1. Hire a new manager and staff 2. Pick up veteran starter for rotation 3. Pick up LH relief pitcher 4. Pick up 4th OF/LH bench bat 5. Pick up backup catcher (I'm not sure whether cat daddy3000 still objects, but there you have it) 6. Pick up utility IF options (aka Espinosz insurance)
Settle with arbitration eligibles:
7. Jeremy Blevins 9. Ian Desmond (extension candidate) 10. Ross Detwiler 11. Doug Fister 12. Ross Ohlendorf 13. Wilson Ramos (extension candidate) 14. Drew Storen 16. Jordan Zimmermann (extension candidate)
Yep, that's right, every single item on the checklist I identifed a month ago has been hit, with none of the arbitration candidates going to a hearing. IMHO, this offseason has been very productive for Mike Rizzo. I'd be delighted if he could get one of the extension candidates inked to a longer term deal, but even if he makes no more moves this is a good team. Good enough? Who knows? I don't think he's going to be able to get Paul Goldschmidt to play 1b, and that's the only starting position that really could use a significant upgrade. Rizzo might do some tweaking with one spot on the bench. But remember - there's no way to make a team failure proof.
But I sure am stoked for the season. Bring on 2014!