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2024 NL West Preview: Can Anyone Dethrone Dodgers?

Despite not making the World Series again, the 2023 Los Angeles Dodgers won their 10th National League West title in the last 11 years. If the MLB baseball news and chatter are correct, the Dodgers have constructed one of the most talented teams in history to try and win just their second World Series title since 1988.

But the division isn’t a cakewalk anymore. The Arizona Diamondbacks are coming off a World Series appearance, the San Diego Padres and San Francisco Giants have solid rosters and the Colorado Rockies are, well … yeah, they stink.

2024 NL West Preview: Can Anyone Dethrone Dodgers?
Shohei Ohtani - Los Angeles Dodgers | Yoshitaka Nishi / Yomiuri / The Yomiuri Shimbun via AFP

 

1. Los Angeles Dodgers

The biggest question in the NL West is whether the Dodgers get what they paid for or overspent on talent destined to underperform. And boy, did they spend big this offseason. The team committed over $1 billion to just a few players. While the Dodgers’ spending spree isn’t the latest MLB news, it is the biggest story in the lead-up to the regular season.

LA signed Shohei Ohtani and Yoshinobu Yamamoto, traded for Tyler Glasnow and added Teoscar Hernandez.


Even after spending more than the GDP of nine of the poorest countries in the world, the roster is not perfect. They don’t have a great shortstop and their rotation still has a few gaps. Still, with the wealth of talent on the roster, it’s hard to see a world where the Dodgers don’t cruise to the NL West title and make a run for the World Series. LA might even be worth a bet online to break the record for most wins in a season set by the 2001 Seattle Mariners.

  • Odds to Win Division: -450
  • Odds to Win NL Pennant: +190
  • Odds to Win World Series: +350

 

2. Arizona Diamondbacks

The Arizona Diamondbacks have established themselves as a formidable team. They showcase a blend of athleticism, speed and power that complements their robust pitching rotation. This unique combination positions them favorably for another competitive season. The synergy between their batting and pitching is a significant aspect of their potential success. Following his impressive performance as the National League Rookie of the Year, Corbin Carroll is anticipated to bolster the team’s offensive capabilities significantly.

Last year, the D-backs demonstrated they could hold their own against top-tier teams, notably not backing down from challenges posed by the Dodgers. Their fearless attitude and competitive spirit were evident, suggesting that a 2024 National League Championship Series rematch against Los Angeles would attract widespread attention and be deemed essential viewing for baseball fans.

The primary concern remains whether their offense can consistently match the high standards set by their pitchers. However, the continued rise of young stars like Carroll provides a promising outlook, suggesting that the D-backs are well-equipped to maintain their previous season’s achievements, if not exceed them.

  • Odds to Win Division: +750
  • Odds to Win NL Pennant: +1600
  • Odds to Win World Series: +3500

 

3. San Francisco Giants

The San Francisco Giants will rely heavily on their pitching to navigate the season. Logan Webb, who has established himself as one of the league’s most reliable starters, is expected to lead the Giants’ rotation once again. Despite introducing new hitters, the team’s offense may experience fluctuations and challenges, increasing the reliance on its pitchers to keep games within reach.

The Giants made a strategic move with the eleventh-hour acquisition of reigning Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell, which could significantly strengthen their pitching lineup and unexpectedly make it a formidable force. This addition suggests that despite initial uncertainties, San Francisco’s pitching staff could emerge as one of the more solid assemblies in the league.

While I foresee the Giants contending for a playoff spot as early as July, they face tough competition within their division, particularly from the Arizona Diamondbacks and Los Angeles Dodgers. This intense rivalry could mean that, despite their strengths and improvements, the Giants might just fall short of making it into the postseason, ending up as spectators rather than participants.

  • Odds to Win Division: +1000
  • Odds to Win NL Pennant: +2000
  • Odds to Win World Series: +4000

 

4. San Diego Padres

In 2024, the dynamics within the Padres seem poised for a shift, unlike what has been observed in recent seasons. Traditionally reliant on their bullpen and starting rotation, the team is expected to lean more heavily on its offensive capabilities. The acquisition of Dylan Cease adds depth, yet questions linger regarding the overall strength and consistency of the pitching staff. Nonetheless, the area where the Padres are anticipated to excel is their ability to generate runs, setting them apart from previous seasons.

With an enhanced focus on offense, the Padres could very well find themselves vying for a position in the playoffs, particularly as the wild-card spot contention heats up in the season’s final week. This represents a significant change in approach and could redefine the team’s identity and strategy on the field.

The shift towards a more offense-driven team is crucial, especially considering the uncertainties surrounding their pitching. If the Padres harness their scoring potential effectively, they could become a formidable force in the league, challenging expectations and making a strong case for postseason action. The Padres are a tempting MLB bet to make the postseason.

  • Odds to Win Division: +1000
  • Odds to Win NL Pennant: +2000
  • Odds to Win World Series: +4000

 

5. Colorado Rockies

While potentially eyeing the No. 1 selection in the upcoming MLB Draft, the Colorado Rockies are not devoid of talent, especially compared to teams like the Oakland Athletics and the Chicago White Sox. Despite projections suggesting that Kris Bryant may not play 140 games this season, his presence is still expected to significantly enhance the Rockies’ offensive lineup.

A key player to watch is Nolan Jones, who is on an upward trajectory and will likely represent Colorado at the All-Star Game in Arlington, Texas. His continued improvement is crucial for the team’s success. Therefore, while the Rockies might be in contention for a top draft pick, their roster’s talent should not be underestimated. Key players like Bryant and Jones are anticipated to contribute meaningfully to the team’s performance.

  • Odds to Win Division: +15000
  • Odds to Win NL Pennant: +25000
  • Odds to Win World Series  +50000

 

 

Questions Of The Day

Who is favored to win the World Series?


The LA Dodgers at +350 have the best MLB odds to win the World Series, followed by the Atlanta Braves at +450.

Who has the biggest contract in the MLB this season?


Shohei Ohtani became the highest-paid MLB player ever when he signed with the Dodgers for 10 years with an annual salary of $70 million.

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