In a weekly post, we'll take a look around the AL West — what's happened so far, and what's on tap in the coming days.
1. Houston Astros (30-18) — The Astros aren't the hottest team in the division — not even close — but they still hold a six-game lead over everyone else in it and are the majors' first team to 30 wins this season. With more young studs set to come up this summer, it appears the Astros are set for the long haul. Not a complete surprise, but this soon? Yeah it's a bit of a shock to the system. Next up: Friday, 7:10 p.m., vs. Chicago White Sox.
2. Seattle Mariners (23-23) — Here's where the jumbled mess begins. Nelson Cruz continues to carry the Mariners' offense, and they're starting to get some starters back from injury. They still aren't playing great like everyone expected at the beginning of the year, but they remain arguably the scariest team in the division. Next up:Tonight, 9:10 p.m., vs. Cleveland Indians.
3. Texas Rangers (23-24) — Still the hottest team in baseball despite their blowout loss on Wednesday, the Rangers have won eight of their last 10 games and have one of the hottest offenses in baseball for the month of May. Pretty crazy considering how cold the bats were in April. Next up:Tonight, 7:05 p.m., vs. Boston Red Sox.
4. Los Angeles Angels (23-24) — In a third-place tie with the Rangers, the Angels are dealing with some injuries, most notably to Albert Pujols, and are relying on their pitching staff to get them through games. Some nights it works, some nights it doesn't — pretty much the formula for a .500 team. Next up: Tonight, 9:05 p.m., vs. Detroit Tigers.
5. Oakland Athletics (17-32) — How fast they have fallen. The A's have been the AL West champs or the Wild Card since the 2012 season, but that's going to come to a screeching halt this year as they cleaned house after the 2014 season and started rebuilding. We expected a dropoff, but nothing like this. Next up: Tonight, 9:05 p.m., vs. New York Yankees.