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Houston doesn't want Dunn?

The best thing Purpura has done since taking over for Hunsicker is nothing stupid. When Beltran signed with the Mets, he surely was tempted to make a panic move for Randy Winn or someone similar. He's about to face some of the same temptations.

"To me," he said, "the biggest thing is not making a bad deal. I don't want to give up our key guys. We want to win this year, but we want to keep the major parts that would allow us continuing success."

Perfect.

It's also why he's not going to land Adam Dunn.

Dunn is fourth in the National League with 23 home runs. He's first with 94 strikeouts. His $4.6 million salary could double by next season.

He makes the Astros better, but inside the front office, there's disagreement on how much better.

Not that it would matter. Bad teams tend to overvalue their best players. The Reds apparently want as many as two major-league players and a prospect.

Purpura should tell the Reds thanks but no thanks unless the price drops dramatically. Almost every available player has a negative

Kearns may be unavailable:

Clubhouse confidential: Cincinnati outfielder Austin Kearns and Toronto first baseman-third baseman Shea Hillenbrand, whose names have been connected to the Indians' search for a right-handed hitter, are reportedly unavailable.

The Reds have made it clear they don't want to trade Kearns and Toronto wants at least one big- league player in exchange for Hillenbrand.

Good news all around really.