Buzz: The Starting Pitcher's Market

Tim Redding is 0–2 with a 9.20 ERA in three starts, during which the Mets are 0–3.

Meanwhile, the Mets are 6–3 in Livan Hernandez’s nine starts this season, though five of the six wins were against the Braves, Pirates, Nationals, Marlins and Brewers.

Eventually, the Mets will promote Oliver Perez, who will re-join John Maine, Mike Pelfrey and Johan Santana, meaning one of Redding or Hernandez will get bumped from the rotation.

I would think Redding will slot in to the long-relief, spot-starter role, while Hernandez is allowed more time to pitch.

Nevertheless, from what I can gather, the Mets continue to keep an eye around baseball for an ‘experienced, reliable, consistent starting pitcher,’ to be counted on, every five days, for the back of their rotation.

According to MLB Trade Rumors, during the last few weeks, pitchers like Javier Vazquez, Jonathan Sanchez, Erik Bedard, Jarrod Washburn, Jon Garland, Roy Oswalt, Jason Marquis, Jake Peavy and Brad Penny could all be available, while Pedro Martinez remains unsigned as a free agent.

Sanchez, Peavy, Bedard and Oswalt will require a lot in return; Penny is too much of an injury risk, despite pitching well for the Red Sox; and Garland is having a poor season with the D’Backs.

The two guys from this list, who fit ‘experienced, reliable, consistent, back-of-the-rotation starting pitcher,’ would be Washburn and Marquis, both of whom are free agents at the end of this season, as well as Vazquez, who is under contract through 2010.

I’m not sure the Braves would ever deal a player under contract, in the middle of a pennant race, to the Mets, leaving Washburn and Marquis as players to watch as we get closer to the July 31 trade deadline.

If you remember, according to published reports, the Mets rejected a deal from the Cubs during the Winter Meetings that would have swapped Marquis for Aaron Heilman, who was instead traded to the Mariners for J.J. Putz.

Marquis was eventually traded to the Rockies, who are 13.5 games out of first place today and nine games under .500.