If the asking price for Bedard, Kazmir, and Peavy is too high.......the Reds could always go to those same teams second best starting pitcher and try and pry them away with a Hamilton plus offer. All stats listed are for 2007. Keep in mind, the goal is a #2 or #3 starter. Some of these guys are clearly #2's and some are #3's. What I like about most of them is that their numbers are already decent and their still young.
Such as instead of Baltimore's Bedard, ask about 28 year old Jeremy Guthrie (7-5, 175 IP, 165 Hits allowed, 123 K's, 3.70 era, 1.21 WHIP, .249 BAA).
Or instead of Kazmir from the Rays, ask about 26 year old James Shields (12-8, 215 IP, 202 Hits, 184 K's, 3.85 era, 1.11 WHIP, .247 BAA).
Or instead of Peavy from the Padres, ask about 28 year old Chris Young (9-8, 173 IP, 118 Hits, 167 K's, 3.12 era, 1.10 WHIP, .192 BAA).
Or go to KC who needs everything to turn their team around and try and pry one of their 3 starters away - 29 year old Gil Meche (9-13, 216 IP, 218 Hits, 156 K's, 3.67 era, 1.30 WHIP, .263 BAA) or 24 year old Zach Greinke (7-7, 122 IP, 122 Hits, 3.69 era, 1.30 WHIP, .265 BAA) or 26 year old Brian Bannister (14-10, 203 IP, 190 Hits, 96 K's, 3.95 era, 1.26 WHIP, .247 BAA).
Or go to last place finishers San Francisco and try and pry 23 year old Matt Cain away (7-16, 200 IP, 173 Hits, 163 K's, 3.65 era, 1.26 WHIP, .235 BAA).
I could go on and on. But their are alot of #1 or #2 starters on bad teams that my be swapped for less of a blockbuster deal where we don't have to give up everything to get them.
Just my opinion. Solidying the middle of the starting rotation and then allowing our young guys to fill the last 2 slots, would help tremendously.