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NL West represents well on NL All-Star roster

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Despite having two of the worst teams in the National League, the NL West will be well represented in next Tuesday's All-Star Game in St. Louis. Five (one-third) of the National League's teams placed just their one obligitory All-Star on the team, and none of those five teams came from the NL West.

Not bad for an oft ignored and chided division, sans Los Angeles, especially considering the fans voted in exactly zero NL West starters. Note that Brad Hawpe could start if Raul Ibanez cannot play, and Ibanez isn't going to push it. Justin Upton and to a lesser degree Hunter Pence will provide stiff competition for Brandon.

Eleven divisional players are guaranteed to be on the NL roster of 33 players - the NL East has 11 and the NL Central has 10 despite having an additional team. The final roster slot will be voted on by the fans. Vote here by Thursday at 2PM MDT. None of the five possibilities are from the NL Central, and in fact, the majority of the choices come from your very own NL West. Shane Victorino and Christian Guzman are east coast names with All-Star appearances under their belt already, so they are legitimate threats to give the NL East the most All-Stars with 12.

But if voters are paying attention, the 33rd NL All-Star really deserves to come from the NL West:

Name Team Avg HR RBI wOBA OPS+ WAR
Pablo Sandoval SF .333 12 44 .403 149 2.7
Mark Reynolds AZ .269 24 61 .394 134 2.4
Matt Kemp LA .305 10 44 .371 123 3.5
Shane Victorino PHI .300 5 35 .357 112 1.3
Cristian Guzman WAS .318 3 21 .328 101 0.9

My vote goes for Sandoval, though I wouldn't complain if Reynolds or Kemp got in. Just PLEASE not Victorino or Guzman - and that's not an "NL West" bias. Maybe if Kemp is selected, it will convince Joe Torre to quit batting him eighth.

Huston Street may slide in as an injury replacement, but in addition to Colorado's current All-Stars Brad Hawpe and Jason Marquis, the latter of which Erik Manning at FanGraphs protests as an All-Star (but no worries - he wanted Ubaldo Jimenez instead), here are the division's other nine guaranteed All-Stars:


Arizona:

W-L ERA WHIP K BB
2009 - Dan Haren 8-5 2.16 0.83 119 15

AVG OBP SLG
2009 - Justin Upton .300 .378 .540



Los Angeles:

W-L ERA WHIP K BB
2009 - Chad Billingsley 9-4 3.14 1.20 115 51

W-L ERA WHIP K BB
2009 - Jonathan Broxton 6-0 2.72 0.86 65 16

AVG OBP SLG
2009 - Orlando Hudson .287 .355 .416


San Diego:

W-L ERA WHIP K BB
2009 - Heath Bell 3-1 1.49 1.05 40 15

AVG OBP SLG
2009 - Adrian Gonzalez .263 .407 .562


San Francisco:

W-L ERA WHIP K BB
2009 - Tim Lincecum 9-2 2.23 1.05 141 30

W-L ERA WHIP K BB
2009 - Matt Cain 9-2 2.48 1.23 88 44

Other News:

Big move: Scott Hairston was traded to Oakland for minor league pitchers Ryan Webb, Craig Italiano and a PTBNL. Rejoice! We won't have to face Hairston for several years, though it is now stange Hairston and Matt Holliday, both principal in this game, will be manning the same outfield. However, as Ken Rosenthal suggests, this trade might actually open the door for Holliday to be traded. Hairston was surprised and disappointed, Dave Cameron does not approve, and GasLampBall isn't happy. San Diego's starting outfield is now Chase Headley, Tony Gwynn Jr and Kyle Blanks, with Will Venable as the chief backup.

Reality Check: In losing three of four series, two to divisional foes, one would think the Rockies have lost considerable ground in the playoff race recrently. Au contraire! The Rox' 5-5 record in their past 10 is tied for best in the NL West; moreover, no team with a better record in the NL did any better than 5-5 over their past 10 games.

