Verlander, seeking 1st World Series win, opens for Astros

  • Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander works out ahead of Game 1 of the baseball World Series between the Houston Astros and the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, in Houston. Game 1 of the series starts Friday. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

  • Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander works out ahead of Game 1 of the baseball World Series between the Houston Astros and the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, in Houston. Game 1 of the series starts Friday. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

  • Philadelphia Phillies manager Rob Thomson speaks to the media ahead of Game 1 of the baseball World Series between the Houston Astros and the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, in Houston. Game 1 of the series starts Friday. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

  • Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander speaks to media ahead of Game 1 of the baseball World Series between the Houston Astros and the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, in Houston. Game 1 of the series starts Friday. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

  • Houston Astros manager Dusty Baker Jr. (12) watches batting practice ahead of Game 1 of the baseball World Series between the Houston Astros and the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, in Houston. Game 1 of the series starts Friday. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

HOUSTON — Justin Verlander was answering questions about his start for the Houston Astros in Friday night’s World Series opener when the head of the opposition’s baseball staff took the unorthodox step of walking into the interview room to extend a hand.