Known for his sinking fastball and good curveball, he made his MLB debut in 2009 with the Detroit Tigers and finished third in Rookie of the Year voting for the season. He won the 2016 AL Cy Young Award after leading the MLB in wins with 22 as a member of the Boston Red Sox.
He attended Seton Hall Preparatory School in New Jersey.
He originally committed to play baseball at the University of North Carolina but instead chose to pursue a pro career with the Tigers.
His brother Jake is also a baseball player.
Shortstop defensive wizard Adam Everett was his teammate on the Tigers.