Tis the time of year for MLB projections. Spring training games are right around the corner and with that comes folks from all walks of life trying to predict how the season will go.

Major entities such as USA Today (win total projection), SportingNews Yearbook and even Las Vegas {over/under win projection} have the NL West finishing in the following order:

  1. Los Angeles (92) {91.5}
  2. San Francisco (89) {87.5}
  3. Colorado (81) {79.5}
  4. Arizona (74) {78.5}
  5. San Diego (65) {64.5}

They ALL made two(2) errors. Those errors being that the Giants will win the division breaking the Dodgers 4-year run atop the standings and the Diamondbacks will finish third ahead of the Rockies. Here is what my crystal ball calls for:

  1. San Francisco (88)
  2. Los Angeles (87)
  3. Arizona (83)
  4. Colorado (81)
  5. San Diego (62)

Why the belief the Giants will overtake the Dodgers for the division lead?

The pitching rotation of the Giants and a healthy Hunter Pence! Johnny Cueto, Jeff Samardzija, and Matt Moore are all into their second year playing for the Bay Area Giants. The hoopla about the “even year” Giants is gone, although it did not affect Cueto, so the trio that lines up behind ace and  the second best pitcher in baseball Madison Bumgarner, just has to concentrate on winning games instead of staking their claim in continuing a phenomenon. Yes the Dodgers Clayton Kershaw is the one pitcher in the league better than Bumgarner but the edge on every other spot in the rotation goes to the Giants. The one area of the pitching staff the Dodgers had a distinct advantage over the Giants was in the closer role. With the Giants signing Mark Melancon, that advantage is now slim and none (and slim is packing).

Why the belief the Diamondbacks will improve 14-wins over last season and finish third place?

Zack Greinke is my prediction for NL Cy Young Award winner. Paul Goldschmidt, by his standards, had a down year last season. He is only one year removed from being runner-up for the NL MVP. There is nothing to suggest that “Goldy” cannot put himself back into the MVP chatter especially if A.J. Pollock can play 140-150 games at his 2015 level. If Pollock’s Instagram message about being able to hike the double-black-diamond Echo Canyon Summit Trail is true, then his elbow his just fine.

Those are my predictions - bold/different but with strong beliefs. Share your predictions as well and we will see at the end of the season who’s predictions were meatless.

National League West Predictions - Standings and More

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