Justin Verlander is not having an All-Star season. Not even close. It’s too bad he’s taking someone else’s spot at the MLB All-Star game.
Verlander is going because of name recognition. It’s not that he’s having a bad season at 9-6 for the Detroit Tigers. But it’s far from being an All-Star season. He’s having too many ups and down to be considered All-Star material this season.
The bottom fell out Tuesday in an 11-4 loss to the lowly Chicago White Sox, who are struggling at 35-52. They feasted on Verlander who a surrendered five runs on 12 hits including two home runs.
In Verlander’s defense, he kept his team in the game for seven innings and perhaps should have excited with the game tied 1-1. Then everything fell apart. The Verlander of old, the true All-Star, never would have given up so much offense to a lowly White Sox team.
But it’s been this way the first half of the season. The betting remains that Verlander will turn it around the final months of the season and be as good as ever. Fortunately, Max Scherzer has picked up the slack in a huge way. If Verlander can get back on track, then the Tigers should coast to the playoffs. But Verlander, right now, is not the All-Star that he’s been in the past. He eventually may get there, but he’s not close right now. He may be going to the All-Star game but Jim Leyland shouldn’t use him. Besides, Verlander has already shown how ineffective he is against National League hitters.