially their 18-10 finish in September and October, it will be hard for the team to replace him. -- Martin Gandy (@gondeee), Chop County

25. San Diego Padres

Record: 68-94
Week 25 ranking: No. 26

Luis Perdomo, a Rule 5 pick, led the team in innings pitched, which is pretty much all you need to know about the 2016 Padres. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

26. Oakland Athletics

Record: 69-93
Week 25 ranking: No. 23

The Athletics finished in last place in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 1997 and '98, back when they were in the four-team AL West. They ended up one of six teams with 68 or 69 wins (the Twins won 59). That means that if they'd lost their final two games, they'd be picking second overall. Instead, they'll be drafting sixth. -- David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield), SweetSpot

27. Cincinnati Reds

Record: 68-94
Week 25 ranking: No. 29

This was a bad season overall, but the Reds played .500 baseball after the All-Star break, led by Joey Votto's .411 average (he was the first player to hit .400 in the second half since Ichiro in 2004). For the first time since the division championship year of 2010, the Reds had four players hit at least 20 home runs: Votto, Adam Duvall, Eugenio Suarez and Jay Bruce. -- Chad Dotson (@dotsonc), Redleg Nation

28. Tampa Bay Rays

Record: 68-94
Week 25 ranking: No. 24

The 2016 Rays should be remembered for hitting a ton of dingers and having some surprisingly good -- and healthy -- starting pitching. The team will yet again be tasked with finding a left-handed bat that can play some outfield or first base, and the Rays will need to pull up every rug they can to find a starting catcher. However, it is the bullpen that should see the strongest focus. -- Jason Hanselman (@sandykazmir), The Process Report

29. Arizona Diamondbacks

Record: 69-93
Week 25 ranking: No. 28

Jean Segura and Paul Goldschmidt both joined the 20-30 club, Jake Lamb broke out to blast 29 home runs, Yasmany Tomas launched 31, and Brandon Drury emerged with a 1.077 OPS since Sept. 1. Even so, the D-backs fell short of even the most pessimistic projections this season and will pick No. 7 in the 2017 draft, rather than No. 3, thanks to a win in the season's last game. It'll be back to the pitching drawing board this winter, despite some strong performances on the mound to end the season. -- Ryan P. Morrison (@ryanpmorrison), Inside the 'Zona

30. Minnesota Twins

Record: 59-103
Week 25 ranking: No. 30

After a promising 83-79 record in 2015, the Twins took a big step back this season, finishing 59-103. One bright spot is that Minnesota will have the No. 1 overall pick in the draft and the most pool money to spend. -- ESPN.com