While the Chicago Cubs didn’t end up getting Justin Verlander, it appears the two sides were at least talking about the former Cy Young winner. It also appears that if he had his druthers, the former Detroit Tiger and now Houston Astro would have liked to have come to the defending World Series champs.

Shortly after the trade between the Tigers and Astros went down, details of the trade began to hit the web. Those details show that even the Astros knew Verlander wasn’t all that excited to be a member of the team that has the best record in the American League.

Astros owner Jim Crane apparently told the media that Verlander “was a little reluctant and eventually made the right decision." All of this matters because the pitcher has been in the majors and with his current team long enough to decide whether or not he is going to get traded and to whom. He did eventually say he would be willing to go Houston but apparently not before he got final word that the Cubs and Tigers could not work out a deal.

What was the right choice

It appears that while Crane is crediting Verlander with making the “right choice” it was the only choice he really could make. Either the pitcher was going to accept the trade to the Astros, or he was going to remain a Tiger. Because he’s the consummate competitor, he didn’t want to stay on a team that had no chance of making the playoffs this year.

That means that the “right” choice, was really the only option he had. The right choice, in this scenario was simply that he accepted a trade at all. Had he had the choice to go to the Cubs, it appears that would have been the choice he made.

Jon Morosi confirms that Verlander was attempting to let talks between the Cubs and Tigers “play out” before he said yes or not to moving to Texas.

In the end, that reluctance might have helped his old team, as the Astros had to offer up plenty, including one of the top prospects in baseball, in order to get the hurler.

Cubs were close to eye-popping rotation

Had Verlander been able to come to the Cubs, it certainly would have made their rotation impressive. A playoff rotation of Jon Lester, Justin Verlander, Jake Arrieta and Kyle Hendricks (or Quintana?) would have been considered one of, if not the best in baseball. Now Chicago Cubs fans will just have to wonder what might have been as they make do with what they have. That rotation is still among the best when all the pitchers are pitching like the should be pitching.