The Nats pitchers ARE pretty awesome, right?
We all know that Rizzo is just cutting his losses, playing up what he has now to make up for the fact he never got that rotation anchor he knew the team needed. Still, the best "everything goes right" case does seem possible, doesn't it?
Livan repeats last year, Lannan and Marquis pitch similar to they have in years that were not 2010, Zimmermann breaks out and has a solid season and someone else (looks like Maya is Rizzo's favorite) rounds out the rotation.
Nothing in here is crazy. There's no #1 in this case but there are 4 guys I'd say at least #3s, maybe a #2 depending. That's a solid rotation and with a decent bullpen (possible) and a good offense (less likely), the Nats would be a good team (like high 70s wins). The problem is the worst "everything goes wrong" case seems equally as likely...
Livan reverts back to his "retirement tour" form, Lannan and Marquis suffer through injury recovery and are passable at best, Zimmermann never gets back on track, and all those other pitchers are barely rotation worthy.
Again, there is nothing here that's "sign Pudge to a 2-year deal for tons more money than anyone was going to offer" insane. In this case you have no #1s, #2s, or really #3s. Maybe a #4 type guy or two but it's mostly rotation filler. In this case with a bad bullpen (not likely but bullpens are random) and a bad offense (certainly possible), the Nats would be a terrible team (like low 60s wins).
Of course, nothing ever goes completely right or completely wrong. Aim for somewhere in between and you have the most likely scenario, but at this point Rizzo's got to roll with what he's got on hand and he knows it. Nats fans might as well be optimistic about it.