The Padres had been in sole possession of first place in the NL West since June 11th, but they now find themselves tied with the Giants after falling to their rivals from the Bay 1-0 last night. It was San Diego's 12th loss in 15 games, and San Francisco's sixth win in seven games. A lead that once swelled to six-and-a-half games disappeared in just 15 days.
The Pads are going to have to continue to rely on their extreme pitching and defense approach (MLB best 3.34 ERA and +47.3 UZR) while the Giants have benefited greatly from in-season additions like Pat Burrell (134 OPS+ with SF) and Buster Posey (129). It's worth noting that the Padres do have two games at hand, but it might not matter when the two clubs meet for three games in San Francisco for the season's final series.
Of course, we'd be remiss if we didn't mention the Rockies, who have won eight in a row and 15 of their last 19 as part of their annual second half surge. They're now just two-and-a-half back in the division after being 11 games back 18 days ago. It's going to be a mad dash to finish for the NL West crown, which brings us to today's question.
Who will win the NL West?