clear
Sunday September 24th, 2017 1:43PM

Verlander officially introduced in Houston after trade

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

HOUSTON (AP) — Justin Verlander only had about 30 minutes to decide whether to accept a trade the Houston Astros.

In the end, he figured he simply couldn't pass up a chance to join the team with the American League's best record.

"Ultimately it came down to winning and joining an organization that is set up to win for a long time," he said.

The right-hander was acquired from the Detroit Tigers on Thursday night in exchange for three minor leaguers just before the deadline for having players eligible for postseason play, and was introduced in Houston on Sunday.

"We've done a lot of work since Jim Crane bought the team in 2011 to put this team in a position to potentially bring the first championship to the city of Houston," general manager Jeff Luhnow said. "And adding a top of the rotation-caliber pitcher, All-Star, Cy Young, MVP to our club is exactly what we need to maximize our chances of not only winning this year but potentially in the years to come."

Verlander beamed as he donned his Astros cap, a different look for the 34-year-old after he spent his entire 13-year career playing for the Tigers. The trade came amid a difficult week for the city after Hurricane Harvey caused catastrophic flooding throughout the area.

"Hopefully we can bring a championship to a city that really could use something like that right now and hopefully I can be a part of that and we can give this city something to rally around," Verlander said.

The addition of Verlander bolster's an already solid rotation led by 2015 Cy Young Award winner Dallas Keuchel and Lance McCullers. Keuchel, who voiced displeasure after the Astros failed to make any big trades in July, is thrilled to add another ace to Houston's pitching staff.

"Excitement is an understatement," Keuchel said. "Anytime you get a perennial All-Star and pitcher of this caliber and what he's done it just makes the team that much better."

Verlander is looking forward to getting to know Houston's pitchers and hopes he can learn from the group.

"I'm excited to work with these guys and see these guys up close," he said. "I think this rotation has a chance to be something pretty special."

The six-time All Star is a playoff veteran having appeared in the postseason five times. He is 7-5 with a 3.39 ERA and 112 strikeouts in 16 career starts in the playoffs.

He is 10-8 with a 3.82 ERA in 28 starts this season. The Tigers got minor league prospects outfielder Daz Cameron, right-hander Franklin Perez and catcher Jake Rogers as well as a player to be named later or cash in the deal.

Manager A.J. Hinch loves the experience he brings to the team and joked that he was already 2-0 with the Astros after they won both games of their doubleheader on Saturday after Verlander arrived at Minute Maid Park.

"He's a winner," Hinch said. "We've had a couple of seasons here in a row that we're very proud of that are winning seasons and he's going to create more of that for us ... he's as big of a potential impact as we could have imagined."

Verlander will make his debut for the Astros on Tuesday at Seattle. He's already thought about what it will be like to pitch for team other than the Tigers for the first time in his professional career after he was drafted by Detroit in 2004.

"It will be different in my routine and everything getting ready and just getting accustomed to everything around, but once you step on the mound it's business as usual," he said.

Though he won't actually play for the Astros for a couple more days, he has already received a warm welcome from Houston fans, getting a standing ovation on Saturday when he was introduced and shown on the big screen.

"I'm getting goosebumps right now just thinking about it," he said. "It was really a special moment."

