Monday, April 06, 2009 Pundits Pick Dodgers to Win NL West, As Well

You'll have to trust me on this unless you're an ESPN Insider, but is pro-Dodgers as well. Buster Olney has the Dodgers winning the NL West:

My picks for this year: Division winners -- Rays, Twins, Angels, Phillies, Cubs and Dodgers. Wild-card teams -- Red Sox and Cardinals. And I've got the Rays over the Phillies in the World Series.

Before you get all excited, remember here that Olney picked the Rockies to win the NL West in 2008; five of his six division winner predictions were wrong (he got the Cubs right). One guy who did correctly pick the Dodgers to win the NL West was Keith Law, who has the Dodgers winning the NL West in 2009 as well:

NL West (W / L)
Los Angeles (88 / 74)
Arizona (85 / 77)
San Francisco (78 / 84)
Colorado (78 / 84)
San Diego (65 / 97)

No real surprise here; Manny is worth enough to put the Dodgers over Arizona, whereas without him, Los Angeles would be a second-place club. The Giants were probably one big bat away from being favorites or fringe favorites in this division, maybe a big bat and a good defensive infielder, but they stood pat and are going to play a lot of tight, low-scoring games behind Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Randy Johnson and perhaps Jonathan Sanchez. I may be optimistic on the Padres; if they deal Jake Peavy and dump any of their other veterans, they could zip to 100 losses with a bad second half.