Culture / Sporting Life

Justin Verlander’s Sweet Tribute to Kate Upton, Daughter Shows the Astros Easily Top the Taylor Swift Sports Dating Frenzy

No One's Wondering If This Celebrity Couple Is Real Or Doubting An Ageless Ace's Impact

BY // 10.08.23

An unusually smiley Justin Verlander keeps looking up to the Minute Maid Park stands as he’s interviewed live on national TV. To a luxury suite where Verlander’s wife Kate Upton and the couple’s 4-year-old daughter Genevieve are waving down to him.

It’s a sweet scene. One that offers another side of Verlander, the Houston Astros’ 40-year-old ageless ace who still dominates teams with a stone-faced intensity. FS1 reporter Tom Verducci cannot help but ask Verlander about it on the broadcast.

“It’s always a pleasure to look up and see my family,” Verlander says. “Especially my daughter. We have a day game (for Game 1 of the ALDS) so she’s able to come. To see her up there and be able to smile and say I love you is just what it’s about.”

This is what an actual grownup sports romance looks like. Forget the endless frenzy and breathless (and sometimes tasteless) speculation over Taylor Swift and Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce’s dating. No one is wondering if Justin Verlander and Kate Upton’s relationship is fake or not. They’ve built a real life together, somehow largely staying out of the paparazzi spotlight while doing it.

Verlander talked about Upton and Genevieve during the national broadcast of the Astros’ Game 1 win over the Minnesota Twins. But that’s not something he does often at all. And in this case, he only does in the midst of the sweetest of family wave moments.

With mom and daughter waving back and blowing kisses. Genevieve is decked out in a sparkling jacket that any near 5-year-old would adore. Upton is wearing an orange sweeter (not the Astros jacket one she’s made famous) and jeans.

Justin Verlander, Kate Upton and their daughter Genevieve have a way of making their Houston moments count. Now Justin Verlander is back in town thanks to Astros owner Jim Crane's trade push, (Photo by F. Carter Smith)
Justin Verlander, Kate Upton and their daughter Genevieve have a way of making their Houston moments count. Now Justin Verlander is back winning playoff games for the ‘Stros thanks to Astros owner Jim Crane’s trade push, (Photo by F. Carter Smith)

Verlander’s also just thrown six shutout innings in his 35th playoff start, helping push Houston to the kind of early advantage that’s essential in these dangerous short best-of-five early round series. For Verlander that’s now a stretch of 19 innings where he has given up only one combined run. This ever recalibrating ace seems to have found something late in the season, a way to adjust to Major League Baseball’s new pitch clock, less pitcher recovery time world.

Give Justin Brooks Verlander enough time and he’ll almost always come up with a viable solution.

“I don’t know,” Verlander says. “I guess you just adapt and do whatever you can to be successful, I think. In my career, I’ve changed drastically multiple times.

“So I think, to your point, I think what feels really good is that when you start off struggling and are able to make some adjustments and find it.”

“It’s always a pleasure to look up and see my family. Especially my daughter. . . To see her up there and be able to smile and say I love you is just what it’s about.” — Astros ace Justin Verlander

Verlander certainly has found something of a sweet spot in this unexpected return to Houston and the franchise where he’s already won two rings. Verlander, Upton and Genevieve have always loved their Houston life.

It’s an authentic life with real friends not celebrity entourages. Daily publicist consults and brand strategizing not needed. Let the Swifties and those crazy kids Taylor and Travis enjoy the circus. This is something deeper than that, something worth getting all smile-happy and wavy for.

Part of the Special Series:

PaperCity - Astros Playoffs
Stay in the Moment with JW Marriot
JW Marriott Dallas Arts District
Learn More

Featured Properties

Swipe
X
X