While the N.L. Central and East races should come down to the final week of the season, the National League West race, barring something unforeseen like a meteor strike, could be over by July.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Division Champions: -1000
Regular Season Wins: 101.5
No team is expected to win their division more easily than the Dodgers. And that’s because no team is as dominant inside their division with L.A. the winners of the West for seven straight years. The problem in L.A. is that it’s been 32 years since they last won the World Series. But this team is loaded and primed for another run at a title.
Two of the top three MVP favorites are in the lineup, in Cody Bellinger and new right fielder Mookie Betts. And in the rotation, they have Cy Young winners Clayton Kershaw and David Price, and a probable future Cy Young winner in Walker Buehler.
Division Champions: +950
Regular Season Wins: 84.5
Everyone else in the division is playing for 2nd place and a shot at a wildcard berth, and right now Arizona looks to be in first in line for that chance.
A good rotation got even better with the addition of Madison Bumgarner. The Diamondbacks have a gold glove shortstop in Nick Ahmed, a rising star in Ketel Marte, and a new offensive weapon in Starling Marte (no relation to Ketel).
San Diego Padres
Division Champions: +1100
Regular Season Wins: 82.5
Fernando Tatis, Jr. is fully healthy and ready to go, and it’s amazing to think he just turned 21 in January. And how is it possible as Manny Machado begins his ninth season in the Majors that he is still just 27? Even with an overpaid Eric Hosmer at first base, this lineup is fun.
However, to hit the over on 82.5 wins this team would need a 13 game improvement from last season. With better health, better play, and more maturity, it certainly could happen.
Division Champions: +7000
Regular Season Wins: 73.5
It feels like forever ago when the Rockies challenged the Dodgers for the division title, only to lose the tiebreaker. In reality it was just 2018.
Can Kyle Freeland get back to looking like a Cy Young candidate? He was awful last year. German Marquez is still great at the top of the rotation and Jon Gray is solid. Trevor Story and Nolan Arenado are legit superstars who seem to do everything right. But after Arenado in the clean up spot, the lineup drops way off.
73.5 wins feels a little low. But if things go south it’s possible Arenado gets dealt. And then 73.5 will feel a little high.
San Francisco Giants
Division Champions: +10000
Regular Season Wins: 68.5
Regression is the expectation for the Giants in 2020. They have a lineup filled with guys on the wrong side of 30 and starting rotation that’s just as long in the tooth. And that wouldn’t be so bad if the players in question weren’t so average.
Kevin Gausman is the team’s best starting pitcher, and he’s never once finished a season with more wins than losses.