Dodgers A TCB illustration of the LA Dodgers.

There might be no team in American professional sports with a winning expectation like the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers have spent a truckload of money on some of the best baseball players in Major League Baseball. They’ve also trotted out and developed some of the best players in the sport as well. Their lineup is an embarrassment of riches, and their pitching staff is excellent, too.

Thus far, while the Dodgers aren’t on a “Superteam” pace, Los Angeles still leads the National League West division through May 20. They’re 33-17, which still trails Philadelphia for the best record in baseball. But they’re no slouches, to say the least. Unsurprisingly, the Dodgers lead MLB in runs scored with a gaudy 259. They’ve also allowed the fewest runs in the NL (172).

All that said, here are three reasons why the Dodgers will win the NL West.

Mookie Betts is having an MVP season

Mookie Betts is playing like the best baseball player in the world. While Betts’ tenure in Dodger Blue has seen him change positions, it’s been no problem at all for him. Betts has brought his bat everywhere he plays, and in 2024, he’s done that and then some. He’s hitting .335 and leads MLB in on-base percentage (.432). In most offensive categories, Betts ranks as one of the best in the league. The NL MVP race may get more contested later on, but it might not matter if Betts keeps playing at this high of a level. And since he’s on the Dodgers, he’ll prove to be a pivotal reason why they’ll win the West.

They have Shohei Ohtani

Sure, that’s a simple reason. But it’s a big one nonetheless. Shohei Ohtani has been one of the best hitters in baseball this season, if you can believe it. Ohtani leads the league in SLG with a ridiculous mark of .653 and is hitting .353, the best in MLB. He’s been a force to be reckoned with at the plate this season, continuing a stretch of being one of the best hitters on the planet. That the Dodgers have him is crazy, even in recent hindsight, and he’s performed lights out under immense pressure and added scrutiny from the fallout of the Ippei Mizuhara debacle. And still, here he is, mashing the baseball.

They’re already the best in the West by a not-so-insignificant margin

The Dodgers hold an eight-game lead over the San Diego Padres. San Diego recently took two of three from LA, and still finds itself eight games back. That’s a really tall order, and considering the talent the Dodgers have, it’s an even taller order. LA has already built up a big lead after they caught fire to begin the month of May. That hot start accounts for wins the team will either 1) not “have” to attain later, giving them a cushion, or 2) pad onto their already sizable lead. The worst thing the rest of the NL West could have done was let the Dodgers get hot. They missed the first time. If it happens again, it might be off to the races.

About Chris Novak

Chris Novak has been talking and writing about sports ever since he can remember. Previously, Novak wrote for and managed sites in the SB Nation network for nearly a decade from 2013-2022