It's ironic that the mechanic who I trust to not mislead me and generate unnecessary repairs had to call me today and tell me, "When we pulled off the pieces that we could see were worn out and replaced them, we found another problem." In this case, it looks like the intake manifold gasket is leaking, and it's going to be another $500-600 on top of what I've spent so far to repair it. Ouch! But I know he wouldn't do this to pad his bill, so if it needed it, it needed it. Indeed, from certain handling characteristics during our trip to Denver (such as lack of power in specific cases), it's probably needed this work for a while now.
It's a pity I didn't win that Rav4 at the Giants Fan Appreciation Day.