Houston Astros

Justin Verlander counters report he will miss rest of season

Justin Verlander vehemently denies he’s out for the season with an injury.

Don’t tell Justin Verlander he’s done playing in the 60-game shortened 2020 MLB season.

The Houston Astros pitcher was reportedly ruled out for the rest of the year due to an injury in his throwing elbow. Since the regular season will only run for slightly over two months, any sort of arm injury like this would have surely ruled him out for the season. Some people argued this was karma for the Astros banging on trash cans. Too bad Verlander isn’t buying the report he’s done.

Verlander tweeted the following out from his own account on Sunday evening: “The report that I’m currently missing the rest of the season is not accurate. There is a forearm strain… I’m hopeful that with some rest it will heal and I’ll be able to return soon. Thank you for all the well wishes.” Verlander remains optimistic, but he doesn’t have a lot of time to return to the mound this season.

What if Justin Verlander is not in fact done for the season for the Astros?

If it is just a forearm strain and Verlander can return, this will help the Astros win the AL Pennant again and play in their third World Series in four seasons. Houston won the 2017 World Series over the Los Angeles Dodgers, but fell to the Washington Nationals in last year’s Fall Classic. If Verlander can’t go the rest of the way, then the Astros’ rotation goes from menacing to middling.

Of course, there will be eight teams playing in the AL postseason, as the MLB has expanded from five teams to eight in the one-of-a-kind, coronavirus-shortened season. The Astros don’t have to win the AL West to ensure they’re getting in. If they finish in second place behind someone like the Oakland Athletics, they’re still getting in. There are also two other Wild Card berths available.

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Given the sign-stealing scandal that was uncovered this offseason, nobody outside of Houston likes the Astros. They didn’t win the World Series but are the most despised team in the big leagues right now. Verlander may be an eight-time MLB All-Star, a two-time AL Cy Young award winner and an AL MVP, but many baseball fans view him and his Houston teammates as cheaters.

Verlander hasn’t ruled out playing the rest of the season, as he vehemently denied the report.

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