In an anonymous survey of general managers and other top executives conducted by CBS Sports, the majority of respondents said they believe that Cubs starter Matt Garza holds more trade value than either Zack Greinke or Cole Hamels. The reason is not because Garza is the better pitcher -- the executives agree that he isn't -- but because the club that gets him will control him for a longer period of time. That team would also receive a draft pick as compensation in the event that Garza decided to leave via free agency.
The general consensus, though, is that while Garza seems to rank third among these three good pitchers, he is worth more than the other two on the trade market because of the following two points:
1. Garza will be tied to the acquiring team for a year and a half, not just a half year
2. A draft choice will still be attached to Garza whereas a team acquiring Hamels or Greinke would not have the benefit of an acquired draft choice should Hamels or Greinke leave via free agency after this year. That's because of the new CBA rules stipulating free agents must spend a year with their final team for their team to be awarded a pick.
Related: Cubs Minor League Wrap: July 4