Location is key for struggling Verlander

Location is key for struggling Verlander

ARLINGTON -- Manager Jim Leyland talks every day about getting the Tigers' starting pitching going, and that starts with ace Justin Verlander, who will next pitch in Tuesday's series opener against Minnesota.

Verlander is off to a poor start with a 6.95 ERA, but the Tigers have won three of his four starts. Still, they need better than his 125 pitches in five innings that he gave the team Thursday in Anaheim.

Gerald Laird, who catches every Verlander start, said the ace will get going and that there's one main thing that ails him.

"His location is a little off, that's all," Laird said.

One telling number supports Laird's theory. Verlander threw 85 strikes against the Angels, but L.A. hitters were able to foul off 37 of them.