Re: What's your excitement level for this year?
I'm excited, in part, because I'm enthusiastic about the amount of quality impact youngsters who should contribute significantly in 2008, and by the incremental improvements that we've seen in bench depth, bullpen strength, and youthful hope for the rotation (all of which were weaknesses in 2007 and before).
I would have loved to add a guy like Bedard to the mix, but not at the expense of losing numerous members of our Fab 4-5. He would have been the 2008 version of Neagle that put this team into major NLCS contention. In retrospect, if we were certain that Bruce and several second tier prospects could have landed him, without us having to touch Hamilton, Votto, Cueto or Bailey I might have actually prefered that.
Bruce is probably going to be the best all-around OF we've seen around these parts in a decade+. However, with Hamilton, Dunn, EdE, Votto, Griffey, BP and a decent supporting cast of regulars and bench contributors, our offense was probably going to excel with, or without Bruce. Instead, we're now going to be counting upon several youngsters to post breakthrough seasons, just to make the rotation passable. Regardless, I'm very excited about our youngsters, and can't wait to watch Volquez.