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Former Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander wants to stay elite

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Michael Whitaker
Always at the front lines of Detroit Sports.

Former Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander is entering his 16th season in Major League Baseball, and he wants to be able to stay at the top of his game and remain among the top pitchers in the game.

“The end goal is just to continue to adapt and try to be successful and fight this age thing,” he said. “You can’t just keep doing the same stuff. Your body changes as you get older and you need to adapt and do things a little bit differently to try stay on top of your game.”

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In 2019, with 21 wins and his 2.58 ERA, he earned the Cy Young Award for the first time since 2011. His 34 starts were tied for the most in baseball, and he also finished with 223 innings played.

Before a career resurgence, Verlander had doubts about whether his career would last this long.

“Not that the competitiveness faded, but my ability to compete at a high level,” he said on his self-doubt. “It was difficult. It was mentally draining just not being healthy and trying to fight through it for myself, for the Tigers. At the time just hearing everybody say I was done just wasn’t easy.”

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“I look back at that now as kind of a necessary evil for my career,” he said. “I learned a lot about my body and my process through that and I’m just fortunate that I didn’t severely hurt myself during that time and I was able to come out of it better on the other side.”

Unfortunately for Verlander, he’s now caught in the middle of the Astros sign-stealing scandal, and has also drawn major criticism for not doing more to stop it despite having spent his entire career speaking out against such actions.

– – Quotes via Kristie Rieken of WXYZ Link – –

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