Sports | October 24, 2017 11:03 am

Clayton Kershaw, Justin Verlander Will Be Deciding Factors in World Series

How the two 'defining pitchers of this generation' will face off and match up in October baseball.

Spending his first 11 seasons in the majors with the Detroit Tigers, Justin Verlander immediately established himself as a premiere arm—one of the most dominant in the game. He took home rookie of the year honors in 2006, and landed a rare MVP–Cy Young pairing in 2011. And as far as down years were concerned, they were few and far between.

Then Clayton Kershaw arrived—ironically, in the same year that Verlander had his dual-award coming-out party. The Dodgers’ arm was equally as dominant, winning 21 games that season and capturing the National League Cy Young. He’s followed that up with two more Cy Young performances, adding MVP, too, during the 2014 season.

His lifetime ERA is minuscule compared to Verlander’s—but he has been an altogether less dominant pitcher in the postseason. And Verlander has done nothing but show his worth since he joined the Houston Astros in a late-season deal. He all but carried the team during its playoff run, giving them the room they needed for their bats to wake up, argues The Ringer.

But you can’t count out Kershaw. Despite his rocky postseason numbers and a few years to get his feet under him, he’s clearly been the most dominant pitcher in both leagues since 2012. As The Ringer notes, counting ’11’s stats, his numbers match up well with another famous Dodger pitcher: Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax. That should tell you all you need to know.

That said, Kershaw is making his first World Series appearance, whereas this is Verlander’s third. Tune in tonight to watch Kershaw take on Verlander’s teammate—and 2015 Cy Young winner—Dallas Keuchel.