Detroit Tigers Justin Verlander to rehab for Toledo Mud Hens on Sunday


After a successful simulated game earlier this week in Oakland, the Detroit Tigers’ former MVP/Cy Young winner Justin Verlander will take the next step in his rehabilitation efforts with a start for the Toledo Mud Hens in a AAA game against the Indianapolis Indians on Sunday.

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It will be the first time that Verlander has pitched at the AAA-level after making the jump from AA in 2005 to the big leagues, a Rookie of the Year award, and a start in Game 1 of the World Series in his first year of 2006.

According to Brad Ausmus, as reported in the Detroit Free Press, Justin will be throwing between 80 and 85 pitches in what seemingly becomes a suddenly hot ticket at Indianapolis’ Victory Field.

Tuesday, Verlander went 4.1 innings in a simulated game, allowing three singles, one walk while striking out nine batters in a rotating “lineup” that consisted of Bryan Holaday, Dixon Machado, Hernan Perez and Tyler Collins.

Sunday figures to be a bigger test as young opposing players looking to ascend to the major leagues will be taking their best shot at making a name of themselves by hitting a former MVP pitcher hard.

It will be the first time that J.V. is throwing in a professional game since going 2.2 innings of a March 27 Spring Training game in Lakeland, Florida against the Toronto Blue Jays. He left that game in the third inning after what was reported as a mild “cramp” turned into two months of missed games.

It is unclear at this time whether Toledo residents will have the pleasure of seeing Justin Verlander pitch in person at Fifth Third Field for the first time in his career. The Tigers will see how it goes in Sunday’s outing before deciding if Verlander’s next outing will be in the red, white and blue of the Mud Hens or the Olde English D of the Tigers.

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