Continuing with my March assignment for the United Cardinals Bloggers, it’s my National League West Predictions blog. This could be one of the most watched divisions in baseball. I think it could be one of the best.
1. Los Angeles Dodgers – Not my favorite team due to the attitude of some of their players, but I know good baseball when I see it and it is happening in Chavez Ravine. Clayton Kershaw is one of the best pitchers in baseball. The additions of Jimmy Rollins and Howie Kendrick up the middle improve this team both at the plate and in the field. I just hope they have enough pitching and my pick for NL comeback player of the year, Brandon McCarthy should help.
2. San Diego Padres (WC) – I think the Padres are a lot closer to the Dodgers than most people do. I think these two teams will be fighting at the top of the division all season. The Matt Kemp acquisition was brilliant in keeping him in the same division. He should be back in form and is my early pick for NL MVP. Add Justin Upton and Wil Myers to that outfield and the Padres should be very much improved. Oh yeah, their rotation is pretty dang good also, being led by newcomer James Shields.
3. San Francisco Giants (WC) – The Giants are going to squeak into the playoffs. Maybe even by default. They have enough pitching to survive the fight in the West. I also believe that Joe Panik will have a big year for them. He will step up until Hunter Pence returns from injuries. I think Casey McGhee will be an outstanding replacement from the Panda dude. He may even be better. Other guys will need to step it up for this prediction to come true but I have a feeling the team by the bay can figure it out.
4. Arizona Diamondbacks – I think the DBacks will be exciting to watch. But exciting doesn’t always mean that they will win more games than they lose. Their pitching will have to step up. Paul Goldschmidt is a really good player on not that great of team. Adding Mark Trumbo and hopefully letting Cuban import Yasmany Tomas learn in the majors brings that excitement that’ll cause me to flip to see a few of their late games.
5. Colorado Rockies – Not enough pitching and there are rumors that you want to trade your two best players. This is Rockies baseball. If they keep all their good players like Justin Morneau, Charlie Blackmon, and Nolan Arenado healthy, they may not finish at the bottom of this division. I just think we will see Troy Tulowitzki in some American League jersey before the trade deadline.
Another wacky division in baseball is the National League West. Many will miss a lot of these late games but I suggest you check the highlights. It will get interesting and another reason why they play the games. Please come back tomorrow for my postseason picks and awards.