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National League West 2020 Preview

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Can anyone beat the Dodgers?

Divisional Series - Washington Nationals v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Five Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

We continue our 2020 season preview with a look at the National League West. You can read a preview of the National League Eastern Division here and the National League Central Division here.

The Dodgers seem like overwhelming favorites to not only win the division, but the pennant as well. But a rising team in San Diego could present an obstacle, and the Diamondbacks always seem to field a pretty good team.

Arizona Diamondbacks

2019 record: 85-77

2019 pythag: 88-74

2020 ZIPS projection: 31-29

Notable additions: Madison Bumgarner, Kole Calhoun, Junior Guerra, Jon Jay, Starling Marte, Hector Rondon, Stephen Vogt

Notable losses: Matt Andriese, Alex Avila, Jarrod Dyson, Wilmer Flores, Yoshihisa Hirano, Adam Jones, Mike Leake (opted out), T.J. McFarland, Steven Souza, Jr., Taijuan Walker

The Diamondbacks have been a good team, but unable to break through to the upper tier of National League teams in the last three seasons. They hope Madison Bumgarner can anchor their rotation and teach an otherwise young pitching staff how to win. The lineup was middle-of-the-road in nearly every offensive category last year, despite a breakout season from centerfielder Ketel Marte. They were one of the best defensive teams last year and add two former Gold Glove winning outfielders in Starling Marte and Kole Calhoun, although each has lost a step.

Diamondbacks projected starting lineup

Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
CF Starling Marte .295 .342 .503 586 23 2.9
2B Ketel Marte .329 .389 .592 628 32 7.2
3B Eduardo Escobar .269 .320 .511 699 35 3.6
LF David Peralta .275 .343 .461 423 12 1.9
1B Christian Walker .259 .348 .476 603 29 3.0
RF Kole Calhoun .232 .325 .467 632 33 2.4
SS Nick Ahmed .254 .316 .437 625 19 4.3
DH Jake Lamb .193 .323 .353 226 6 0.2
C Carson Kelly .245 .348 .478 365 18 1.7
Bench Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
C Stephen Vogt .263 .314 .390 280 10 1.2
1B Kevin Cron .211 .269 .521 78 6 0.1
IF Ildemaro Vargas .269 .299 .413 211 6 0.7
OF Jon Jay .267 .311 .315 182 0 -0.8
OF Tim Locastro .250 .357 .340 250 1 0.8

Diamondbacks projected pitching staff

Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
LHP Madison Bumgarner 3.90 3.90 207.2 8.8 1.9 2.5
RHP Robbie Ray 4.34 4.29 174.1 12.1 4.3 0.8
RHP Luke Weaver 2.94 3.07 64.1 9.7 2.0 1.6
RHP Zac Gallen 2.81 3.61 80.0 10.8 4.1 2.6
RHP Merrill Kelly 4.42 4.51 183.1 7.8 2.8 0.4
Pit Bullpen ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
RHP Archie Bradley 3.52 3.41 71.2 10.9 4.5 0.9
RHP Junior Guerra 3.55 4.52 83.2 8.3 3.9 1.3
LHP Andrew Chafin 3.76 3.25 52.2 11.6 3.1 0.7
RHP Hector Rondon 3.71 4.96 60.2 7.1 3.0 0.7
RHP Kevin Ginkel 1.48 3.09 24.1 10.4 3.3 0.7
RHP Yoan Lopez 3.41 5.03 60.2 6.2 2.5 0.5

Colorado Rockies

2019 record: 71-91

2019 pythag: 71-91

2020 ZIPS projection: 29-31

Notable additions: Matt Kemp, Tyler Kinley, Chris Owings, James Pazos

Notable losses: Tyler Anderson, Chad Bettis, Ian Desmond (opted out), Jake McGee, Bryan Shaw

Stop me if you’ve heard this before - the Colorado Rockies have some awesome hitters and a dreadful pitching staff. Some of that is Coors Field, but they even had a 4.92 ERA on the road last year. The club released Bryan Shaw and Jake McGee last week, both in the final year of a three-year, $27 million contract, and Wade Davis could be the next cut if he doesn’t improve on his awful performance last year. Trade rumors swirled around Nolan Arenado last off-season, but he will begin this season as the best hitter in the Rockies lineup.

