Verlander should be considered as AL MVP

Justin Verlander, pitcher for the Detroit Tigers, has been nothing but dominate this season and will most likely runaway with the Cy Young Award in the American League.

But he should be considered for another award: the American League Most Valuable Player award.

It is believed that because Verlander is a pitcher and not a field player that he should not qualify as the American League MVP. But lets examine the definition of a MVP.

The most valuable player is considered the most outstanding player in the league — a player whose team could not survive without them.

Verlander has the first part of the definition checked off his list.

His stats speak for themselves: Currently leading the league with 21 wins, a 2.34 ERA and 0.91 WHIP, leading in strikeouts with a 224, a no-hitter and almost another that was unfortunately broken up in the eighth inning.

On to the second part of the definition — without Verlander the Tigers would not be leading the AL Central, and they wouldn’t even be close to being in contention for the division.

Every time the Detroit Tigers need to stop a mini-losing streak or need a big win, Verlander is there. Every time he gives up a hit and it is thought he’s about to crack, he comes right back with consecutive strikeouts to end the inning. Every time Verlander is doubted, he proves every one wrong.

The other candidates for league MVP — the Boston Red Sox’s Adrian Gonzalez and Jacoby Ellsbury, the New York Yankee’s Curtis Granderson and Toronto’s Jose Bautista — all have their flaws.

Gonzalez may be having a great year, but the Red Sox would not be hurting without him, considering Ellsbury is in the candidacy and teammate David Ortiz could be considered just as well.

Granderson is hitting the ball far and hard, but he isn’t beating Bautista in home runs and Gonzalez has a better batting average than him — so statistically, he should be out of the running. He has the same thing going against him as Gonzalez does with the Yankee’s stacked line-up.

Bautista is having another MVP-type year, but he plays for a Toronto team that isn’t in contention.

Ellsbury is a tough one and should be very high up in the MVP voting, but like Gonzalez he has a team around him that is built to produce runs and they could very well function without him as they did last year when he was out on an injury for most of the season.

The only way Verlander could fall out of contention is if he somehow lost all five remaining starts he’s scheduled to have — which is next to impossible. Chances are high that he will win the five remaining and become the first pitcher to win 25 games since the Oakland Athletics’ Bob Welch did in 1990, which would only solidify his candidacy.

Verlander is arguably the most important part of the Tigers and has the statistics to prove it.

Not only does he deserve the Cy Young award, but he also has a legitimate shot at becomming the American League Most Valuable Player.