You know, this is the first season since I started this blog when we have got into July without recurring cries of 'wholesale changes at the end of the season' being heard.
Perhaps, at last, people can genuinely see the talent starting to emerge from the club's work with the Academy and a number of young players are making impressive progress. Not definitive, at this stage, as that's a long way off for some of the younger ones, but their have been impressive strides as the season has progressed.
The past week has seen several clubs announce that they have served 28 days notice on the current employers of some top cricketers that they want their services next season.
Varun Chopra is attracting interest and is often outside the Warwickshire eleven, Durham may not be able to afford Mark Wood, Scott Borthwick and Mark Stoneman, Northamptonshire could lose Josh Cobb, Olly Stone and Ben Duckett. Nottinghamshire are being linked with most of them...sigh.
Derbyshire? Very shrewdly, we extended the deals on the players seen as key to our futures and although the end of the summer will see inevitable departures, it is more likely to be younger players who are deemed to be just short of the desired standard.
As far as recruitment goes, there is a balancing act between bringing in a player of quality and affording opportunity to young talent. For example, a notional four-day side next season could quite easily line up, with current batting averages in brackets:
In selecting that side, you are omitting some good young players - most notably Matt Critchley and Tom Taylor, as well as experienced professionals like Andy Carter, Tom Poynton and Wes Durston. Nor is there an overseas player, something Durham has struggled to afford for years.
For any and every player we bring in, one of those above doesn't get a game and they need to be markedly better AND affordable for it to be justified. You might say that Neil Broom's stat make him the most vulnerable, but a man with his skills has to come good and it has shown in fits and starts. You'll not really improve on that batting line up, even it misfires, as they all do, on occasion..
In the bowling, Ben Cotton and Will Davis have both impressed and need to be playing more, while Alex Hughes is too good a player to be only in the one-day stuff long term. If John Sadler can tell Tom Knight to just bowl as he used to, we'd have another damn good one-day option as an all-rounder too. The likes of Elstone, Cork and Hemmings are a little further back in the queue, but have potential.
In short, I don't think we will see - nor do we need - massive changes. A quality bowler, maybe as overseas, possibly a look at wicket-keepers and see if there's an option out there who might offer more runs in the short term, perhaps a young batsman - maybe one of those we have had on trial.
I'd be surprised at more, from both a budgetary and opportunities perspective.
In itself, that is a major shift from previous years and is good to see.
As always, I welcome your thoughts.
Postscript I meant to express my disappointment earlier in the week at Tom Taylor's season-ending stress fracture to the back. It has been a funny old summer for a talented cricketer, but at 21 he has plenty of years ahead of him.
I am sure he will return next summer, raring to go and am equally sure that you will join me in wishing him well.