Rockies projected starting lineup

Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
CF David Dahl .302 .353 .524 413 15 0.4
SS Trevor Story .294 .363 .554 656 35 6.1
RF Charlie Blackmon .314 .364 .576 634 32 2.1
3B Nolan Arenado .315 .379 .583 662 41 6.7
DH Daniel Murphy .279 .328 .452 478 13 0.3
1B Ryan McMahon .250 .329 .450 539 24 1.2
2B Garrett Hampson .247 .302 .385 327 8 0.3
LF Sam Hilliard .273 .356 .649 87 7 0.6
C Tony Wolters .262 .337 .329 411 1 1.5
Bench Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
C Drew Butera .163 .229 .233 49 0 -0.4
IF Brendan Rodgers .224 .272 .250 81 0 -0.6
IF Chris Owings .139 .209 .233 196 3 -1.0
OF Matt Kemp .200 .210 .283 62 1 -0.9
OF Raimel Tapia .275 .309 .415 447 9 -0.8

Rockies projected pitching staff

Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
RHP German Marquez 4.76 4.06 174.0 9.1 1.8 3,6
RHP Jon Gray 3.84 4.06 150.0 9.0 3.4 3.6
LHP Kyle Freeland 6.73 5.99 104.1 6.8 3.4 -0.9
RHP Antonio Senzatela 6.71 5.44 124.2 5.5 4.1 -0.9
RHP Jeff Hoffman 6.56 6.80 70.0 87.0 4.4 0.2
Pit Bullpen ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
RHP Wade Davis 8.65 5.56 42.2 8.9 6.1 -1.4
RHP Scott Oberg 2.25 3.54 56.0 9.3 3.7 2.4
RHP Jairo Diaz 4.53 3.70 57.2 9.8 3.0 0.5
RHP Carlos Estevez 3.75 4.13 72.0 10.1 2.9 1.5
LHP James Pazos 1.74 3.70 10.2 8.7 3.5 0.5
RHP Tyler Kinley 3.65 4.92 49.1 8.4 6.6 0.8

Los Angeles Dodgers

2019 record: 106-56

2019 pythag: 107-55

2020 ZIPS projection: 36-24

Notable additions: Mookie Betts, David Price (opted out), Blake Treinen, Alex Wood

Notable losses: David Freese, Jedd Gyorko, Rich Hill, Kenta Maeda, Russell Martin, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Alex Verdugo

The Dodgers were already pretty loaded and they added one of the best players in baseball - Mookie Betts - to their lineup. He should help a defense that was below-average last season, perhaps the only real weakness on the club. The Dodgers smashed a league-best 279 home runs last year, but also had the best pitching staff with a 3.37 ERA and the fewest home runs allowed in the league. A lot could go wrong in a short season, but the Dodgers should be a favorite to win their first championship in over 30 years.

Dodgers projected starting lineup

Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
RF Mookie Betts .293 .391 .524 706 29 6.9
1B Max Muncy .251 .374 .515 589 35 5.7
3B Justin Turner .290 .372 .509 549 27 4.1
CF Cody Bellinger .305 .406 .629 661 47 9.1
DH Joc Pederson .249 .339 .538 514 36 3.2
LF A.J. Pollock .266 .327 .468 342 15 0.2
SS Corey Seager .272 .335 .483 541 19 3.3
C Will Smith .253 .337 .571 196 15 1.7
2B Gavin Lux .240 .305 .400 82 2 0.6
Bench Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
C Austin Barnes .203 .293 .340 242 5 0.2
IF Matt Beaty .265 .317 .458 268 9 0.4
IF Enrique Hernandez .237 .304 .411 460 17 2.2
IF Edwin Rios .277 .393 .617 56 4 0.5
OF Chris Taylor .262 .333 .462 414 12 1.7

