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(photo credit: chron.com)

For an explanation of how the SD Score is calculated, see below.

1– Chicago Cubs (94-55) SD Score +3.21; Record this week (3-4), Ranking Last Week – 1

Opponents – at Cardinals (2-1), Brewers (1-3)

Chicago is still at the top, but blew an opportunity to officially pull away from the Nationals by losing 3 of 4 to the Brewers.

2 – Washington Nationals (88-61); SD Score +2.10; Record this week (3-3), Ranking Last Week – 2

Opponents – Mets (2-1), at Braves (1-2)

Like the Cubs, the Nationals missed an opportunity by losing 2 of 3 to a bad team.

3 – Texas Rangers (88-62) SD Score +0.27; Record this week (3-4), Ranking Last Week – 3

Opponents – at Astros (2-1), A’s (1-2)

The Rangers still own the top record in the AL and have a good chance to extend it as the schedule softens.

4 – Cleveland Indians (86-63); SD Score +1.58; Record this week (3-4), Ranking Last Week – 4

Opponents – at White Sox (1-3), Tigers (2-1)

The Indians will likely clinch the Central next week, but until then, they still have a shot to catch Texas.

5 – Boston Red Sox (85-64); SD Score +2.90; Record this week (5-2), Ranking Last Week – 6

Opponents – Orioles (1-2), Yankees (4-0)

Boston holds a 3 game lead in the East and faces the Orioles for a huge 4 game series.

6 – Los Angeles Dodgers (84-65) SD Score +1.04; Record this week (4-3) Ranking Last Week – 5

Opponents –at Yankees (2-1), at Diamondbacks (2-2)

The Dodgers have great chance to clinch the West even if it’s unofficially, by taking two games against the Giants.

7 – Baltimore Orioles (82-67); SD Score +0.47; Record this week (4-3) Ranking Last Week – 7

Opponents – at Red Sox (2-1), Rays (2-2)

The Orioles are still in the hunt for the AL East crown, but need to play well this week against Boston.

8 – Toronto Blue Jays (81-68); SD Score +1.13; Record this week (3-4), Ranking Last Week – 8

Opponents – Rays (1-2), At Angels (2-2)

The next several games are huge for the Blue Jays as they try to ensure a playoff berth while still keeping the AL East race close.

9 – New York Mets (80-69); SD Score +0.05; Record this week (4-2), Ranking Last Week – 10

Opponents –at Nationals (1-2), Twins (3-0)

The Mets should be able to make the playoffs and not long ago, that seemed out of reach.

10 – San Francisco Giants (79-70); SD Score +0.80; Record this week (2-5), Ranking Last Week – 9

Opponents –Padres (0-3), Cardinals (2-2)

Splitting with the Cardinals was acceptable, but getting swept at home against the Padres is not. Huge series tomorrow with the Dodgers.

11 – Detroit Tigers (79-70); SD Score +0.04; Record this week (3-4), Ranking Last Week – 11

Opponents –Twins (2-2), at Indians (1-2)

The Tigers are still alive for the Central crown, but need to play perfect over their next 10 games.

12 – St. Louis Cardinals (78-71) SD Score +0.98; Record this week (3-4), Ranking Last Week – 12

Opponents –Cubs (1-2), at Giants (2-2)

Well, it’s another week and the Cardinals are still in the Wild Card race and only out by a game.

13– Seattle Mariners (79-70); SD Score +0.82; Record this week (4-2), Ranking Last Week – 14

Opponents –at Angels (3-0), Astros (1-2)

Even though Seattle lost the Houston series, they are now only two games behind in the Wild Card race.

14 – Houston Astros (78-71); SD Score +0.60; Record this week (3-3), Ranking Last Week – 15

Opponents –Rangers (1-2), at Mariners (2-1)

The Astros are still very much alive for a playoff berth, but now need to beat up Oakland and the Angels and not allow them to be spoilers.

15 – New York Yankees (77-72); SD Score -0.40; Record this week (1-6), Ranking Last Week – 13

Opponents –Dodgers (1-2), at Red Sox (0-4)

Now 4 games behind in the Wild Card, the Yankees took a step backwards and find themselves on the road at Toronto.

16 – Kansas City Royals (76-73); SD Score -0.61; Record this week (2-5), Ranking Last Week – 16

Opponents –A’s (0-4), White Sox (2-1)

Remember how they had a favorable schedule and could get into the hunt? Yeah forget all that. The Royals may have blown it by getting swept by the A’s.

