Detroit Tigers Rumors: Asking price is reportedly high for Justin Verlander
Detroit Tigers fans have seen the team turn in an up-and-down season so far. The Tigers have played better lately, but they could conceivably trade some players. Here’s the reported latest on Justin Verlander.
Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Justin Verlander has been excellent at times this season. He opened the season with 14 strikeouts compared to just nine hits, four walks and three runs allowed in 13.1 innings.
He also took a no-hitter into the sixth inning against Seattle, ending up with 11 punch outs in just 5.2 frames.
Verlander has also allowed three runs or fewer in 12 of his 17 starts.
While those numbers have been encouraging, Verlander has also struggled in a handful of starts.
Cleveland tagged him for 11 hits, nine runs, three home runs and a walk in four innings in mid-April, while the Astros scored six runs in 5.2 innings off the ace in late-May.
In Verlander’s last start, Cleveland got to him again, accounting for nine hits, seven runs, three walks and two home runs in 3.1 innings.
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The veteran’s name has surfaced lately in rumors, and was reportedly linked (along with Alex Avila) with the Chicago Cubs earlier in the week.
What’s more, ESPN’s Buster Olney tweeted the following about Detroit’s longtime ace and the Tigers on Tuesday.
"“Teams asking about Justin Verlander; perception is DET looking for big,big,big return w/out salary offset. Owed $70m for rest of ’17,’18.’19.”"
This kind of reported price for Verlander makes sense in some regard. Detroit’s starter is a half season removed from a 2016 campaign where he had an excellent chance to win the Cy Young.
Verlander finished tied for first in the American League WAR with a 5.2 number.
He also paced the junior circuit in strikeout percentage (28.1) and WHIP (1.00).
The veteran also finished second in innings pitched (227.2), ERA (3.04), SIERA (3.42) and third in strikeouts per nine innings (10.04) and fourth in FIP (3.48).
While Verlander has struggled relative to those numbers in 2017, he’s still second on Detroit’s pitching staff in overall WAR, and has showed signs of regaining last year’s form.
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Dealing him for anything less than a significant return would be the definition of selling low.