Dodgers projected pitching staff

Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
LHP Clayton Kershaw 3.03 3.86 178.1 9.5 2.1 3.1
RHP Walker Buehler 3.26 3.01 182.1 10.6 1.8 2.0
LHP Julio Urias 2.49 3.43 79.2 9.6 3.1 1.4
LHP Alex Wood 5.80 6.38 35.2 7.6 2.3 -0.3
RHP Ross Stripling 3.47 3.47 90.2 9.2 2.0 0.7
Pit Bullpen ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
RHP Kenley Jansen 3.71 3.48 63.0 11.4 2.3 0.0
RHP Pedro Baez 3.10 3.52 69.2 8.9 3.0 0.3
RHP Joe Kelly 4.56 3.78 51.1 10.9 3.9 -0.7
RHP Blake Treinen 4.91 5.14 58.2 9.1 5.7 -0.3
LHP Caleb Ferguson 4.84 5.05 44.2 10.9 5.4 -0.2
RHP Dylan Floro 4.24 3.56 46.2 8.1 2.7 -0.5

San Diego Padres

2019 record: 70-92

2019 pythag: 70-92

2020 ZIPS projection: 32-28

Notable additions: Zach Davies, Trent Grisham, Pierce Johnson, Emilio Pagan, Tommy Pham, Drew Pomeranz

Notable losses: Robbie Erlin, Ian Kinsler, Eric Lauer, Manual Margot, Hunter Renfroe, Luis Urias

The Padres have been building a volcano of hot talent-lava but so far it has been dormant. Fernando Tatis, Jr. is one of the best young hitters in the game, and Manny Machado gives them a 30+ home run hitter, but the Padres scored the third-fewest runs in the league last year. They revamped their outfield, sending Franmil Reyes to the Indians in July, the Manuel Margot and Hunter Renfroe to the Rays in December, getting Tommy Pham and Trent Grisham to play alongside Wil Myers. The starting pitching wasn’t great last year, but there is a lot of depth and if some young pitchers take a step forward, the Padres could begin to look like a contender.

Padres projected starting lineup

Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
SS Fernando Tatis, Jr. .317 .379 .590 372 22 4.1
CF Trent Grisham .231 .328 .410 183 6 0.6
3B Manny Machado .256 .334 .462 661 32 2.6
LF Tommy Pham .273 .369 .450 654 21 3.8
1B Eric Hosmer .265 .310 .425 667 22 -0.2
RF Wil Myers .239 .321 .418 490 18 -0.4
DH Josh Naylor .249 .315 .403 279 8 0.0
2B Jurickson Profar .218 .301 .410 518 20 0.3
C Francisco Mejia .265 .316 .438 244 8 0.6
Bench Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
C Austin Hedges 0.176 0.252 0.311 347 11 -0.7
IF Ty France 0.234 0.294 0.402 201 7 -0.3
IF Jorge Mateo Played in the minors
IF Greg Garcia 0.248 0.364 0.354 372 4 0.9
OF Edward Olivares Played in the minors

Padres projected pitching staff

Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
RHP Chris Paddack 3.33 3.95 140.2 9.8 2.0 2.7
RHP Garrett Richards 8.31 5.75 8.2 11.4 6.2 -0.2
RHP Zach Davies 3.55 4.56 159.2 5.7 2.9 2.6
LHP Joey Lucchesi 4.18 4.17 163.2 8.7 3.1 2.0
RHP Dinelson Lamet 4.07 3.91 73.0 12.9 3.7 0.6
Pit Bullpen ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
RHP Kirby Yates 1.19 1.30 60.2 15.0 1.9 3.0
LHP Drew Pomeranz 4.85 4.59 104.0 11.9 3.8 0.6
RHP Emlio Pagan 2.31 3.30 70.0 12.3 1.7 2.3
LHP Matt Strahm 4.71 4.41 114.2 9.3 1.7 1.3
RHP Craig Stammen 3.29 4.12 82.0 8.0 1.6 1.1
LHP Tim Hill 3.63 3.84 39.2 8.8 2.9 0.7

