Power Rankings: Astros still rule, but new challengers emerge

Rockies making a splash in Week 7 Power Rankings (1:37)

Mark Teixeira and Tim Kurkjian break down the Week 7 Power Rankings with Houston at the top and explain how the Rockies' bullpen has lead them to the top 5. (1:37)

Despite some up-and-down play from each last week, there was no change in the top five in this week's Power Rankings. But look past the Houston Astros, Washington Nationals, New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers and Baltimore Orioles, and there was a lot of movement in the second half of the top 10 as teams make their own moves up in the standings.

Let's start with this week's biggest gain, as the Texas Rangers moved up seven slots to break into the top 10 on the strength of a 10-game winning streak that brought them back over .500 to recover from their slow start to the season. The Colorado Rockies moved ahead of the Chicago Cubs to No. 6 and are knocking on the door of the top five. The Arizona Diamondbacks joined the Rockies and Dodgers in the top 10, making a case that the majors' strongest division might be the NL West.

The single biggest drop was by the Cincinnati Reds, who tumbled eight slots with their 1-8 slide while allowing at least six runs in each of their past seven games. Only slightly behind them were the St. Louis Cardinals, who dropped seven places to fall out of the top 10. The Boston Red Sox also fell out of the top 10 with their drop back around .500.

This week's voters are Bradford Doolittle, Eric Karabell, Tim Kurkjian, David Schoenfield and Mark Simon.

Week 6 rankings | Week 5 | Week 4 | Week 3 | Week 2 | Week 1 | Preseason

1. Houston Astros

Record: 29-15
Week 6 ranking: No. 1

This was not a great weekend, as the Indians came into Houston and swept the three-game series, Dallas Keuchel landed on the DL with a pinched nerve in his neck and will miss a start, Brian McCann landed on the seven-day concussion DL, and Joe Musgrove got pounded and saw his ERA rise to 5.63. -- David Schoenfield, ESPN.com

2. Washington Nationals

Record: 26-17
Week 6 ranking: No. 2

A funny thing happened on the way to divisional domination -- a skid. The beleaguered bullpen will get reinforcements, but there are other concerns, namely Tanner Roark's past two starts (11 runs in 9⅔ IP) and Gio Gonzalez's ERA/FIP differential (2.86 versus 5.24). Dusty Baker has let both of them rack up high pitch counts; Gonzalez has thrown 108, 112 and 116 pitches in his past three outings. Could that haunt them in September/October? -- Mark Simon, ESPN Stats & Information

3. New York Yankees

Record: 25-16
Week 6 ranking: No. 3

The Yankees finally lost a game in which Aaron Judge homered -- on Saturday, when he notched his 15th. The team is still 12-1 when Judge hits at least one home run in a game. As with many of Judge's accomplishments in his short career, his 15th homer in his 38th game was noteworthy; the Elias Sports Bureau reported that it was the fewest games it has taken a rookie to reach 15 in a season since Mark McGwire in 1987 (35 games). -- Sarah Langs, ESPN Stats & Information

4. Los Angeles Dodgers

Record: 26-19
Week 6 ranking: No. 4

With the Cubs and Cardinals coming to town, the Dodgers could make a statement in the NL this week. Despite the setback of losing Justin Turner to a hamstring strain, the Dodgers' remarkable depth should let them roll with this latest injury, as they might just move hot-hitting Chris Taylor to third once second baseman Logan Forsythe returns to action later this week. -- Christina Kahrl, ESPN.com

5. Baltimore Orioles

Record: 25-17
Week 6 ranking: No. 5

It was a banner week for Chris Davis. On Tuesday night, he hit go-ahead home runs in the 12th and 13th innings of the Orioles' game in Detroit. He became the second player in Browns/Orioles franchise history with two go-ahead home runs in extra innings; the other was Vern Stephens with the St. Louis Browns in 1943. On Thursday, Davis added his 250th career home run. -- Sarah Langs, ESPN Stats & Information

