Monday, April 25, 2011

How high can Verlander climb?

Justin Verlander became the 15th Detroit Tigers pitcher to have 1,000 strikeouts when he fanned eight Chicago White Sox on Friday in a 9-3 victory at Comerica Park.
It should not take Verlander long to have 14th place to himself; the 6-foot-5 right-hander is tied with Joe Coleman, who pitched for Detroit from 1971-1976, at an even 1,000.
Verlander could make a steady climb up the Tigers’ list if he has an average Verlander season in 2011.
The Tigers’ ace averaged 191 strikeouts over the first five full seasons of his career.
He has 35 so far in 2011. Another 155 strikeouts would give Verlander 1,155 and push him past Denny McLain, into ninth place on the Tigers’ list. McLain (1963-70) struck out 1,150.
After he passes Coleman, Verlander can take aim at Frank Lary, who fanned 1,031, and John Hiller, who struck out 1,036.
The Tigers’ career list: Mickey Lolich 2,679, Jack Morris 1,980, Hal Newhouser 1,770, Tommy Bridges 1,674, Jim Bunning 1,406, George Mullin 1,380, Hooks Dauss 1,201, Dizzy Trout 1,199, Denny McLain 1,150, Bill Donovan 1,079, Virgil Trucks 1,046, John Hiller 1,036, Frank Lary 1,031, Joe Coleman 1,000, Justin Verlander 1,000.
At 190 strikeouts per year, Verlander would need eight seasons past 2011 to catch Lolich for first place.
Verlander is scheduled to make his next start Wednesday against Seattle at Comerica Park.


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