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Baseball , AP Sports - Major League Baseball, AP Sports - Minor League Baseball
© Copyright 2017 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Merkel to address German parliament ahead of election
Chancellor Angela Merkel will address Germany's parliament on the state of the country less than three weeks before an election in which she's seeking a fourth term
2:44AM ( 11 minutes ago )
Authorities: California woman kidnapped by ex-boyfriend
Authorities say a man considered armed and dangerous kidnapped his former girlfriend in California and was spotted in Arizona as he held her against her will
2:35AM ( 20 minutes ago )
S. Korea displays military strength amid North Korean crisis
South Korean warships conducted live-fire exercises at sea as Seoul continued its displays of military capability following U.S. warnings of a "massive military response" after North Korea's latest nuclear test
2:28AM ( 27 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Bam! Arizona's JD Martinez hits 4 home runs, ties MLB record
J.D. Martinez hit four home runs for the Arizona Diamondbacks in a major league record-tying performance at Dodger Stadium. Martinez became the 18th player in big league history to accomplish the feat when he kept connecting against Los Angeles
12:11AM ( 2 hours ago )
Arizona's JD Martinez hits 4 home runs, ties MLB record
J.D. Martinez hit four home runs for the Arizona Diamondbacks in a major league record-tying performance at Dodger Stadium. Martinez became the 18th player in big league history to accomplish the feat when he kept connecting against Los Angeles
12:00AM ( 2 hours ago )
LEADING OFF: Martinez, Diamondbacks try to stay hot
LEADING OFF: J.D. Martinez, Arizona Diamondbacks try to continue streaks
11:54PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Sports
LEADING OFF: Verlander debut for Astros, Indians go for 13th
LEADING OFF: Verlander debut for Astros, Indians go for 13th
8:31PM ( 6 hours ago )
Bauer sharp again as Indians win 12th straight
Bauer sharp, Ramirez homers again as Indians win 12th straight, 5-3 over White Sox
7:25PM ( 7 hours ago )
Suspension of Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez cut to 3 games
Suspension of Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez cut to 3 games after appeal of ban from Detroit brawl
1:43PM ( 13 hours ago )
AP Online Baseball
Springer, Astros beat Mets, Matt Harvey 12-8 in return home
George Springer hit his career-best 30th home run and J.D Davis also went deep to lead Houston over the New York Mets and Matt Harvey 12-8 in a doubleheader opener, the Astros' first game at Minute Maid Park since Hurricane Harvey devastated the area.
7:13PM ( 2 days ago )
Astros return to Houston for 1st game since Harvey
Baseball returned to Houston on Saturday with the Astros giving the flood-ravaged city a few hours of entertainment at the end of a terrible and trying week
6:31PM ( 2 days ago )
Holliday returns with 3-run HR, Yankees beat Red Sox 5-1
Matt Holliday made a smashing return to the Yankees' lineup, hitting a three-run homer that led Masahiro Tanaka and New York over the AL East-leading Boston Red Sox 5-1
4:10PM ( 2 days ago )
AP Sports - Major League Baseball
Brewers hand Dodgers 1st series loss since early June
Jimmy Nelson took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning and the Milwaukee Brewers beat Yu Darvish in his return from the disabled list, defeating the Dodgers 3-2 to hand Los Angeles its first series loss in nearly three months
10:25PM ( 1 week ago )
Hill loses no-hit try on HR in 10th, Pirates top Dodgers 1-0
Dodgers lefty Rich Hill lost his perfect game on an error in the ninth inning, then lost his no-hitter on a leadoff home run in the 10th by Josh Harrison that sent the Pittsburgh Pirates over Los Angeles 1-0
5:31AM ( 1 week ago )
AL East-leading Red Sox obtain OF Rajai Davis from Oakland
The AL East-leading Boston Red Sox have boosted their outfield depth by acquiring speedy Rajai Davis from the Oakland Athletics for a minor league outfielder
8:15PM ( 1 week ago )
AP Sports - Minor League Baseball
Merkel to address German parliament ahead of election
Chancellor Angela Merkel will address Germany's parliament on the state of the country less than three weeks before an election in which she's seeking a fourth term
2:44AM ( 12 minutes ago )
Authorities: California woman kidnapped by ex-boyfriend
Authorities say a man considered armed and dangerous kidnapped his former girlfriend in California and was spotted in Arizona as he held her against her will
2:35AM ( 21 minutes ago )
S. Korea displays military strength amid North Korean crisis
South Korean warships conducted live-fire exercises at sea as Seoul continued its displays of military capability following U.S. warnings of a "massive military response" after North Korea's latest nuclear test
2:28AM ( 27 minutes ago )
Arena thinks US immigration debate fires up opposing players
American coach Bruce Arena thinks the divisive debate over immigration policy in the United States is firing up opposing players and fans
1:50AM ( 1 hour ago )
Asian stocks mixed amid Korea jitters
Stocks in Tokyo and South Korea have fallen while China as South Korean warships carried out military exercises amid jitters over North Korea's weekend nuclear test
1:26AM ( 1 hour ago )