Thanksgiving prep and two weeks of vacation killed any plans for appliance repair I may have had in November, but I was able to get around to replacing the hinges this past weekend, and...
After removing them and comparing to the new hinges, it was easy to tell that the old hinges were noticeably sprung. We've been able to run four complete cycles with no leaks, starting/stopping, or strange timer issues. My best guess is that the earlier timer issues had something to do with the "smart cycle management" system having conflicts with the repeated starting/stopping and leaking.
I've consulted the forums several times for help with other minor appliance repairs (and found the knowledge invaluable), but this is the first time I've actually logged on and asked the enlightened ones for assistance. All I can say is, WOW - what a great group of people you have here on the forum! Many, MANY thanks to all of you who responded and provided guidance!