In my opinion, this team has one of the best 1-2 punches at SP in the NL. 22 game winner Brandon Webb and K guy Dan Haren put out dominating performance after dominating performance last season. Prospect Max Scherzer is also projected to get innings either as a pen arm or in the starting rotation. Arizona's pitching seems to be in place but the real key to their success will be in the offense. Losing 40 HR guy Adam Dunn, along with role-player Orlando Hudson, will drastically change the complexion of the lineup. OF's Justin Upton and Chris B. Young will need to step up their batting averages in order to develop any substantial rallies in the regular season. Overall I like this team. I feel as if they are one crazy looking dread-locked man away from winning 90-95 games.
3. San Fransisco Giants 79-83
This team will make improvements from last season. Adding a veteran presence of Randy Johnson in with CY Young winner Tim Lincecum and fireballer Matt Cain will settle the young guys in to be even more successful in big spots. Lincecum, according to reports, is virtually unhittable in live pitching sessions in spring training thus far so it will be interesting to see if he can repeat the tremendous success he had last season. Rookie utility man Pablo Sandoval can play all over, and is bound provide support for Aaron Rowand and Fred Lewis in the lineup. The offense does not appear too threatening on paper, but the superior staff should help this team through rough spots in the schedule, and should ultimately lead to a better year than last year.
4. San Diego Padres 70-92
Even after losing stud LF Matt Holliday to Oakland this offseason, this team has power. Between Brad Hawpe, Garret Atkins, and a healthy Troy Tulowitzki, the Rockies can put up some big time run totals, especially at Coors Field. The big set back for these guys is the staff. In a division with so many dominating pitchers it will be difficult to contend on the road with anytime simply because Colorado's staff can't stand tall with the Arizonas and the SanFrans of the world. Losing Jeff Francis for the year to surgery is a huge blow. Now, the staff is headed by the very raw Ubaldo Jimenez; who's stuff is electric but has no idea where his pitches will end up (i.e. Daniel Cabrera). Ultimately, this team's lineup isn't too shabby but they simply don't have a Lincecum, a Peavy, or a Webb. Maybe next year Rox.