MLB 2012: NL wide open after turbulent offseason

By Jay Cohen

Associated Press

Published: Saturday, March 24 2012 4:00 p.m. MDT

Carlos Gonzalez and Troy Tulowitzki form one of the majors' best 1-2 offensive combinations. Michael Cuddyer left the Minnesota Twins to sign a free-agent deal with Colorado over the winter, adding more punch to the Rockies' lineup.

Colorado has a group of promising candidates for the rotation, but they're mostly young and unproven. The notable exception is 49-year-old Jamie Moyer, who is attempting a comeback from Tommy John surgery on his left elbow that sidelined him all of last season.

SAN DIEGO PADRES

The Padres are rebuilding once again, but there is some promise in San Diego. First baseman Yonder Alonso, acquired from Cincinnati in the Latos deal, has the perfect line-drive swing for Petco Park, and right-hander Edinson Volquez could rebound under the tutelage of manager Bud Black and pitching coach Darren Balsley. Carlos Quentin, who came over in a trade with the Chicago White Sox, was having a nice spring before he was sidelined by arthroscopic right knee surgery.

San Diego should be better than its 71-91 record from a year ago. But the improvement probably won't be enough to move out of the basement of the division.

AP Sports Writers Rob Maaddi, Joe Kay and R.B. Fallstrom, and AP freelance writer Bob Huhn contributed to this report.

Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap

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