Ok, so the much more hydrated dough had both positives and negatives.
For starters, the positives. The skin of the loaf was definitely more blistered, which is nice. I strongly suspect the crumb will be much hole-ier. And I pulled them out after only 15 minutes at 450°, ten minutes shorter than the recipe recommends! Yet a thermometer inserted reported an interior temp exceeding 200°. The crust is a gorgeous color.
Negatives. As mentioned the dough was MUCH harder to work with. The slashes were much more difficult as the wet dough stuck to the razor blade, which led to an inferior beads-on-a-wire shape to the loaf.
In addition to the other changes I mentioned, I drenched the bread with the sprayer from the sink before putting it in the oven, definitely covered it well with water.
I think the lesson here is to go with somewhat less hydration so the dough is more easily workable and the slashes take better. Perhaps next run I will try with something roughly halfway between previous runs and this current one.
Possible thoughts for the future - a longer pan for the oven would be nice, these went right to the edge. A large steam tray might be nice for proofing so I don't waste so much plastic wrap.