It’s Opening Day 2014, with the National League West looking to keep up with the Los Angeles Dodgers, who put together a huge second half to run off and hide with the division crown—their first since winning back-to-back division titles in 2008-09.
The Arizona Diamondbacks were the only other team in the division to even hit the break-even mark at 81-81 last season, 11 games behind the Dodgers, while the San Francisco Giants collapsed to 76 wins during their World Series title defense.
The San Diego Padres also won 76 games while the Colorado Rockies faded to 74.
The Dodgers are the new New York Yankees; the first team other than the Yanks to have baseball’s highest payroll since the Baltimore Orioles in 1998 at nearly $235.3 million.
There are old faces in new places, with veterans Dan Haren and Chris Perez joining the Dodgers, Michael Morse and Tim Hudson going to San Francisco, Bronson Arroyo and Mark Trumbo joining the D-backs, Josh Johnson and Joaquin Benoit heading to San Diego and Brett Anderson and Justin Morneau now donning Rockies purple.
With that, here’s a quick look at the NL West, in inverse order of predicted finish: