We went from East-To-West for the AL, but we’ll be going West-To-East for the NL, so… who is ready to learn what could go right and wrong in the NL West? And who wants to see some vaguely-related images from Getty, too?
Los Angeles Dodgers
Best-Case Scenario: The season begins in Australia and ends with Commissioner Selig handing the World Series trophy to Magic Johnson (or some other representative of the ownership group) in October. Clayton Kershaw wins CYA.
Worst-Case Scenario: Dingos eat their babies.
Worst-Case Scenario That Could Actually Happen: Injuries. It’s unlikely that a healthy Dodgers team can be beaten in the NL West.
Best-Case Scenario: The Diamondbacks get their vengeance, kick the Dodgers out of their pool, and then make a playoff run.
Worst-Case Scenario: Mark Trumbo and Paul Goldschmidt get their butts kicked by a group of angry kangaroos.
Worst-Case Scenario That Could Actually Happen: Things go horribly wrong, injuries and steps-back to and by key players send the Diamondbacks tumbling into the cellar of the NL West. The Dodgers again celebrate in the Diamondbacks’ pool.
San Diego Padres
Best-Case Scenario: People actually remember that they exist come September. Because, really, the Padres may well be the most anonymous team in baseball, and they are going to have to do well if they are going to change that.
Worst-Case Scenario: You forget the Padres even exist by September.
Worst-Case Scenario That Could Actually Happen: See above.
San Francisco Giants
Best-Case Scenario: The pitching staff is revived as Tim Hudson– now back in the Bay Area- and Ryan Vogelsong have bounce-back years and Tim Lincecum finds his old groove.
Worst-Case Scenario: Godzilla Attack.
Worst-Case Scenario That Could Actually Happen: Pitching isn’t amazing. The lineup isn’t good enough. Another middle-of-the-division finish.
Best-Case Scenario: Justin Morneau becomes his old self in the thin (but humidified) Colorado air, and he joins forces with a healthy Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez to bring back the Blake Street Bombers of old. While the pitching keeps them from being a serious playoff contender, they sure end up being fun to watch.
Worst-Case Scenario: The Colorado Rockies organization ceases to exist, since Todd Helton isn’t around playing for them anymore.
Worst-Case Scenario That Could Actually Happen: They finish in the basement and aren’t particularly fun to watch, either.
Next Time: THE NL CENTRAL