Dodgers Projected To Win NL West In 2016
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Despite their deep pockets, three consecutive National League West division titles to their name and a talented roster, the Los Angeles Dodgers are hardly the main attraction in their division at present time.

The Arizona Diamondbacks made quite the splash by stealing Zack Greinke from the Dodgers — and potentially San Francisco Giants — then added to their rotation by trading for Shelby Miller.

San Francisco bolstered their pitching staff by signing Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija.

The Dodgers meanwhile have experienced arguably the most unique and frustrating offseason in Major League Baseball history.

A trade for Aroldis Chapman fell apart due to an alleged domestic violence incident, and an agreement with Hisashi Iwakuma came undone after a failed physical.

Iwakuma quickly reversed course and re-signed with the Seattle Mariners, while the Cincinnati Reds traded Chapman to the New York Yankees on Monday in exchange for four prospects.

Although the Dodgers have had a forgettable offseason and have multiple roster needs to address, they are predicted to win the NL West next season, via ESPN’s David Schoenfield:

Los Angeles Dodgers

2015: 92-70, plus-72 run differential, lost in division series to Mets

Projected 2016 record from FanGraphs: 95-67

2015 payroll: $291 million

Projected 2016 payroll from Baseball-Reference: $205.6 million

Not only are the Dodgers projected to win a fourth straight NL West title, but a 95-win season would be the club’s best record since they reached that same number of wins in 2009. The projections call for the Giants to finish in second place, going 87-75.

San Francisco won 84 games last season and 88 in 2014 — the year of their last World Series title. The Giants have of course made a habit of winning the World Series in even-numbered years, which makes the 2016 season one to watch.

As for the Diamondbacks, they are predicted to finish in third place in the NL West with a 79-83 record. Should that hold true, the additions of Greinke and Miller would not amount to a better record than what the club posted in 2015.

While the Dodgers will be without Greinke, a more experienced Kiké Hernandez, improved Joc Pederson and Yasiel Puig, and Corey Seager assuming a full-time role beginning Opening Day, could help offset the loss.