...and there's nothing stopping us from having one just as strong next year. The Padres and Rays have built strong bullpens year after year by using good scouting to find live arms and then putting those players in roles that will maximize their talents; not by paying overrated guys big bucks.
Yes and we are not the Rays and Padres. We got steals in Miguel Gonzalez and Stu Pomeranz thanks to an improved scouting department, but I'am guessing our scouting/developing program still isn't as good as the Rays. They are magicians down in Tampa. Although guys like Stu have pitched well in limited innings, we don't know how they will hold up over the course of a season. And in no way, shape, or form will a major league team use the same 7 guys in a bullpen the whole year. So there is nothing wrong with having a guy like Pomeranz as the 8th man that comes up first when someone goes down.