Verlander now aligned for possible Game 163 showdown with Sale
Since the Tigers won the season series, 12-6, they’d host the one-game playoff on Thursday, Oct. 4, the day after the end of the regular season.
The Tigers have for a week or so had their rotation aligned for that eventuality. Justin Verlander, whose last regular-season start is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 29, at Minnesota, would be in line to start either Game 163 on Thursday, or potentially a Wild Card matchup on Friday, Oct. 5, or Game 1 of the American League Division Series on either Saturday or Sunday, Oct. 6 or 7.
On Tuesday, according to MLB.com’s Scott Merkin, White Sox manager Robin Ventura shuffled his rotation around to align Chris Sale — his starter from Monday — for the same possible scenarios. Like the Tigers had to do with Drew Smyly for Sunday’s doubleheader, Ventura inserted a sixth starter in the rotation to get it aligned properly, giving Wednesday’s start to Hector Santiago.