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#pounditThursday, March 30, 2023

Justin Verlander could reunite with notable former teammate?

Justin Verlander smiling

Jul 19, 2022; Los Angeles, CA, USA; American League pitcher Justin Verlander (35) of the Houston Astros and wife Kate Upton during the Red Carpet Show at L.A. Live. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Verlander may be running it back with a former co-star … roughly a decade later.

Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported on Sunday that the reigning AL Cy Young winner Verlander has spoken with the New York Mets about possibly signing with them. The two sides are said to have met over Zoom last week.

Verlander, who has been with the Houston Astros since 2017, is one of several quality right-handed starters on the free agent market this offseason. Of course, the Mets are already trying to re-sign the single best one of those options in Jacob deGrom, so their interest in Verlander may be for a Plan B in case deGrom walks.

There is an additional connection here for Verlander as well. Another Mets righty, veteran Max Scherzer, was Verlander’s star teammate back in their Detroit days. The two formed a menacing 1-2 punch atop the Tigers rotation during their time together from 2010 to 2014. In that span, they combined for six total All-Star selections, two Cy Young Awards (one apiece), an MVP award (for Verlander in 2011), and an AL pennant (for the Tigers in 2012).

Now obviously, it wouldn’t look nearly the same in 2023 now that Verlander is 39 years old and Scherzer is 38. But going to the Mets for a reunion with Scherzer might be more fitting for Verlander than going to this other team that he has recently been linked to.


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