Back in early February we discussed some possibly hot spring training battles in the NL West. It's time to see how those are shaping up.

Arizona Diamondbacks
Stephen Drew vs. Health

Last time around, I listed that there wasn't a single positional battle for the D-Backs heading into camp. And there still isn't a legitimate one, but Stephen Drew is still recovering from a gruesome ankle injury last season and he hasn't yet gotten close to appearing in spring action. Tuesday, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reported that while manager Kirk Gibson wouldn't rule out opening day for Drew, it appears unlikely. So it's Willie Bloomquist and John McDonald at shortstop in the meantime.

First Base: Aubrey Huff vs. Brandon Belt

This has actually become a three-man competition, with Brett Pill also in the mix. All three are hitting the ball well this spring and it's a full-on fight for the spot. My personal guess is that unless either Belt or Pill make it impossible to do so, Huff is allowed one last chance to open the season. The Giants have been awfully stubborn in moving on.

Shortstop: Ryan Theriot vs. Brandon Crawford vs. Mike Fontenot

Considering the vast difference in defensive skills -- Crawford is a great defender, the other two are sub-par -- Crawford would have to hit terribly to lose the job. He's currently hitting .375/.500/.563 in 20 plate appearances this spring. So he's the clear front-runner.

Left Field: Jerry Sands vs. Tony Gwynn vs. Juan Rivera

I'll guess that Rivera has a leg up here. If the Dodgers really wanted to hand the job to Sands, they wouldn't have brought Rivera back. And then there's this: Rivera has three homers and six RBI in just 16 spring at-bats. Meanwhile, Sands is struggling (.167 with four strikeouts in 12 at-bats). Gwynn likely figures as the fourth outfielder throughout the season.

Closer: Javy Guerra vs. Kenley Jansen

I was probably a bit aggressive with including this as a spring battle. Unless Guerra completely falls apart or gets injured, he did enough last year to retain his job as the closer. Jansen has better stuff and a much higher upside, though, so whenever there's a hiccup from Guerra, this becomes a competition. For now, the Dodgers have publicly said Guerra is the closer entering the season (

Colorado Rockies
No. 3-5 starting pitchers: Alex White vs. Drew Pomeranz vs. Juan Nicasio vs. Guillermo Moscoso vs. Tyler Chatwood vs. Josh Outman vs. Jamie Moyer

Obviously with this many guys in the mix, it's going to down to the wire. Moyer is a great story -- check out my colleague Danny Knobler's column on the 49-year-old lefty -- as is Nicasio (returning from a broken neck), but they don't hand out rotation spots for that. From all the reports in early camp, this is still a wide-open race. The small sample stats for the spring so far are as follows, with ERA and innings pitched for each: Pomeranz (0.00, 5), Nicasio (0.00, 3), Moyer (1.80, 5), White (3.60, 5), Chatwood (6.00, 3), Moscoso (7.20, 5), Outman (9.00, 5). I said it in the previous installment here, but it's worth repeating: White and Pomeranz are young enough that it wouldn't hurt for just a bit more seasoning in Triple-A, but the two are easily the most talented here.

Catcher: Nick Hundley vs. John Baker vs. Yasmani Grandal

Several reports have Grandal "likely" ticketed for Triple-A (North County Times), so Hundley is the obvious frontrunner for the spot here. He's hitting well in his limited action so far this spring (.333, one homer in 12 at-bats). Hundley will certainly lose at-bats to Baker, considering they hit from opposite sides of the plate and Hundley has never appeared in more than 85 games in a big-league season. The best guess is this isn't a straight platoon, but instead Baker gets the occasional start against an opposing right-hander and Grandal hits the club either late this season or sometime next season.