6. Colorado Rockies

Record: 28-17
Week 6 ranking: No. 9

Stop being surprised: The Rockies' depth has been tested by injuries from the start, but they just keep finding solutions that could stick, such as Mark Reynolds solidifying his place alongside Nolan Arenado and Charlie Blackmon as a threat at any altitude. With Jon Gray, Trevor Story and David Dahl on the mend, the question isn't whether the Rockies are surprising but whether they might get even better. -- Christina Kahrl, ESPN.com

7. Chicago Cubs

Record: 22-20
Week 6 ranking: 7

The Cubs continue to hover around .500, never getting too high or too low. When should we start being concerned? They've outscored their opponents, but not by much. They're middle of the pack in starting pitcher ERA and offense. But the bullpen has been good all season, and Ian Happ has provided a spark for the offense since he homered in his big league debut last week. If Addison Russell and Kyle Schwarber start hitting at even average levels, watch out. -- John Fisher, ESPN Stats & Information

8. Texas Rangers

Record: 24-21
Week 6 ranking: No. 15

The 10-game winning streak was snapped Saturday, but the Rangers clawed back over .500 with the streak. The rotation had nine quality starts in the 10 games, and Matt Bush recorded four saves as the closer. Keone Kela has appeared to pitch himself into a role as one of the primary setup arms after a couple of excellent two-inning outings. -- David Schoenfield, ESPN.com

9. Cleveland Indians

Record: 23-19
Week 6 ranking: No. 10

Maybe a three-game sweep in Houston can jump-start an Indians team that has mostly treaded water thanks to an offense that has struggled to put runs on the board. Edwin Encarnacion continues to hover around the Mendoza line, and Jason Kipnis is struggling at the plate. In the rotation, Corey Kluber is still on the DL, while Carlos Carrasco was forced to leave his previous start with a pectoral injury, but he's on track to make his next on May 23. Mike Clevinger has been great as a substitute so far, but the Indians need their stars to step up. -- Michael Bonzagni, ESPN Stats & Information

10. Arizona Diamondbacks

Record: 26-19
Week 6 ranking: No. 11

If you thought A.J. Pollock's latest injury would immediately stop the D-backs, guess again. They've won five of six since then, with players beyond stars Zack Greinke and Paul Goldschmidt helping pick up the slack. Zack Godley has been excellent since he took the injured Shelby Miller's place in the rotation, and Jake Lamb led the way with four homers to power the first Pollock-free week. -- Christina Kahrl, ESPN.com

11. Milwaukee Brewers

Record: 25-19
Week 6 ranking: No. 14

The Brewers aren't going anywhere just yet. They continue to put up a ton of runs, with everybody in the lineup chipping in, including Jett Bandy, a 31st-round pick who has been one of baseball's best-hitting catchers. But their real secret weapon is reliever Corey Knebel, who recently took over the closer's role. -- John Fisher, ESPN Stats & Information

12. Boston Red Sox

Record: 22-21
Week 6 ranking: No. 8

Xander Bogaerts continues to have one of the most unique seasons. He's hitting .320 and has an .820 OPS, but he hasn't homered, and his defensive metrics are poor, with minus-8 defensive runs saved (he had minus-10 DRS all of last season). -- David Schoenfield, ESPN.com

13. St. Louis Cardinals

Record: 22-19
Week 6 ranking: No. 6

The Cardinals continue to get great starting pitching from everybody except Adam Wainwright, so they're in almost every game. Carlos Martinez had his best outing Saturday, completing nine innings for the first time. Offensively, Jedd Gyorko and Matt Carpenter continue to hit for power. The Cards' schedule will take a tough turn: Their next four series are against the Dodgers, Rockies and Cubs, with three of them on the road. -- John Fisher, ESPN Stats & Information

14. Tampa Bay Rays

Record: 23-23
Week 6 ranking: No. 17

The most notable thing about the Rays is that every position player on the roster has brought something good to the table. Some of that has been unexpected. No one thought Corey Dickerson would play like an MVP candidate. Tim Beckham's breakthrough has allowed the team to survive the absence of Matt Duffy. The Rays also have borrowed a page from the Cubs' playbook: Draw lots of walks and play good defense, and good things will happen. -- Mark Simon, ESPN Stats & Information

