There’s been a lot of talk lately about $200 million pitchers, and Justin Verlander is on the short list of men that could break that barrier first. He’s expressed that he would love to pitch his whole career for the Detroit Tigers but in the last few weeks, that tone has changed.
The last few years have been great for the 30-year old right hander, who’s widely thought of as the best pitcher in Major League Baseball.
Not only has he had astounding individual success, but also a great amount of team success as well. With Verlander as the team’s ace, the Tigers have transformed from one of the worst teams in the whole league to a powerhouse set to make playoff runs for years to come.
By the time his current contract is up, he will have spent 10 years in Detroit — a good portion of his career with this team.
That also means he spent more than enough time with the Tigers to make a run at a championship. It might be hard to stomach, but he more than deserves to go and make his money elsewhere with another contender if he doesn’t win a championship in Detroit in the next couple years.
It’s not like he’s came out and said that he wants to leave Detroit, but he isn’t quite as sure as he’s sounded in the past about staying with the Tigers. Verlander spoke recently about this subject and he expressed that he feels a sort of obligation to test free agency because of all the players that came before him that fought for the right.
I find it hard to believe that Verlander would go to a non-contender at this stage in his career due to his insane competitiveness, so that eliminates a lot of teams that will be making a strong run at the superstar pitcher in 2015.
You will always have to deal with the high bankroll teams such as the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox, who are looking for the big names for their big cities, but I would still say Detroit will have the inside edge on any team barring any huge shakeups that hinder the Tigers from contending for championships.
It would be great for Verlander to finish out his career in Detroit, but who knows if that will happen. It seems like it’s a long shot these days since players are more focused on their individual value rather than putting themselves in the best situation to win.
I personally think that he will stay in Detroit because the Tigers are so close to winning a World Series. If they happen to win in the next two years, he might have no choice but to stay.
No matter how much we want him to stay as fans, you still couldn’t be mad if he were to leave town, although that’s hard to tell an upset fan after losing a once-in-a-lifetime talent.