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Justin Verlander

When I watched the highlights of Justin Verlander's no-hitter, the fantasy player in me said, "Sell high!"  After a few handfuls of seconds in contemplation, that reaction was about a year late.

In June 2006 following consecutives starts against the Yanks and White Sox where he allowed 10 ER in 11 innings against two of the best the AL had to offer, Verlander still had a 3.35 ERA on the strength of his previous two months worth of work.   That would have been the perfect time to hear calls of selling high.  Fortunately, for those who bought or refused to sell, Verlander rolled off four consecutive wins and 8 out of 9 overall.  By time time that run finished, it was mid-August, and Verlander could be comfortably sold in a bail trade.

After another few more minutes of thought, it is clear that Justin verlander is no longer a sell-high player, but one that is a buy-high one at all times.  The no-hitter only confirms that valuation.  I caution that his 2007 numbers so far are very similar to his 2006 ones with the acception of HRs allowed and BAA.  In 2006, he allowed 21 HRs in 184 innings and a .266 BAA.  In 2007, he has allowed just 7 HRs in 84 innings and a .212 BAA.

Some FYI from Buster Olney:

Imagine a rotation built on the young core of Jake Peavy, Chris Young and Verlander, if only the Padres had used the No. 1 pick in the 2004 draft to take the right-hander from Old Dominion, rather than local prep infielder Matt Bush, who just last week was converted into a pitcher because he had struggled so badly, as John Maffei writes. Verlander was widely viewed as the consensus No. 1 pick in the draft, and the Padres passed on him because of doubts about whether they could sign him.