BOSTON (CBS) — The Red Sox’ season-ending series against the Astros may have gotten a lot more interesting. Houston acquired Tigers starter Justin Verlander on Thursday night just before baseball’s waiver trade deadline.
The Tigers received pitcher Franklin Perez, catcher Jake Rogers, and outfielder Daz Cameron to complete the deal. The 34-year-old Verlander is 10-8 on the season with a 3.82 ERA, but is 5-2 with a 2.41 ERA and 78 strikeouts in 67.1 innings since the All-Star break.
The big righty is added to an Astros rotation that also boasts fellow former Cy Young winner Dallas Kuechel but was in need of a frontline arm to boost their chances of getting to the World Series out of the American League.
The Astros (80-53) currently have a 4.5 game lead over the Red Sox (76-58) for the best record in the AL. Depending on the September performance of the Indians (76-56), the Sox and Astros could end up playing for home field advantage in the AL playoffs when they face each other in a four-game series at Fenway Park from Sept. 28 – Oct. 1.
Regardless of how the playoff seeding shakes out at the end of the regular season, Verlander and the Astros could could very well end up facing Chris Sale and the Red Sox in October.