Breaking News – The Detroit Tigers and Justin Verlander have agreed to remain committed to one another for the next several seasons; a minimum of seven to be exact, as Verlander signed a deal that will extend his contract past 2014 and pay him an average of $28 million from 2015-2019. If he meets requirements he would also be rewarded with a $22 million deal in 2020.
MLB Impact – The signing of Verlander pretty much solidifies the Tigers dominance at the starting pitching position for the next several seasons. Along with JV the Tigers also have two above average starting pitchers in Doug Fister and Max Scherzer, with Anibal Sanchez and Rich Porcello filling out the rotation nicely.
Playing in Detroit his whole career, Verlander has gone 124-65 in the regular season with a 3.40 era and 1,454 strike outs in 8 seasons. While always effective, JV has come into his own the past two seasons, winning 41 games, earned run averages of 2.40 and 2.64 respectively and has thrown almost 500 strike outs. Averaging 240 innings pitched the last four seasons, Verlander is a true definition of a prototypical workhorse.
Fantasy Spin – Verlander finds himself in the first tier of fantasy starting pitchers. With the way he throws effortlessly, while getting stronger throughout the game, he can be depended on to get you anywhere from 17-25 wins, an earned run average near 3.00 while topping 200 K’s minimum.
If there was one downfall to having Verlander in 2013, and this is really reaching, is that he doesn’t have a prototypical closer to close out games for him to begin the year. If you look at 2011 Verlander won 24 games when Jose Valverde had a perfect season, never blowing a save. But with plenty of blown opportunities in 2012, JV being the biggest victim of it all, Verlander posted 17 wins. While still very good, he easily had a shot at 20+ wins.
With the way the Tigers offense is built, possessing possibly the best bat in the game with Miguel Cabrera, along with the likes of Prince Fielder, Austin Jackson, Tori Hunter and Victor Martinez, Verlander’s risk at blown wins due to a failed bullpen is probably minimal at best.