Verlander has had two bad starts in 2017 (April 15 vs. Cleveland, nine runs given up in a 11-9 loss; May 25 vs. Houston, six runs given up in a 9-6 loss), but aside from those, he’s been very good. Not only has Verlander been effective, but his average fastball velocity is the best it’s been since 2011, according to Fangraphs.
Not to mention, Verlander is a workhorse: Only twice in his career has he pitched fewer than 30 games in a season (2005, two starts, debut season; 2015, injury season), and three times has he pitched fewer than 200 innings.
One small, tiny, problematic issue: Verlander has a full no-trade clause (10-and-5 rights). But given Detroit’s tire-spinning, Verlander entering the back nine of his career and Houston’s willingness to add payroll, it wouldn’t be much of a surprise if he decides to waive it in hopes of having another shot at a championship. Houston would give him his best shot at that.
Hopefully, Keuchel’s injury is nothing too serious and Houston’s ace will be able to get back on the mound soon.
Another factor was beyond the control of Coleman and his teammates. That was the surprising offseason release of star cornerback Josh Norman because of what the team was concerned would become a contentious situation over his contract. By the time the youngsters drafted to replace Norman started to perform at a respectful level, the season was essentially lost following a 1-5 start accentuated by leaky pass defense.
Coleman hopes his unit can avoid a similar loss of talent this season in free agency by the re-signing of key veterans like defensive tackle K.K. Short and defensive end Mario Addison.
If we can get those core guys that you need as part of the team and want out there on Sundays to do battle with, we can hit this offseason on the right note,said Coleman, who signed his own three-year, $17 million extension last July.