I think we'd all just like to see some progress at the major league level. The only difference between this year and every other year is we have something to hang on to as a saving grace - Strasburg will come back, Harper will make the majors, all these top draft picks will produce a great team. In the past, our top prospects were Balester (who is solid, but had his limitations), Casto, Broadway, Watson, Willems, Smoker, McGeary, etc.
This year, Harper, Cole, Solis, Ray, Norris, Lombardozzi, Peacock, Hood, Meyers, Wilkie are all legitimate prospects and producing well. The past prospects mostly didn't play great in the minors, so I guess that is progress itself. I think we can all agree that this "batch" of prospects looks a lot better than the past couple, though we all also know that it may mean nothing.
But year after year, when we start to suck, we just call on journeymen and guys past their prime, hoping to hang on for one more season. When things go bad - as they always do - our only future pieces to look at are Espinosa, Ramos, Zimmermann, Desmond (maybe), Storen, Werth (who we're just hoping will not suck in 6 years)...there's just not a lot to look at because our roster is 90% journeymen and washed up veterans and 10% legitimate pieces for the future. That's my issue. Everything is in the minors, everyone tells us to "be patient," but at least when the Caps were bad, they had a solid mix of young talent, legitimate veterans (Zubrus, Pothier, Kolzig), and journeymen.
Look at this LaRoche situation. We could just call up Ankiel and keep Stairs (which I think will happen), we could just call up someone like Aubrey, a AAAA talent who has played well but is not the future at all, or we could call up Marrero, who may not be "ready," but how much better is AAA than AA? Why not give me - a fan - something to look forward to every night other than the slim hope that we won't fall apart in the 6th inning.
I just want to see some tangible progress. To have our major league team actually have more than 4-5 people who are going to be here in 2 years.
My personal frustration also sits with the overall attitude of the organization being all about small ball, grinding, playing the game the right way, etc. You can have good a good clubhouse without sacrificing talent.