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No team has had a greater stranglehold on its division in recent years than the Los Angeles Dodgers, who've captured the National League West crown in each of the last seven seasons.
Here are the win totals set by oddsmakers for the five NL West teams in 2020:
|Los Angeles Dodgers||37.5|
|San Diego Padres||30.5|
|San Francisco Giants||25.5|
There are very few, if any, weaknesses on this Dodgers team, which looks poised to once again cruise through the regular season. However, 38 wins in 60 games are the equivalent to 103 in a normal campaign. Sure, the Dodgers have a stacked roster, but that's been the case throughout this seven-year stretch of dominance, during which they've reached at least 103 wins just twice.
In what is sure to be a wild Major League Baseball campaign, we can't count on the extremes. A 103-win pace is a lot to ask of a team that will be more focused on winning when it matters this year. It's the under or nothing here.
There's a lot to like about the Diamondbacks, who are fully capable of catching lightning in a bottle and ending the Dodgers' reign. Arizona added Starling Marte and Kole Calhoun during the offseason to one of the league's most potent lineups, headlined by MVP candidate Ketel Marte.
The Diamondbacks have the rotation to match, too. Zac Gallen and Luke Weaver are primed for breakout campaigns, which would be massive from the three and four spots behind Madison Bumgarner and Robbie Ray. The over on Arizona's 31.5 wins is one of my favorite futures bets heading into the 2020 season.
It was a busy offseason for a Padres team that is very much flying under the radar heading into this season. San Diego's young rotation boasts boundless potential with the likes of Chris Paddack, Dinelson Lamet, and Garrett Richards, none of whom will be on an innings limit thanks to the shortened schedule. The rotation will also be backed by one of the league's best bullpens, with new additions Emilio Pagan and Drew Pomeranz joining closer Kirby Yates.
Fernando Tatis Jr. is a superstar in the making and Tommy Pham was a smart addition to a lineup that also contains plenty of experience. The Padres possess both the hitting talent and pitching depth necessary to finish above .500 on the season, with anything less certainly a disappointment.
The Rockies didn't make many moves after stumbling to a 71-win season in 2019 - the equivalent to 26 in a 60-game campaign. That's right where oddsmakers have set Colorado's 2020 win total, which feels a bit ambitious given the state of this roster and the difficulty of the schedule.
There's no doubt the lineup will continue to produce, but it won't matter if the pitching staff can't record outs. The bullpen is among the league's worst and the rotation lacks any real depth, which is especially problematic given the struggles of Colorado's top guys last season. The under is the play.
The Giants will use 2020 to evaluate the talent they have in their system and make important decisions regarding their continued rebuild heading into 2021. San Francisco will try to milk what's left of its veteran arms, while the lineup is a mix of past-their-prime hitters and prospects hoping to stake claim to everyday MLB jobs.
There's just too much that has to go right for this team to truly be competitive in 2020, especially with all 60 games coming against the ultra-competitive NL and AL West. Under 25.5 is certainly in play for the Giants.
Alex Moretto is a sports betting writer for theScore. A journalism graduate from Guelph-Humber University, he has worked in sports media for over a decade. He will bet on anything from the Super Bowl to amateur soccer, is too impatient for futures, and will never trust a kicker. Find him on Twitter @alexjmoretto.