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St. Louis Cardinals' Dylan Carlson (3) is congratulated by teammates Yadier Molina (4) and Paul Goldschmidt after hitting a grand slam during the eighth inning of a baseball against the San Diego Padres game Friday, Sept. 17, 2021, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

MLB: National League Futures By Division

Kyle Barrette

Today we wrap up our baseball preview with the divisional winners in the national league. MLB has approved a universal DH, so that will instantly make the good teams even stronger now that there is not almost an automatic out hitting out of the nine spot. With that said, let’s take a look and see who is going to take the divisions in the national league.

NL East Winner: NY Mets
The home of the reigning defending champions. Not too many people outside Atlanta saw this one coming. This team still remains solid but does have a few free agent holes that still need to be filled in, and they have to now deal with the Mets, who have gone all in and might have the scariest rotation in baseball. The Phillies will remain average and won’t have the pitching or the consistent offense to keep up with Atlanta or New York. Miami has a good young pitching staff but no offense to speak of, and Washington is close to a rebuild. I have the Mets edging out the Braves in this division.

NL Central Winner: St. Louis Cardinals
This will likely be a two-team race exactly like it was last season, except I think the two teams will switch and the Cardinals will take the division. The Reds, like the Phillies, will be average or below average. They lost a big bat in Castalano’s and their pitching has gone downhill. Chicago has entered a rebuild and the Pirates will continue to be the Pirates. Neither will be a threat to the division. 

NL West Winner: LA Dodgers
It’s probably the most entertaining division in baseball here. No one expected the Giants to be as good as they were, and it will likely not happen again. The Dodgers are the Dodgers, and even though they lost some guys, they are the deepest team in baseball and will fill those holes just fine. The Padres have to have a better showing than last season, but it won’t be enough to get it done. While the Diamondbacks and Rockies will continue to crowd the bottom of the division, Big Blue will take their top spot back and win the West. 

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