Barring a “miracle,” Justin Verlander will remain with the Tigers through this Monday’s non-waiver trade deadline, sources tell Jon Heyman of FanRag. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the chief sticking point is Verlander’s contract, which pays him $28MM a season through 2019. Potential trade partners “want no part” of that contract, Heyman writes.
I wrote about the complexities of a potential Verlander deal earlier this week, noting Verlander’s contract, age (34) and underwhelming 2017 performance (4.50 ERA, 8.7 K/9 and 4.1 BB/9 over 124 innings). The Cubs have been the team most frequently connected to Verlander, and they could conceivably afford him, but his contract remains an issue. To facilitate a deal, the Tigers likely would either have to take on a significant portion of the contract, settle for a very modest talent return, or both. In addition, Verlander has a full no-trade clause. Heyman suggests Verlander could clear waivers, making an August trade a possibility, but he’s more likely to be dealt next winter.