An A-plus and how many F's?! First-half grades for all 30 MLB teams

Atlanta is on pace for 109 wins which would be the second-most in the NL since 1962. Mike Carlson/AP

It was a surprising and spectacular first half. Average game times are down 25 minutes and stolen bases are up 41% for the highest rate since 1997, thanks to the new rules. Five of the six division races are within two games. Shohei Ohtani continues to do things we've never seen before, including an awe-inspiring June in which he hit .394 with 15 home runs and had a 3.26 ERA in five starts as a pitcher. Ronald Acuna Jr. is on pace for a season we've never seen before: 38 home runs, 75 stolen bases and the most runs scored since 2001.

The Reds are good. They called up Elly De La Cruz, a 6-foot-5 typhoon of speed and power who immediately emerged as one of the most exciting players in the game, including stealing second, third and home the other day in a whirlwind trip around the bases. He's hit .325 with 16 stolen bases and 41 hits, the first player in MLB history to reach those numbers in his first 30 games. Meanwhile, the Mets are bad. With a payroll that shattered the previous record high, they are six games under .500 and 18½ games behind the Braves, who are on pace to set a single-season home run record.

The Rays roared out of the gate with 13 consecutive wins. The A's were an unfathomable 10-45 at one point. Luis Arraez chased .400 into late June. The Angels beat the Rockies 25-1, the third-largest margin of victory in a game since 1900. And fans are loving it all. Average attendance is up over 2,200 fans per game compared to the same juncture in 2022. Ten teams are up more than 4,000 per game.

With the first half in the books, let's give all 30 teams a grade on their performance, relative to their preseason expectations. We'll start with the best team of the first half.

MLB season preview: Rankings, playoff odds for all 30 teams

First-month grades