The Houston Astros have set their starting rotation for the 2022 season.
For the first time since the beginning of the 2020 season, Houston’s rotation will feature a certain former MVP and Cy Young winner.
Justin Verlander is back and ready to roll for at least one more season with the Astros.
Unfortunately, he won’t be starting Opening Day, but he is back in the Astros’ rotation.
Verlander will take the mound on Saturday, April 9, while the Astros are on the road taking on the Los Angeles Angels, meaning he is third up in the rotation for that series.
Framber Valdez will start Opening Day for the Astros.
The Astros will likely line up the starting rotation this way against the Angels, Dusty Baker said:
Opening Day: Framber Valdez
Fri: Jake Odorizzi
Sat: Justin Verlander
Sun: José Urquidy
— Chandler Rome (@Chandler_Rome) March 30, 2022
JV Is Back
While it would have been nice to have Verlander start on Opening Day and have a little extra hype around his return, it is good that he’s back and he’s healthy for 2022.
When healthy, the 39-year-old can still be one of the dominant pitchers in all of baseball.
He was injured one start into the 2020 season and underwent Tommy John surgery, which kept him out for all of 2021 as well.
His last full season was 2019, a year in which he went 21-6 and posted a 2.58 ERA on his way to being named the American League Cy Young Award winner.
Now, Verlander is back and ready to show the baseball world that he is still more than capable of pitching at a high level.
He brings big game experience to the table and the Astros should benefit almost immediately from his return.
We’ll see if he can stay healthy and return to his old form.
The Astros will need him at his best if they plan to return to the World Series this year.