San Francisco Giants

2019 record: 77-85

2019 pythag: 71-91

2020 ZIPS projection: 27-33

Notable additions: Tyler Anderson, Rob Brantly, Wilmer Flores, Kevin Gausman, Hunter Pence, Drew Smyly, Andrew Triggs

Notable losses: Madison Bumgarner, Kevin Pillar, Buster Posey (opted out), Will Smith, Stephen Vogt

The Giants were a pretty bad team that got some fluky good seasons out of a few players let go by other organizations to cobble together 77 wins. They had the oldest lineup in baseball last year and it got them the second-fewest runs. They’ll have to do without Buster Posey, who decided not to play this year, leaving them with two catchers who played a combined six MLB games last year. Madison Bumgarner, star of the 2014 World Series, has departed, leaving the Giants to hope that big free agents Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija have a litt left in the tank to paper over a rotation full of cast-offs.

Giants projected starting lineup

Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
Pos. Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
RF Mike Yastrzemski .272 .334 .518 411 21 2.8
3B Evan Longoria .254 .325 .437 508 20 2.5
1B Brandon Belt .234 .339 .403 616 17 0.8
DH Hunter Pence .297 .358 .552 316 18 1.6
LF Alex Dickerson .276 .332 .489 190 6 0.7
SS Brandon Crawford .228 .304 .350 560 11 0.2
2B Mauricio Dubon .274 .306 .434 111 4 0.4
C Rob Brantly .000 .000 .000 1 0 0.0
CF Steven Duggar .234 .278 .341 281 4 -0.1
Bench Hitter BA OBA SLG PA HR rWAR
C Tyler Heineman .273 .273 .636 12 1 0.1
1B Pablo Sandoval .268 .313 .507 296 14 1.6
IF Wilmer Flores .317 .361 .487 285 9 0.9
OF Billy Hamilton .218 .289 .275 353 0 0.4
OF Austin Slater .238 .333 .417 192 5 0.6

Giants projected pitching staff

Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
Pit Pitcher ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
RHP Johnny Cueto 5.06 5.71 16.0 7.3 5.1 0.0
RHP Jeff Samardzija 3.52 4.59 181.1 6.9 2.4 3.0
RHP Kevin Gausman 5.72 3.98 102.1 10.0 2.8 -0.7
LHP Drew Smyly 6.24 6.26 114.0 9.5 4.3 -0.2
LHP Tyler Anderson 11.76 7.62 20.2 10.0 4.8 -0.9
Pit Bullpen ERA FIP IP K/9 BB/9 WAR
LHP Tony Watson 4.17 4.81 54.0 6.8 2.0 0.2
RHP Trevor Gott 4.44 3.12 52.2 9.7 2.9 0.2
RHP Tyler Rogers 1.02 2.08 17.2 8.2 1.5 0.7
RHP Sam Coonrod 3.58 5.24 27.2 6.5 4.9 0.4
LHP Wandy Peralta 5.67 6.57 39.2 7.3 3.6 -0.1
RHP Andrew Triggs Did not play

Poll

Who will win the National League West?

This poll is closed

  • 8%
    Arizona Diamondbacks
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    Colorado Rockies
    (0 votes)
  • 76%
    Los Angeles Dodgers
    (19 votes)
  • 16%
    San Diego Padres
    (4 votes)
  • 0%
    San Francisco Giants
    (0 votes)
25 votes total Vote Now