17 – Colorado Rockies (72-77); SD Score +0.63; Record this week (3-3), Ranking Last Week – 17

Opponents –Giants (2-1), at Padres (2-2)

The Rockies are better than what their record is and would now need to have a near perfect September to make the Wild Card.

18 – Miami Marlins (71-72); SD Score -0.35; Record this week (3-3), Ranking Last Week – 18

Opponents –at Diamondbacks (0-3), Padres (3-0)

Miami is five games out of the Wild card, but will have to run the table.

19 – Pittsburgh Pirates (74-75); SD Score -0.01; Record this week (5-3), Ranking Last Week – 19

Opponents –at Phillies (2-2), at Reds (3-1)

The Pirates were able to get within 5 games now, but will have to beat up the Cubs and Nationals. Not likely.

20 – Chicago White Sox (72-77); SD Score -0.54; Record this week (4-3), Ranking Last Week – 20

Opponents –Indians (3-1), at Royals (1-2)

The Sox can play the role of the spoiler this week against the Indians again, but their season is over.

21 – Milwaukee Brewers (68-82); SD Score -0.84; Record this week (4-3), Ranking Last Week – 22

Opponents –at Reds (1-2), at Cubs (3-1)

Losing to the Reds but beating the Cubs makes no sense. But that’s life in Milwaukee.

22 – Philadelphia Phillies (67-83); SD Score -2.46; Record this week (4-3), Ranking Last Week – 23

Opponents –Pirates (2-2), Miami (2-1)

Phillies last gasp was to wreck Miami’s playoff hopes this week and they may have accomplished that.

23 – Los Angeles Angels (65-84); SD Score -0.58; Record this week (2-5), Ranking Last Week – 21

Opponents –Mariners (0-3), Blue Jays (2-2)

Over the next several days, I feel a little bad for Texas and Houston as the Angels continue to play the role of the spoiler.

24 – Tampa Bay Rays (64-85); SD Score -0.42; Record this week (4-3), Ranking Last Week – 24

Opponents –at Blue Jays (2-1), at Orioles (2-2)

Tampa had a chance this season, but really fell behind. It would have been interesting to see how they could have fared against New York and Boston this week, had things gone better.

25 – Oakland A’s (66-83); SD Score -1.38; Record this week (6-1), Ranking Last Week – 26

Opponents –at Royals (4-0), at Rangers (2-1)

The A’s have a chance to be a spoiler in the coming weeks, but largely will just be looking towards 2017.

26 – Cincinnati Reds (63-86); SD Score -1.79; Record this week (3-4), Ranking Last Week – 25

Opponents –Brewers (2-1), Pirates (1-3)

As is with the bottom 10 teams, the Reds are looking to rebuild next season.

27 – Arizona Diamondbacks (63-86); SD Score -1.81; Record this week (5-2), Ranking Last Week – 28

Opponents –Rockies (3-0), Dodgers (2-2)

Maybe Arizona isn’t the team you want to play right now if you’re trying to make the playoffs.

28 – San Diego Padres (62-87); SD Score -1.26; Record this week (3-4), Ranking Last Week – 27

Opponents –at Giants (3-0), at Rockies (0-3)

The Padres will rebuild, but they dealt the Giants a pretty crushing blow by sweeping them.

29 – Atlanta Braves (58-91); SD Score -2.30; Record this week (3-3), Ranking Last Week – 29

Opponents –Marlins (1-2), Nationals (2-1)

The Braves seemed determined to not end the season with the league’s worst record, but then again….

30 – Minnesota Twins (55-95); SD Score -1.88; Record this week (2-5), Ranking Last Week – 30

Opponents –at Tigers (2-2), at Mets (0-3)

The Twins probably won’t even be able to be a spoiler the rest of the way.

SD Score explanation:

Run production is one of the best measures of how a team is performing and how dominant or bad they are.

The formula takes each team’s runs scored and runs allowed totals and how many standard deviations from the league average they are.

Example: 1927 Yankees

The 27 Yankees score 975 runs (1927 AL average was 762 and SD of team runs for the AL was about 115). Take the difference from the league average (975-762=213) and divide by the SD (115), the 1927 Yankees were 1.85 SD above the league average in runs scored.

They allowed 599 runs (the SD in runs allowed for the 1927 AL was about 88.5), which was 163 runs less than the league average. 163/88.5 gives us a 1.84 SD above the league average in runs allowed.

Add 1.85 and 1.84 to get a final SD Score of +3.69 for the 1927 Yankees, which is amazing.

(SD ranking explanation found in “Baseball Dynasties: The Greatest Teams of All Time” by Rob Neyer and Eddie Epstein)