The Los Angeles Dodgers are in defense of a long-awaited title. Early returns suggest they are not resting on laurels and have entered as hungry as they were when title-starved. No one in Major League Baseball has played better than its reigning king. No one has even shown signs of closing the gap between hunter and hunted.

Dave Roberts' team enters this weekend's blockbuster series with the San Diego Padres at 11-2. With a mighty offense that features half of the National League's top eight in on-base percentage. With a batting average a stunning 16 points higher than anyone else in the Senior Circuit and a team OPS of .876. They enter with Max Muncy, Corey Seager, and Justin Turner hitting the cover off the ball and unheralded rookie Zach McKinstry, who never homered while at Central Michigan, homering with regularity at the big-league level.

Los Angeles sports what could be the best pitching staff in the league. Clayton Kershaw, Trevor Bauer, Walker Buehler, and Dustin May all have sub-3.00 ERAs.