MLB Rumors: Justin Verlander Clears Waivers; Tigers Free To Trade Him

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Justin Verlander might want to keep his suitcases close.

Verlander’s name was tossed around often in the days leading up to the July 31 MLB non-waiver trade deadline, though the Detroit Tigers ultimately decided to hold on to their star pitcher for the time being. But the six-time All-Star was placed on revocable waivers Wednesday, and now it looks like he cleared them, according to the Detroit Free Press’ Anthony French.

So what’s it all mean? The short version is that Verlander, once again, could be dealt to any team. But seeing him traded probably isn’t any more likely now than it was a week ago.

The 34-year-old is scheduled to make $28 million in both 2018 and 2019, and has a $22 million vesting option for 2020. That wouldn’t be a problem if Verlander was same pitcher he was in his prime, but he’s clearly not.

After a bounce-back season in 2016, Verlander has gone 6-7 this season while posting a 4.29 ERA, the second worst of his career. His 126 strikeouts are fine, but his 1.43 WHIP proves he no longer can get batters out as efficiently as he once could.

Still, if the Tigers are willing to eat a large chunk of his salary, a team like the Chicago Cubs — who showed interest in Verlander ahead of the deadline — still could make a move.

Thumbnail photo via Rick Osentoski/USA TODAY Sports Images

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