Welcome back for the third edition of the NL West Report, where we give the proper amount of time and attention to the teams residing west of the Mississippi, specifically the abundantly handsome Colorado Rockies.
The Rockies are top dogs in the NL West thanks to a successful California road trip where they won four out of their six games. The rest of the division failed to keep up as every team besides the Rockies recorded a .500 record or worse since last Friday.
The Padres this week: 2-5
After a surprisingly solid 4-2 record in their second week, the Padres crashed back down to earth in a week where they lost five straight. It all started when they headed down to Atlanta where they helped the Braves break in their new digs at SunTrust Park. The Padres were gracious guests, losing all four games thanks to their offense only scoring ten runs over the four game stretch. They were able to bounce back upon returning home to San Diego with a 2-1 series win over Arizona.
One of the lone bright spots in the week came from former Rockie Jhoulys Chacin, who threw eight shutout innings while only giving up three hits and walking one against the Diamondbacks. Unlike his days in Colorado, Chacin is enjoying the benefit of a pitcher friendly park where has yet to surrender a run over 142⁄3 innings of work. Outside of Petco Park is another story as he is the owner of a 12.96 road ERA.
The Dodgers this week: 2-4
The Dodgers started and ended their week at .500 after splitting a four game series with the Diamondbacks and a quick two game set with the Rockies. Two of the three victories by way of their surprisingly temperamental ace Clayton Kershaw who picked up two victories after giving up only three runs over 15.1 innings of work between the two games.
One of the minor causes for concern in Los Angeles this past week was the continued bad luck with injuries. One day after getting reinstated from the 10-day DL, left-handed pitcher Rich Hill went back on the disabled list due to the same blister issue. Two days later Logan Forsythe and Rob Segedin both landed on the DL with right big toe injuries, with Forsythe breaking his toe after getting hit by a Kyle Freeland pitch.
The Diamondbacks this week: 3-4
After starting the season on fire at the plate, the Diamondbacks cooled off this week on their trips to some of the more pitcher friendly parks in the league. They were outscored 15-5 in their first two losses against the Dodgers but came back with narrow victories on Sunday and Monday thanks to solid pitching from Taijuan Walker and home runs from Jake Lamb and Chris Ianetta. After an 11-run outburst in the first game of the series, Arizona couldn’t hit their way out of a wet paper bag it he next two games. Ace Zach Grenkie pitched a masterful eight innings, allowing only one run, but the offense came up empty as they fell 1-0.
The Giants this week: 2-3
Another week and another blissful view of the NL West standings where the Rockies reign supreme and the lowly Giants claim their rightful place as cellar dwellers. The main cause of trouble in the Bay Area is the dearth of offense. After putting eight runs against the Rockies last Friday the Giants tallied just four runs in their next four games, two of which shutouts. One of the shutouts happened to be a 5-0 loss where Tyler Chatwood dominated the Giants, only giving up two hits in his nine innings of work.
Things only got worst for San Fransico today when they announced that Madison Bumgarner will be headed to the DL with a shoulder sprain and bruised ribs. The Giants had a day off on Thursday and apparently, and Bumgarner decided to use that time to go dirt biking. A crash caused his injuries. Bumgarner is expected to miss 6-8 weeks. While the Giants are 0-4 in his starts this year, he’s pitched really well, posting a 3.00 ERA, a 2.36 FIP, striking out about a batter an inning. This is undoubtedly a blow to the Giants and their efforts to keep pace with three division rivals who are playing well at the moment.
Standings as of 5/5
The week ahead
After a three-game road series against the Rockies, the Giants will return home for a four game series against the Dodgers. After facing Arizona and Los Angeles last week on the road, the Diamondbacks will get more of the same this week as they play host to both the Padres and Dodgers. It will be all NL West games for the Dodgers this next week, as they hit the road to play three against the Diamondbacks and then four against the Giants. The Padres will play host to Giancarlo Stanton and Miami Marlins before heading to Arizona for a four game set.