In his first offseason as general manager, A.J. Preller wasted no time in completely reworking the San Diego Padres roster. A flurry of moves saw him add big names like Matt Kemp, Justin Upton, Wil Myers, Derek Norris, Will Middlebrooks, James Shields, and Craig Kimbrel. The jury is still out on the validity of these moves in the long run, but the early returns for the club have been promising.
A 4-2 record from the Padres this week has them tied with the Los Angeles Dodgers for first place in the NL West and tied with the New York Mets for the best run differential in the National League. The offense has seen the biggest improvement, as San Diego's team wRC+ of 121 is nearly 40 points better than its mark of 82 in 2014. If this success continues, Preller deserves a lot of credit for turning the team into a contender in just one offseason. Here's a look at the rest of the NL West:
Arizona Diamondbacks (8-7, 1.5 GB)
The week that was: It was a nice week last week for the Diamondbacks, who took three out of four against the Giants in San Francisco before going home and splitting a pair against the Texas Rangers in their first interleague games of the year.
Upcoming Schedule: Next week brings the final six of an eight-game homestand. They'll play three games against the Pittsburgh Pirates before hosting three more against the Colorado Rockies.
Disabled list: RHP Bronson Arroyo (60-day, Tommy John surgery), LHP Patrick Corbin (15-day, Tommy John surgery), C Oscar Hernandez (15-day, hand), RHP David Hernandez (15-day, Tommy John surgery), C Gerald Laird (60-day, back), 3B Jake Lamb (15-day, foot), RHP Matthew Stites (15-day, arm soreness)
Player of the week: A.J. Pollock
It was a great week last week for Pollock, who slashed .480/.481/.680 in 27 plate appearances, good enough for a 219 wRC+. Pollock also added two doubles, a home run, seven runs scored, and two stolen bases to help the Diamondbacks climb above .500.
Colorado Rockies (8-7, 1.5 GB)
The week that was: After a strong start to the 2015 season, the Rockies sputtered last week. The club was swept by the Dodgers in a three-game series in Los Angeles, then lost the first two against the Padres before finally getting their one and only win of the week on Wednesday.
Upcoming Schedule: The Rockies will play the last of a four-game set against the Padres before hosting the Giants for three and traveling to Arizona for their first three games of the year against the Diamondbacks.
Disabled list: RHP Tyler Chatwood (60-day, Tommy John surgery), IF Charlie Culberson (60-day, lumbar disc), RHP David Hale (15-day, oblique), RHP LaTroy Hawkins (15-day, biceps)
Player of the week: Charlie Blackmon
A rough week for the club left them without a lot of strong options for player of the week. Blackmon is the winner here by virtue of being the only player on the roster who had an above-average week without missing any games. Chuck Nazty posted a .261/.320/.609 slash line across 25 PA and added a double, two triples, and a home run, good enough for a 136 wRC+.
Los Angeles Dodgers (9-5, 0 GB)
The week that was: It was a light week of action for the Dodgers, who played only five games. First, they swept the Rockies in three games at home, then traveled to AT&T Park where they have lost the first two games in a three-game series against the Giants.
Upcoming Schedule: Next week will see the Dodgers play seven games in seven days. They'll finish up their series with the Giants, head to San Diego for three games with the Padres at Petco park, then return home for three more games with the Giants.
Disabled list: RHP Brandon Beachy (60-day, Tommy John surgery), RHP Kenley Jansen (15-day, foot), RHP Brandon League (15-day, shoulder), LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (15-day, shoulder), RHP Chris Withrow (60-day, Tommy John surgery)
Player of the week: Howie Kendrick
With all the star power residing on the Dodger roster, Kendrick is a guy who is easy to forget. A few more weeks like this will make it a little tougher. In 20 PA, Kendrick slashed .368/.400/.842, a 247 wRC+, with three doubles and two home runs.
San Diego Padres (10-6, 0 GB)
The week that was: The Padres took two out of three at Wrigley Field against the Chicago Cubs, then traveled to Coors Field where they won the first two of a four-game set against the Rockies.
Upcoming Schedule: San Diego will play the fourth game of their series against the Rockies, then head home to host the Dodgers and the Houston Astros for three games apiece.
Disabled list: C Tim Federowicz (60-day, knee), RHP Josh Johnson (15-day, Tommy John surgery), RHP Ian Kennedy (15-day, hamstring), LHP Cory Luebke (60-day, Tommy John surgery), OF Melvin Upton Jr. (15-day, foot)
Player of the week: Derek Norris
Norris was great on both sides of the ball last week, posting a .391/.391/.609 line with five doubles in just 23 PA, good enough for a 185 wRC+. He was also superb defensively, throwing out several runners on the bases and making guys think twice about trying to advance on pitches in the dirt.
San Francisco Giants (6-10, 4 GB)
The week that was: San Francisco's rough start continued this week as they lost three out of four at home against the Diamondbacks. Their last two games, however, have been more promising, as they've taken the first two in a three-game series at home against the rival Dodgers.
Upcoming Schedule: Buster Posey and friends will finish up their home series with the Dodgers before traveling to Coors Field for three against the Rockies. Then it's off to Los Angeles for three more with the Dodgers.
Disabled list: RHP Matt Cain (15-day, flexor tendon), RHP Erik Cordier (15-day, forearm), 1B Travis Ishikawa (15-day, back), RHP Jake Peavy (15-day, back), OF Hunter Pence (15-day, forearm)
Player of the week: Brandon Crawford
After getting off to a slow start in 2015, Crawford took big steps toward erasing those troubles last week. The shortstop slashed .333/.455/.722 with a double and two home runs across 22 PA, a 224 wRC+.