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Bleacher Report slates Pirates at No. 17 in latest MLB Power Rankings

Bucs escape the cellar... for now.

Pittsburgh Pirates v Milwaukee Brewers Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

It’s still very early in the season, but one sports platform thinks the Pittsburgh Pirates are on an upward trend after a successful run over the first two weeks of the season.

In its latest MLB Power Rankings, Bleacher Report ranked the Bucs at No. 17 after they took four games out of five last week, marking a jump of seven spots after they were ranked No. 24 last week.

B/R supported its ranking with some individual performances over the past week, most notably that of Wil Crowe and Michael Chavis.

Crowe has solidified himself as one of the main cogs in the Pirates bullpen this season, tossing 9.2 shutout innings while limiting opponents to just three hits. In addition, Crowe leads the team with ten strikeouts and is second on the team in WHIP with a 0.72 mark.

Meanwhile, Chavis is hitting .500 with three extra base hits and a team-leading six RBI. He played a pivotal role in the Pirates’ wins over the Nats on Saturday and Sunday, going 5-for-8 at the plate with a triple and two RBI.

After failing to spark production during Spring Training, Chavis has earned a spot in the starting lineup with his recent performance.

B/R also mentioned the extensions of Ke’Bryan Hayes and Bryan Reynolds, and called Jose Quintana “a nice scrapheap addition to the rotation.”

Across the NL Central, the Cincinnati Reds experienced a monster set-back, falling 16 places to No. 30; the Milwaukee Brewers come in at No. 15, while the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals take the No. 7 and 9 spots, respectively.