A full NL West Report after the jump.

NL West Report

Arizona (33-49, 5th, W2, 19 GB)

Last Week: 1-2 @ Reds, 2-1 @ Rockies. The D-Backs are only 3-7 in their past 10, but two of those wins came in consecutive games against the Rox over the weekend.

This Week: 3 game home series vs Padres, 4 game home series vs Marlins.

News: Arizona is making progress in negotiations with 1st rounder Bobby Borchering and hope to sign him this month.

Dan Haren will not be traded. Good idea.

Arizona is scouting the Red Sox in hopes of finding a match for a Chad Tracy trade.

Yusmeiro Petit was activated in the only DL move of the week.

Arizona Diamondbacks Injuries

15-Day

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Eric Byrnes hand 06/26/2009
Chris Snyder lower-back 06/21/2009

60 Day DL / Out for the season

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Tom Gordon hamstring 05/04/2009
Conor Jackson pneumonia 05/12/2009
Brandon Webb shoulder 04/07/2009

Star-divide

Los Angeles (48-28, 1st, L2)

Last Week: 2-1 vs Rockies, 2-1 @ Padres. Los Angeles allowed thrice the runs in the San Diego series at Petco than their home series vs the Rockies but still pulled out a series win in both. Go figure.

This Week: 3 game road series @ Mets, 3 game road series @ Brewers. No one has less road losses than the Dodgers, so finishing on the road isn't a huge deal, but at least they are against contenders.

News: Some dude with ridiculous hair started on Friday. I guess it's a big deal. He did not start yesterday due to sore legs, and is 1-7 with a solo home run since his return.

Buster Olney suggests a trade involving Javier Vazquez and Juan Pierre. Such a trade would bolster the Dodgers' rotation and get a big contract off the bench. Too good to be true for sure.

Perhaps a decent rotation bolstering move would be to just call up Jason Schmidt, who had another solid start in AAA last week.

Joe Beimel wants to go back to Los Angeles. Really? You mean you'd rather be on MLB's best team than the worst?

Shawn Estes is setting himself up for a forced retirement. The lefty is sick of AAA and has "retired from the minor leagues" but wants desperately to pitch in the majors. He has contacted every MLB team stressing he wants a major league job - the 36 year old was 3-4 with a 3.07 ERA (5.20 tRA) at AAA Albuquerque.

LHP Hong-Chih Kuo was moved to the 60-day DL, while Claudio Vargas was activated from it. Eric Milton went back to the 15-day, while Blake DeWitt was recalled from AAA.

Los Angeles Dodgers Injuries

15-Day

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Eric Milton back 06/28/2009
Will Ohman shoulder 05/28/2009
Jason Schmidt shoulder 03/30/2009
Xavier Paul knee 05/21/2009

60 Day DL / Out for the season

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Doug Mientkiewicz shoulder 04/17/2009
Hong-Chih Kuo elbow 04/30/2009

Star-divide

San Diego (35-46, 4th, L1, 16.5 GB)

Last Week: 1-3 vs Astros. 1-2 vs Dodgers. Perhaps this is the beginning of the Padres' long awaited fade. A 2-5 week at home is a poor way to set up for a 7 game divisional road trip before the All-Star Break, especially with that horrific 12-26 road record. The Pads are just 6 runs behind Washington for the worst run differential in MLB.

This Week: 3 game road series @ Diamondbacks, 4 game road series @ Giants.

News: Despite poor performance on the field and an abominable run differential, the Padres will extend Bud Black's contract. I can't argue - to be within 11 games of .500 with that roster is more than commendable. Former AZ manager Bob Melvin will take an "unspecified job" with San Diego.

Yahoo's Gordon Edes suggests Heath Bell will be the most desired relief pitcher for the deadline, not that this surprises anyone. Bell is making just $1.25mil and has two years of arbitration left. I would love to add Bell, but not at the expense it would require to outbid other teams for the dominant, cheap closer.

