The MLB trade deadline is about a month away, so trade rumors are about to start flying left and right. Ditto for informed speculation.

To wit, consider Jeff Passan's latest at Yahoo Sports, where he attempts to answer a simple question: Would the Detroit Tigers make Justin Verlander available? 

Multiple front-office sources told Yahoo Sports they expect Verlander to hit the trade market sometime in the next two weeks. This is more tea-leaf reading than any indication Tigers general manager Al Avila has given in conversations with teams.

Passan lays out why the Tigers would consider trading Verlander -- the $56 million he's owed over the next two seasons, the Tigers' poor record and so on -- but treats the note for what it is: a thought experiment laid out by some in the know.

That doesn't mean the Tigers won't make Verlander available or that they won't take calls about their longtime ace. Indeed Avila would be wise to see what contenders would be willing to give up for Verlander -- in large part because having an accurate understanding of the market is part of every GM's job. It just stands to reason that any potential Verlander deal is likely to happen during the winter, when teams have more budget room available and can absorb larger contracts.

Still, it's fun to think about Verlander hitting the trade market just before the deadline -- even if he's no longer an ace-level performer.