This year’s NL West should be easy to predict the winner. That means that by the end of the season, I’ll probably be completely wrong.
1. Los Angeles Dodgers
Well, the consensus favorite to win the division, some people say win the NL, and some even say the World Series, is the Dodgers. It’s easy to see why when they already have a 2 game lead on 13 of the other teams in the NL and 4 game lead on that last one. I at least agree on the NL West. It’s easy to see why when they have Kershaw, Ryu, and Grienke in their rotation. Puig is an electric talent, even if he runs himself into some outs on the field at times. Their health is going to be the only issue that can hold them back from winning the division. Their outfield is like a piecework quilt at the moment, and that’s without figuring what’s going on with Puig yet. Kershaw made the start in Australia, but will miss Sunday’s start. It looks like it’s just a little injury, but if he’s out for an extended period, that could be really bad for them.
2. San Francisco Giants
Last year’s Giants reminded me of last year’s Nationals. They were a talented team, but they just didn’t put it together and do anything in the regular season. They won the World Series in 2012, but then bombed in 2013. They did pick u Tim Hudson in the offseason, which will help, but they’re mostly relying on their players to bounce back from last year. I think that they will, but they’ll still be out of the playoffs at the end of the year.
3. Arizona Diamondbacks
The Diamondbacks were fighting for the division lead last year with the Dodgers, but in the end, they ended up coming short. In the offseason, they made a few moves, but none that really stuck out to me as one that would launch them up too much in the win column. In the end, it’s going to be another season that they’re at or around .500, and sitting in the middle of the division.
4. San Diego Padres
The Padres have been getting better slowly over the last few years. However, I don’t see them going very far very fast. They might make it up to 3rd, but I mostly think I’ve only got them 4th based on the fact that I think that Giants bounce back. They also didn’t make any moves that wowed me in the offseason, and without that push from ownership and management, I don’t figure their season is going to do much.
5. Colorado Rockies
They have a great core, with Cuddyer, Tulo, and others, but they are going to be stuck in the cellar again. Maybe if they would have taken the Cardinals offer in the offseason, that would be a different story.
Well, that’s how I think all the divisions are going to shake out. Tomorrow, I wrap up all the posts with postseason predictions.