And they were one of the great and rare success stories last year, health-wise and performance-wise. Nats bullpen also wasn't much better than ours last year - probably worse statistically - though they got better when it counted. Then they went out and signed the guy who lost Game 7 of the World Series for a bunch of money and I think we tagged him twice last week (and Hudson too).
Bullpens are the ultimate small sample. The problem here is we seem to have a group of pretty good - though hardly great - pitchers nosediving at roughly the same time. Hector is now our top guy again, Hunter's back on a downswing, and none of our trade acquisitions have had an upswing yet.
At the end of the day the season still turns on the offense continuing to produce - hopefully when Harper turns on the light again someone else's won't turn off - and the 3-6 starters keeping us in more games than not. We go .500 the rest of the way that's still 31 wins and a playoff berth, though probably not the best possible playoff berth.
Where the bullpen will cost us is in the actual playoffs... but the fact that they stink now doesn't actually mean they will stink for five days in October.