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


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

Rank, Team, Previous Rank, Comment

1. Cleveland Indians, 5, No joke. The mistake by the lake has been corrected.

2. Baltimore Orioles, 6, Once sporatic O's have caught stride. Look out.

3. Atlanta Braves, 3, Great team has been sputtering lately, but no serious setbacks.

4. Cincinnati Reds, 4, Two Ohio teams are combined 56-22 at home.

5. New York Yankees, 1, Had to cool off sooner or later. Still to be reckoned with.

6. Montreal Expos, 2, If they had one more Ken Hill, they'd be best team in baseball.

7. Chicago White Sox, 7, The only thing holding them back is the terrific Tribe.

8. Houston Astros, 8, Strong week only good enough to maintain status quo in NL Central.

9. Los Angeles Dodgers, 10, NL West coronation is beginning to look like a foregone conclusion.

10. Oakland Athletics, 20, If A's stay hot another week, they might run away with weak West.

11. Kansas City Royals, 11, Stuck in the middle of solid AL Central, and figure to stay there.

12. Texas Rangers, 18, Beginning to respond to surprising challenge from A's.

13. Colorado Rockies, 15, Have positioned themselves to score historic NL West upset if Dodgers collapse.

14. St. Louis Cardinals, 9, Getting ready to fall by the wayside in NL Central.

15. Philadelphia Phillies, 13, Not even Fernando can put NL Champs back together again.

16. Pittsburgh Pirates, 16, Maybe generous City Council could find them a couple of hitters, too.

17. Minnesota Twins, 12, Big early season rush has fizzled out, but Twins could still be a factor.

18. San Francisco Giants, 19, The Straw should make a difference, but will it be enough?

19. Milwaukee Brewers, 21, Not a last-place club, except in balanced AL Central.

20. Boston Red Sox, 24, Still slipping, even at expense of lowly Angels.

21. Detroit Tigers, 14, Not even reassignment to AL West would help at this point.

22. Florida Marlins, 17, Now playing like a second-year expansion club.

23. California Angels, 22, Now playing like a second-year expansion club.

24. Toronto Blue Jays, 26, Still on top of Padres, but only as matter of professional courtesy.

25. San Diego Padres, 28, Incredibly, they're still not entirely out of contention in NL West.

26. Seattle Mariners, 23, Thud. That was the sound of Mariners falling into last-place tie on Wednesday.

27. New York Mets, 27, Need someone like Vince Coleman to light a fire under them.

28. Chicago Cubs, 25, Cubbies just can't cut it. Wait until next year.

) Through Wednesday's games

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