15. Minnesota Twins

Record: 22-18
Week 6 ranking: No. 12

Jose Berrios followed his 7⅔ IP, one-earned-run outing in his season debut with 7⅔ innings of shutout ball with 11 strikeouts in his second start. Before this season, Berrios had never pitched more than six innings in a start or struck out more than eight batters in an outing. He was the youngest Twins pitcher with 11 strikeouts in a game since a 22-year-old Francisco Liriano did so in 2006, and he was the first Twins pitcher to reach that mark within his first 16 career games since Bert Blyleven on Aug. 4, 1970 at age 19. -- Sarah Langs, ESPN Stats & Information

16. Detroit Tigers

Record: 21-21
Week 6 ranking: No. 16

The Tigers start an 11-game road trip, their longest of the season, on Monday. Their first four games are against the Astros, who sport the best record in the majors, followed by two intradivision series against the White Sox and Royals. Miguel Cabrera has been hit with nagging injuries all year, and the rotation has been bad. The Tigers need to have a successful road trip because their window seems to be closing rapidly. -- Michael Bonzagni, ESPN Stats & Information

17. Los Angeles Angels

Record: 23-23
Week 6 ranking: No. 21

Mike Trout has a major-league-best 1.223 OPS this season. That's the best through the team's first 46 games in Angels franchise history. Stop me if you've heard this before: Mike Trout is leading the majors in wins above replacement. He has led the American League in WAR in each of the past five seasons -- that's each full season of his career. If he leads again in his sixth straight season in 2017, he'll tie Babe Ruth (1926-31) for the most consecutive seasons leading his league in WAR. -- Sarah Langs, ESPN Stats & Information

18. Seattle Mariners

Record: 20-25
Week 6 ranking: No. 19

Chris Heston became the team's 11th starting pitcher with his Sunday start, and it didn't go well, as he was roughed up for seven runs in three innings. That followed Yovani Gallardo's 10-run outing Saturday. The Mariners are now second to last in ERA to the Mets, though the rotation, remarkably, is 17th, ahead of the Red Sox, Rockies, Tigers and Yankees, among others. -- David Schoenfield, ESPN.com

19. Chicago White Sox

Record: 20-22
Week 6 ranking: No. 22

There's a lot to be excited about with this young White Sox team. They have the second-youngest lineup in the AL, and the kids are delivering. Avisail Garcia leads the league in batting average, Yolmer Sanchez is hitting .387 in May, and after a dreadful start, Tim Anderson has hit .364 this month. On top of that, Jose Abreu has found his power stroke after hitting just two home runs in April. -- Michael Bonzagni, ESPN Stats & Information

20. Toronto Blue Jays

Record: 19-26
Week 6 ranking: No. 18

Joey Bats is heating up. After hitting just two home runs and nine RBIs with a .174 average in 31 games through May 7, Jose Bautista has hit five home runs with 13 RBIs and a .354 batting average in 14 games since. The Blue Jays are 8-6 since May 8. They were 11-20 through May 7. It sure helps when Bautista gets going offensively. -- Sarah Langs, ESPN Stats & Information

21. Cincinnati Reds

Record: 20-23
Week 6 ranking: No. 13

The Reds finally hit the skid everyone was waiting for, a seven-game losing streak that began with a 17th-inning walk-off home run by Buster Posey. This week will be a challenging one, with two home games against the Indians followed by an eight-game road trip that begins in Cleveland and goes to Philadelphia and Toronto. Reds starting pitchers have a 7.08 ERA on the road, easily the worst in the majors. -- Mark Simon, ESPN Stats & Information

22. San Francisco Giants

Record: 19-26
Week 6 ranking: No. 26

The Giants are becoming the comeback kids. After going two years between wins when trailing entering the ninth inning -- from May 10, 2015 (vs. Marlins) to May 10, 2017 (at Mets) -- they went another 10 days before picking up their next such win Friday against the Cardinals. The Giants were 0-133 when trailing entering the ninth from May 11, 2015, through May 9, 2017 -- the only team without that kind of comeback victory in that span. Since May 10 this season, they're 2-3 in such games. -- Sarah Langs, ESPN Stats & Information

