Tigers' Verlander puts All-Star outing in past

The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

RHP Justin Verlander reverted to his pre-All-Star game form with eight shutout innings Sunday at Baltimore to win his 10th game of the season. Verlander opened the All-Star Game with a 97-mph fastball, topped out at 101 and ended up allowing five runs to the National League. "I just had to tell myself that's not the type of pitcher that I am," Verlander said. "Anybody who watches the Tigers, follows the Tigers, knows that." You could almost hear the Orioles saying, 'Hey, how about throwing some of that early heat to us?' when Verlander came out spotting his fastball on the corners at 89-92 mph the first few innings, then jumping it up to 97-98 for the last couple innings. "Our horse did what horses do," manager Jim Leyland said. "He was in total command. I understand what he did in the All-Star Game. Nobody wanted to see him pitch 89-90 mph. They wanted 100 and he gave it to them. (But Sunday) he pitched like he can pitch." All four of his pitches were excellent but his curve was outstanding. "I was just kind of knocking off a little bit of rust early," said Verlander, who had 23 first-inning pitches of the 117 he threw in the game. "I was able to settle down and throw consistent strikes after that."

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