|Justin Verlander will not be pitching on short rest in Game 4. (US Presswire)|
SAN FRANCISCO -- Tigers ace Justin Verlander was roughed up in Game 1 of the 2012 World Series. But because he is (yes, still) the best pitcher in baseball and threw only four innings, there seem to be some who can't quite grasp the concept that Tigers manager Jim Leyland has four excellent starting pitchers and, thus, will not alter his rotation based upon merely one loss in a best-of-seven series.
So, once again, Leyland had to reiterate in his pregame press conference Thursday that Verlander will not be pitching on short rest in Game 4.
"Well, he's coming back in Game 5, I hope," Leyland said when asked if Verlander was able to come back "early."
Leyland was then asked specifically about Verlander working Game 4. His answer was pretty straightforward and simple.
Also worth noting: Yes, it's true that four innings is a short outing from Verlander in terms of innings pitched, but not all innings are created equal. Verlander threw 98 pitches. He's usually well into triple digits, but 98 pitches is nothing to sneeze at. It's not like he threw only 45.
I'd love to say now it's time to move on with the realization that Leyland will not alter his four-man rotation -- assuming no weather issues -- but if the Tigers lose Game 2 and Game 3, surely there will be a push from some fans and media alike that Verlander should pitch Game 4. Until that happens, though, consider this matter put to bed. Verlander is not going to start on short rest.