23. Oakland Athletics

Record: 20-24
Week 6 ranking: No. 23

The A's won their weekend series with the Red Sox, despite Yonder Alonso's sitting out with a knee injury. Khris Davis continues to homer at a blistering pace, but the really good news for the A's is that Sonny Gray has posted back-to-back quality starts for the first time since July of last year. -- Michael Bonzagni, ESPN Stats & Information

24. New York Mets

Record: 18-24
Week 6 ranking: No. 20

Mets fans are used to excruciating wins, and until some of their key players return from injury, it's likely that there will be more unnecessary angst than easy victories. Terry Collins is trying all sorts of things to get some consistency with his bullpen, and he might have found something with sinkerballer Paul Sewald (14 strikeouts and one walk in his past 11 innings) and demoted starter Robert Gsellman (two scoreless innings on Saturday). Just how they drew it up! -- Mark Simon, ESPN Stats & Information

25. Pittsburgh Pirates

Record: 20-24
Week 6 ranking: No. 27

The Pirates have played well the past week and a half. Their bullpen has been solid, and they continue to get good starting pitching, including Trevor Williams pitching well in place of Jameson Taillon. But the hot stretch has coincided with Adam Frazier's return from the DL. With 14 of their next 19 games against the Braves, Mets and Marlins, the Pirates could keep their strong run going. -- John Fisher, ESPN Stats & Information

26. Atlanta Braves

Record: 18-23
Week 6 ranking: No. 29

It was only a matter of time before rookie shortstop Dansby Swanson came around. He couldn't get much lower than the first three weeks of the season, in which he hit .125 (8-for-64). The past two weeks, he has much more resembled the hitter who slashed .302/.361/.442 in 2016. Key to the improvement: Swanson has more regularly gone the other way, taking ground ball and line-drive singles to right rather than attempting to pull the ball with greater frequency. -- Mark Simon, ESPN Stats & Information

27. Kansas City Royals

Record: 18-25
Week 6 ranking: No. 28

The Royals' offense has been really bad, ranking last in the majors in runs and last in the AL in OPS, but at least their starters continue to pitch well. They're nearing the point where GM Dayton Moore said before the season that he would evaluate where they stand; the chance that they're sellers at the deadline increases with every loss. -- Michael Bonzagni, ESPN Stats & Information

28. Philadelphia Phillies

Record: 15-26
Week 6 ranking: No. 24

The Phillies have fallen apart, winning just four of their past 21 games. The only pitcher they can count on is Jeremy Hellickson, and he tweaked his back Friday. Vince Velasquez said he's "clueless" after his start Saturday. Odubel Herrera, an All-Star last season, hasn't come close to last year's production. If you're looking for a bright spot, Aaron Altherr and Tommy Joseph are two of baseball's best hitters this month. -- John Fisher, ESPN Stats & Information

29. Miami Marlins

Record: 15-28
Week 6 ranking: No. 25

The Marlins were 10-8 after beating the Padres on April 23, but things went south quickly. That this past week went how it did isn't surprising, given that the Marlins faced the Astros and Dodgers. Christian Yelich's struggles remain an unsolved mystery (though he did have some hamstring issues earlier in the season). He's still hitting home runs at a similar pace to last year's, which generated 21 blasts, but somehow he has managed only three doubles. -- Mark Simon, ESPN Stats & Information

30. San Diego Padres

Record: 16-30
Week 6 ranking: No. 30

The Padres are in a 4-14 rut that doesn't seem likely to end soon. Despite the benefit of calling Petco Park home, their rotation is running with the Reds and Giants for most runs allowed by an MLB starting staff. The bullpen, despite often not having to pitch the ninth inning, has allowed an NL-worst 95 runs. GM A.J. Preller punted on building a competitive roster; should he be congratulated for delivering on such a deliberately bad design? -- Christina Kahrl, ESPN.com