After what will go down as one of the best World Series in a long time, the Houston Astros are the Kings of Baseball. And, right along with all of the dancing Astros was a familiar face: Justin Verlander.
By now, everyone in Detroit knows the story: right at the last seconds of August Verlander approved a trade that sent him to Houston. In a matter of moments, he went from a cellar dweller with the Tigers to a World Series front-runner with the Astros. Not only that, he became their ace, going 5-0 with a 1.06 ERA in 34 innings with his new club. When the Astros beat the Yankees in seven games in the ALCS, it’s safe to safe most of Detroit became Astros fans for at least two weeks.
Verlander started two games during the Fall Classic, going six innings in each contest, collecting 14 strikeouts, and coming away with his only decision in Game 6–a loss. Both games he pitched in easily could have been won by the Astros, and in Game 2 they came storming back for a 7-6 victory, falling short however in Game 6. The loss in Game 6 was Verlander’s first loss as an Astro.
While to be honest, it is a little bittersweet to see the face of your franchise for the last decade-plus win a ring in a different uniform, it’s hard not to be happy for Justin. He simply was the best pitcher we had seen for a while–and he was our workhorse. JV logged over 2,500 innings in 13 seasons, compiled 183 wins, and helped get us back to the World Series twice. So while we look forward to a (necessary) rebuilding season or two, JV finally got the monkey off his back and added another bullet point to his Hall of Fame resume. Congrats, Justin.