Heath Bell

#21 / Pitcher / San Diego Padres

6-3

240

R

R

Sep 29, 1977

W-L ERA WHIP K BB
2009 - Heath Bell 3-1 1.49 1.05 40 15

The sell-off isn't complete with Hairston or even Bell if he is traded. Officials have made it clear that Kevin Kouzmanoff is available, and Seattle may be interested with Adrian Beltre out, though they will wait a couple weeks to pull the trigger. The Padres appear to be open to trading every offensive weapon they have other than Adrian Gonzalzez. They're about to run out.

There was such a buzz at Petco Park for Manny Ramirez' return Friday. Literally. A swarm of bees descended on Petco Park Thursday to delay the game. Corey Brock has video interviews.

Henry Blanco was added to the 15-day DL Sunday with a hamstring injury. Rookie catcher Jose Lobaton will takes his place, replacing Edwin Moreno on the 40-man. Lobaton made his debut yesterday - AT SECOND BASE as a defensive replacement for injured David Eckstein.

San Diego Padres Injuries

Doubtful

Player Injury Type Injury Date
David Eckstein other-excused 07/06/2009

15-Day

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Jake Peavy ankle 06/09/2009
Luke Gregerson shoulder 06/08/2009
Chris Young shoulder 06/15/2009
Nick Hundley wrist 06/18/2009
Brian Giles knee 06/19/2009
Henry Blanco hamstring 07/05/2009

60 Day DL / Out for the season

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Mark Worrell elbow 03/27/2009
Cha Seung Baek forearm 03/30/2009
Shawn Hill elbow 04/26/2009
Cliff Floyd shoulder 06/18/2009

Star-divide

San Francisco (44-37, 2nd, L1, 7.5 GB)

Last Week: 2-2 @ Cardinals, 2-1 vs Astros. The Giants won the first two games in both series and now have the second best run differential in the NL. It's getting harder and harder to write them off despite their joke offense. In the past week, they've improved their playoff odds by 10% yet are still projected to finish with two less wins than Colorado.

This Week: 3 game home series vs Marlins, 4 game home series vs Padres.

News: Tim Lincecum has been dominant. Too dominant. Andrew Baggarly points out that the Giants cost themselves an additional arbitration year with the Cy Young Award winner when promoting him a month early in their non-contending 2007 season. Since Lincecum will be up for a huge payday with his performance, an additional arbitration year could cost the Giants a lot of money...and perhaps Lincecum himself if they fall out of contention in the next few years. Lincecum beat out Aaron Cook and Jason Hammel for NL Pitcher of the month in June. Frankly, he deserved it much more.

Tim Lincecum

#55 / Pitcher / San Francisco Giants

5-11

170

L

R

Jun 15, 1984

W-L ERA WHIP K BB
2009 - Tim Lincecum 9-2 2.23 1.05 141 30

Ryan Sadowski has had a very good start to his MLB career, and he has one perso to thank for getting him his break in the majors: his mother.

The Giants are not interested in Jermaine Dye or Victor Martinez due to the necessity of including Madison Bumgarner in the trade package. However, they are rumored to have discussions with Pittsburgh regarding Freddy Sanchez and Adam LaRoche.

Kevin Pichardo was added to the 15-day DL with a shoulder injury early last week after coming off his 50-game suspension for steroids. Randy Johnson left his start yesterday with a strained shoulder and his MRI results are unknown. Pablo Sandoval is tore off the skin on his right knee while sliding into home plate Saturday and sat out Sunday's game with an additional bruise. He is expected to play today..

San Francisco Giants Injuries

Questionable

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Pablo Sandoval knee 07/06/2009

Doubtful

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Randy Johnson shoulder 07/06/2009

60 Day DL / Out for the season

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Noah Lowry ribs 03/27/2009
Kelvin Pichardo shoulder 06/28/2009
Joe Martinez concussion 04/10/2009