Examining The Most Contested Division in the National League
In the MLB’s American League the East Division is living up to its reputation as one of the most contested divisions in the league with the New York Yankees sitting on top of the division with the Boston Red Sox only one game behind and the Baltimore Orioles only 3.5 games behind. The National League also has a hotly contested division. In the West Division there are currently three teams tied for first place, the Arizona Diamondbacks, Colorado Rockies and the defending World Series Champions the San Francisco Giants. The San Diego Padres are only 4.5 games behind those three teams. The NL West may rival the AL East as the most hotly contested division in all of professional baseball.
Each of these team in the NL West has a legitimate chance at taking the division. And with trade rumors begging to fly each of these teams are beginning to develop a road map to taking the NL West division.
The thing about the D-backs is on paper they are not that great of team but are instead an average to slightly above average baseball squad. They have a .251 batting average, which is literally right in the middle of the rankings (15th), 17th place in knocking the ball out of the park and are last in stolen bases. The Diamondbacks have a lot of improving to do through trades if they are going to hang on to the NL West.
The Rockies are arguably the best all around team in the NL West and one of the biggest surprises of this season. The Rockies may not feel too good about losing to the Giants yesterday, but they are still 6-4 on their last 10 games. While they have a solid record when playing at home, the Rockies struggle when playing outside of Colorado with a 11-13 on the road record. If they can get their road woes in check they could very well be the team that takes this division and even makes a run at a pennant.
San Francisco Giants
The defending World Series Champions have found the landscape of their division very different this time out. This team was criticized for not making many big moves during the offseason and instead took a “if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it mentality” when changing the team between their World Series win and the start of the season. However, the rest of the teams in their division have improved greatly and are now giving the Giants the prospect that they may not even make the playoffs let alone 2-pete. While it is too early to panic, this team seems like it will most likely continue to try and get it done with what tools they have. This could leave many Giants fans looking back and talking about what this team should have done come playoff time.
San Diego Padres
The Padres are the team in the NL West that is still contending that are in the roughest shape. They have many pitching woes, Chase Headley is playing hard ball on negotiations which is distracting the team from playing baseball and have been relatively unhealthy this season. A lot of things have to come together for this team just to catch up with the other three leader in this division.