The Sun's national basbeaall writer, Peter Schmuck,...


The Sun's national basbeaall writer, Peter Schmuck, ranks the major leagues' 28 teams.

Rank, Team, Previous Rank, Comment

1. New York Yankees, 1, Starting rotation on a roll, which means Yanks just might be for real.

2. Atlanta Braves, 2, Not as overpowering as in April, but still clear favorite to win NL flag.

3. Chicago White Sox, 7, Heart of lineup is pumping up the volume in AL Central.

4. Boston Red Sox, 4, Right there, but Dawson knee injury is a twist of fate this club didn't need.

5. Baltimore Orioles, 5, Didn't they trade that Gomez guy back in spring training?

6. Montreal Expos, 6, Parlez vous "Wild Card?"

7. Cincinnati Reds, 3, Thin air, thin pitching add up to tough series in Colorado.

8. Los Angeles Dodgers, 8, Still flying high while rest of West goes south.

9. San Francisco Giants, 9, Perhaps early NL West coronation was a bit premature.

10. Cleveland Indians, 11, Back in business after short stay in fifth place.

11. Houston Astros, 15, Could be ready to make a move on Reds.

12. St. Louis Cardinals, 14, Seventeen baserunners Tuesday, no runs. That ought to count for something.

13. Toronto Blue Jays, 10, Blue Jays continue to struggle. Enjoy it while it lasts.

14. Philadelphia Phillies, 22, Despite everything, defending NL champs appear to be rising out of the ashes of horrendous start.

15. Minnesota Twins , 12, Still above .500, but big comeback appears to be losing steam.

16. Kansas City Royals, 13, Don't seem to know which way to turn.

17. Florida Marlins, 16, Still refusing to play like an expansion club.

18. Chicago Cubs , 25, Not as bad as first month. Not as good as last 10 days.

19. Colorado Rockies, 19, Rocky Mountain high was beginning to wear off until Reds arrived in town.

20. New York Mets, 17, Mets flirting with fifth place, but it's still no rerun of 1993.

21. Texas Rangers, 20, Finally figured it out. They're just pacing themselves so they'll be fresh for the stretch run.

22. California Angels, 24, Have played well in first week under new manager Marcel Lachemann, but Rodgers firing still reeks.

23. Seattle Mariners, 21, You know it's getting bad when the teams ahead of you start firing their managers.

24. Pittsburgh Pirates, 18, That loud noise you just heard was the Pirates hitting bottom in the NL Central.

25. Detroit Tigers , 23, But they're not in the AL West, so forget it.

26. Oakland Athletics, 27, The funny thing is, A's still could win the West. But then, so could Towson State.

27. San Diego Padres, 28, Wouldn't trade Gomez for a 2-8 pitcher anyway.

28. Milwaukee Brewers, 26, Kind of makes you wax nostalgic about 1988.

) Through Wednesday's games


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