It’s been a year of milestones for Detroit Tiger’s starting pitcher Justin Verlander. 2011 saw Verlander record his 1,000th strikeout and 100th win. On May 2 he tossed his second career no-hitter, losing his bid for a perfect game with an eighth inning walk, his only blunder on the day. Verlander didn’t give up a hit until the sixth inning of his following outing, compiling 15 2/3 innings of hitless baseball over three starts. The Detroit ace struck out a career-high 14 batters versus the Diamondbacks on June 25. Verlander flirted with no-hitters multiple times later in the season, not allowing a hit through seven innings on both June 14 and July 31.
Verlander’s numbers are off the charts. He leads Major League Baseball in wins (24), innings pitched (251), strikeouts (250), WHIP (0.92), and hits per nine innings (6.2). He leads the American League in ERA (2.40) and win-loss percentage (24-5, .828).
If being named to his fourth All-Star team doesn’t push him over the top, his 7.0 WAR does.
Ladies and gentleman there is no debate, Justin Verlander is the American League Cy Young.