3. San Diego Padres
Yes, the Padres are far out of division contention and trail in the Wild Card race by 6.0 games at the start of Thursday’s games. That is exactly where the rest of the league hopes this lineup stays that has thus far been a complete mess compared to expectations.
The Padres attempted to build the MLB version of a super team spending to build what looked to be the most impressive lineup in the National League. Juan Soto, Manny Machado, Fernando Tatis Jr., and Xander Bogaerts headline what was thought to be the best lineup in the league.
Clearly, that isn’t San Diego, but Atlanta that has established itself as the deepest and most dangerous offense. However, if San Diego figures it out after the All-Star break, this is a lineup if clicking no team wants to face come postseason time.
The fact that this team is still a consideration in the National League despite an ugly start speaks to the lack of depth and just how big of a favorite that Atlanta has earned the right to be.
With young teams leading the way for the NL, Atlanta is clearly the team everyone is chasing not the struggling Padres, regressing Dodgers, or a Mets team that is learning you cannot buy a championship.