Verlander garners third POW honor

Verlander garners third POW honor

Verlander garners third POW honor
The regular season has not yet ended, but the awards are already beginning to roll in for Tigers right-hander Justin Verlander.

Verlander and Angels shortstop Eric Aybar were named co-American League Players of the Week, Major League Baseball announced Monday.

Verlander continued his dominant season this past week, striking out 12 in 15 shutout innings to earn his third weekly honor of the season.

Verlander's first start of the week came on Tuesday against the White Sox, as the right-hander threw seven shutout innings to give Detroit its largest division lead (12 1/2 games) since 1984. He also held the White Sox to only six hits, striking out six and walking two.

His second start of the week was even more impressive, as Verlander held the A's to three hits in eight shutout innings in a 3-0 Tigers victory, Verlander's 12th consecutive win. That streak is the longest in the Majors since then-Twins lefty Johan Santana also won 12 straight in 2004.

Verlander now is 24-5 on the season, becoming baseball's first 24-game winner since Randy Johnson in 2002.

Aybar earned co-honors with Verlander -- and his first career weekly award -- by hitting .455 (10-for-22) with four doubles, three homers, five RBIs and eight runs scored. He also finished tied for first in runs scored and total bases (23), was second in slugging percentage (1.045) and tied for second in doubles and homers.

Cash Kruth is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.