Tigers

Workload, Expectations Still Same For Verlander

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Justin Verlander #35 of the Detroit Tigers (Getty Images)

Justin Verlander #35 of the Detroit Tigers (Getty Images)

LAKELAND, Fla. — Every now and then, Justin Verlander will read that some team or another is thinking of going with a six-man starting rotation.

“I’m like, ‘What the heck?'” Verlander said Thursday. “I’d like to try every four days.”

You know what? I bet he could do it. Verlander threw a major-league high 115.9 pitches per start in 2011 — the most by a big-league pitcher since Randy Johnson averaged 116.7 in 2001, according to research through baseball-reference.com.

You know what? I bet he could throw even more.

And in an era where heavy workloads followed by short winters always seem to carry a huge risk for starting pitchers, I tend to believe the Tigers people who were insisting Thursday that Verlander could be even better in 2012 than he was in his brilliant 2011 season.

— More from CBS Sports here

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