2010 NL West: Colorado Rockies Ready for Weight of Expectation This Time

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2010 NL West: Colorado Rockies Ready for Weight of Expectation This Time

Saving the best for last is always a nice motivational ploy and, in my world, the National League West is the light at the end of any Major League Baseball tunnel.

Given its steady improvement in recent years, we're getting closer to the day when your average baseball fan will experience similar sentiments.

The division once known as the Mild Mild West is no longer a punching bag. It's produced three of the last four NL Wild Cards and its produced four of the last six NL Championship Series participants.

In other words, the balance of Senior Circuit power is shifting toward the Pacific.

The West isn't ready to lay claim to the best division in the National League quite yet given the projected struggles of the San Diego Padres and Arizona Diamondbacks (until Brandon Webb returns or a surprise starter emerges).

Nevertheless, the three clubs that finished atop the 2009 standings—the champion Los Angeles Dodgers, wild-card-holding Colorado Rockies, and down-to-the-wire contending San Francisco Giants—field some dashing young talent.

Kids who could blossom into super-duper stars at any moment—guys like Tim Lincecum, Matt Kemp, and Troy Tulowitzki already have and more are on their way.

Even the most casual MLB fan will soon know the names of Matt Cain, Pablo Sandoval, Clayton Kershaw, Andre Ethier, Carlos Gonzalez, and Ubaldo Jimenez.

Both the Fathers and Snakes have their up-and-comers, too.

Check 'em out.

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