It’s only May, but the 2011 season has already proven to be unique. When the historically top contenders dwell amongst the bottom and the small market “weaklings” rise to the top, it makes most fans think fluke. But think again sports fans! Hot starts are beginning to mold into team culture and the dynamic of MLB is making for a fresh looking Top Ten. Let the Debate Begin.

#1 Philadelphia Phillies

The Phillies retain the top spot in our weekly rankings even though they lost two of three at Arizona and a 14 inning marathon to the Mets. Another week, another complete game win for Roy Halladay. He held the Mets to just seven hits and one run on Saturday, adding another eight K’s. On the other side of the ball, Ryan Howard continues to do his part batting .290 with six homeruns and a league leading 28 RBI. This balanced attack has allowed the Phillies to remain #1 in our rankings for the third straight week.

#2 Cleveland Indians

The Indians made a strong case for the top spot this week winning all six of their games. Now with the best overall record in the majors (19-8), Cleveland is winning with balance. They hold the second best average in the American League (.272) and the third best team ERA in the American League (3.48). What is even more impressive is that they aren’t relying on any one player for production; five players with 15 or more RBI’s and seven players with four or more HR’s.

#3 Colorado Rockies

The Rockie’s bats appear to be cooling off and with staff ace Ubaldo Jimenez looking less than stellar Sunday (4.0 INN, 6 H, 4 ER) it will be interesting to see how they respond to early adversity. 2010 break out star Carlos Gonzalez has yet to realize spring training ended and is hitting only .232 with one homer and 22 SO. This teams needs his high average to help propel their offense otherwise their strong pitching staff will go to waste.

#4 New York Yankees

The Yanks went 4-3 this week but continued to knock the stuffing out of the baseball. They lead the Majors in both HR’s (45) and slugging (.475) in the fewest games played by any team so far. 2010 MVP candidate Robinson Cano is back at it in 2011 as he is now hitting .320 with eight HR’s and is leading his team to their favorite spot atop the AL East standings.

#5 Texas Rangers

A five loss week drops the Rangers to number five in our rankings, however this team is still one of the most dangerous in the game. The offense is producing, 5th in runs (142) and 2nd in slugging (.462), but the pitching has hit a few spring pot holes. The team ERA has dropped from a league leading 2.79 after nine games to a middle-of-the-pack 3.95 after 28 games.

#6 St. Louis Cardinals

The red hot Cardinals lead the Majors in runs (149), AVG (.295), fewest SO (148), and are third in slugging (.448). As long as Matt Holliday (.418) and Lance Berkman (.398) keep hitting every ball they see, this team will continue to rise in both the divisional standings and in the NYSOS power rankings. Something of note: the best offense in baseball is doing it all with superstar Albert Pujols hitting a dainty .245.

#7 Florida Marlins

The young Marlins are now 17-9 and have won seven of their last ten. With less than note worthy offensive production, the Marlins have relied on, and received, plenty of stud pitching performances early on. In house magic man Josh Johnson is now 3-0 with a .88 ERA while averaging just under one strikeout per inning. Hanley Ramirez finally hit his first home run of the season on Sunday, hopefully sparking the youngster into his normal all-star form.

#8 Los Angeles Angels

The Angels rebounded from being swept by the Red Sox by winning four games this week and continuing to showcase their top-notch starting rotation. The Angels staff leads the league in quality starts (20), is third in ERA (2.93), and second in opponents BA (.220). Another four game set with Boston will be a good test this week as the Angels continue to play good baseball.

#9 Cincinnati Reds

Last week’s #6 team dropped this week due to the fact that they haven’t won back to back games since April 12th. This team is still hitting with the best teams in the league, however their consistency is causing their overall standing to fall; losing their division’s top spot to the Cardinals for the first time in 2011.

#10 Kansas City Royals

The AL central divisional standings are almost the complete opposite of what they were at the end of 2010. The ultra young Royals sit behind only Cleveland and are continuing to impress offensively as they rank in the top 10 for all major batting stats. The down side however is the pitching staff allowing opponents an AVG of .279, good for 29th in the majors. As long as manager Ned Yost continues to develop this young team, the Royals should be ready for a quality season.

#20 New York Mets

The Mets snapped their 3 game skid with a victory over the top team in this ranking, the Phillies. Strong wins like these are exactly what this team needs to turn their season around. One bright spot is young first baseman Ike Davis who is now hitting .323 with five home runs and 20 RBI’s, leading the team in each category.