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Justin Verlander Must Be Injured, Right?

From 2006-2013 Justin Verlander was one of the most dominant power pitchers the game has ever seen. In each of those 8 seasons, Verlander made at least 30 starts and went 7 straight years throwing over 200 innings. He had a remarkable 137-75 record, with an ERA of 3.38.

So far in 2014, something if off.

Back in 2011, Verlander not only won the Cy Young award but he was the AL MVP. That year the 6'5 right hander went 24-5 with a 2.40 ERA and struck out 250 batters in 251 innings.

Verlander has two full seasons under his belt since his 24 win season and they look like this:

  • 2012: 17-8, 238.1 IP, 2.64 ERA, 1.06 WHIP, 239 K
  • 2013: 13-12, 218.1 IP, 3.46 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 217 K

Those numbers might be great for any other pitcher in baseball, but do you see the trend?

His wins, innings pitched, and strike outs have decreased each season, and his ERA, loses, and WHIP have increased each season.

Then we get to this season.

Over 15 starts, Verlander is 6-7 with a 4.98 ERA and a 1.56 WHIP. He has allowed 111 hits in just 97.2 innings and has only struck out 69 batters. His K/9 is just 6.3, which is by far his lowest since entering the majors.

The beginning of the season for the Tigers ace did not start off ugly. Verlander started the year 4-1 with a 2.68 ERA.

Since May 4th, Verlander is 2-6 and his ERA has risen to 4.98 over 8 starts. In 6 of those 8 starts Verlander has given up 5 or more earned runs.

June has just been absolutely dreadful for Verlander, as he has lost all 3 of his starts this month.

  • June 5: 7 IP, 8 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 2 HR, 4 BB, 4 K
  • June 11: 5.2 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 1 HR, 4 BB, 6 K
  • June 16: 6 IP, 12 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 1 HR, 2 BB, 2 K

What do you think is going on with Verlander? Is he injured and not saying anything? Is the 31 year old just breaking down? Let us hear your opinion in our comment section!