Believe it or not, we're creeping up on the one-third mark of the big-league season, with Wednesday's games officially marking the end of the second month of the 2017 campaign. Memorial Day is a fairly significant one on the baseball calendar, because this is when a number of decision-makers around the league start to look at their teams with a more critical eye. Dismissing trends as being too early becomes more difficult. With the results piling up, preseason expectations are trumped by reality and teams start positioning themselves to consolidate or pivot.
With the end of another month, it's time for another round of checkups across baseball, repeating the exercise I began last month. However, with the trade deadline just two months away, we're going to change things up a tad. We're still displaying the updated forecasts and playoff odds for each team and how they've changed during May.
And we're grouping teams a little differently by putting more emphasis on their respective buy, hold and sell statuses. We've put the teams into five tiers: ready to buy, probable buyers, still holding, probable sellers and open for business. The groupings have all been determined by each team's probability to make the postseason, according to FiveThirtyEight. The ranking noted for each team reflects its current standing in my power rating system, and teams are listed in order by that ranking within each group.
Ready to buy
Rev. forecast: 105.0 wins | Monthly change: 11.3
FiveThirtyEight playoff odds: 94 percent | Monthly change: 19 percent
Cody Bellinger's arrival gives the Dodgers awesome star power atop a roster that already featured Corey Seager, Clayton Kershaw and Kenley Jansen. But the rise of the Dodgers continues largely because of the depth built up by general manager Andrew Friedman. With injury question marks in the rotation and a concerning lack of power from Adrian Gonzalez, Friedman might need to augment that depth even more.
Rev. forecast: 102.1 wins | Monthly change: 8.7
FiveThirtyEight playoff odds: 97 percent | Monthly change: 12 percent
Before the season, the only thing it appeared Houston lacked was a No. 2 starter to slot behind Dallas Keuchel. However, Lance McCullers Jr. has emerged as one of the breakout pitchers in the game. Now the need shifts toward the end of the rotation, which in this year's trade market should be a relatively easy trade piece to add.
Rev. forecast: 99.7 wins | Monthly change: 2.8
FiveThirtyEight playoff odds: 92 percent | Monthly change: 4 percent
The Nationals' title hopes are likely to hinge on Mike Rizzo's ability to add a lockdown reliever or two over the next couple of months. That pitcher doesn't necessarily have to be a closer since the Nationals have some quality bullpen arms already on the roster. They just don't have enough of them.