ODU To Retire Justin Verlander's Jersey At Georgetown Game
Nov. 10, 2010
NORFOLK, VA--Old Dominion University Athletic Director Dr. Wood Selig announced today that the University will retire Justin Verlander's ('04) jersey Friday during the ODU-Georgetown men's basketball game at the Ted Constant Convocation Center. Verlander becomes the first baseball player in ODU history to have his jersey retired.
"This is one of the highest honors an institution can bestow upon one of its former student-athletes. I can think of no one more deserving of having a jersey retired than Justin Verlander," says Selig. "Justin was one of, if not the premier college baseball pitcher during his tenure at ODU. He has continued his outstanding pitching career advancing quickly to the highest level with the Detroit Tigers, while serving as a wonderful ambassador for ODU and ODU baseball."
Verlander pitched for the Monarchs from 2002-04 where he won 21 career games and is the all-time strikeout king in ODU, the Colonial Athletic Association and the Commonwealth of Virginia history with 427 in only 335.2 innings of work for an average of 11.5 strikeouts per nine innings.
"This is quite an honor for me, and my family," said Verlander. "ODU has been like a family to me and I had some outstanding memories here as a student athlete. I will always cherish this recognition of being the first baseball player to receive this honor."
Verlander was the CAA Rookie of the Year and freshman All-American in 2002. In 2003, Verlander helped lead Team USA to the Silver medal in the Pan Am Games. The two-time All-CAA selection was a finalist for the National Pitcher of the Year award and was named the University's Male Athlete of the Year by the ODU Alumni Association.
Verlander was the second pick of the 2004 Major League Baseball draft by the Detroit Tigers. Since joining the Tigers organization, he compiled an 8-2 record with a 1.71 ERA in the Florida State League and pitched in the 2005 Future All-Star game. He made his Major League debut on July 4, 2005 against Cleveland.
Verlander currently has an 83-52 major league record with four seasons of 17 or more wins. He won a personal best 19 games in 2009 and led the American League in strikeouts with 269 in 240 innings pitched. He has been selected to three All-Star games, tossed a no-hitter in 2007 against the Milwaukee Brewers and was named the 2006 American League Rookie of the Year.
His No. 35 will also be enshrined on the outfield fence of the Bud Metheny Complex in the spring of 2011.