This is an old art. doesn't make a lot of since throughout but with financing being the crux, you can ponder. The answer there is easy: value. The longer a team gets to use the player, and the less the team has to pay that player, the higher the value is to a team trading for him. So the more they’d better pay up. With two years remaining before being eligible for free agency, Scherzer was worth more last winter than he would be this winter, even though he is coming off the best year of his career. So for those discussing why it might make sense for the Tigers to trade a starting pitcher, maybe we’re all discussing the wrong one. Maybe we should be talking about trading Doug Fister or Rick Porcello? Hey, what about a deal involving Drew Smyly? Both Fister and Porcello have two years remaining before they can declare free agency. You want to talk about a deal -- Smyly won’t be a free agent until after 2018. By process of elimination -- Porcello’s return probably wouldn’t be great, and the Tigers should be hoping to acquire a player like Smyly rather than trading him -- that leaves us with Fister. If you’re going to create a trade narrative around the Tigers, that’s the way to do it. The similarities between Scherzer a season ago and Fister now are remarkable. Salary: Scherzer was paid $6.7 million in 2013; the 2014 salary for the arbitration-eligible Fister, projected by MLB Trade Rumors, will be $6.9 million. From The Detroit News: It makes more sense to trade high-value Doug Fister than Max Scherzer | The Detroit News * I think Fister can get or stay better than Porcello but they're equal as far as I can see. Fister's #s were much better but he was hard luck with offensive help. From one season to the next any of these guys can fall off the map. So even starting Smyly is a good idea. Maybe he turns the corner.