Professional baseball pitcher Justin Verlander started dating supemodel Kate Upton in 2013. They have since married and he says she has salvaged his baseball career.

In fact, Verlander says he might not be playing baseball today if his wife had not helped him through a deep depression in 2014. He was injured and not pitching well. Now he's one of the best in baseball again (although the Seattle Mariners hit for a reverse cycle in one inning earlier this week against him and Verlander was tossed after arguing a balk call.)

I digress.

Back in 2014, he had one of the worst seasons of his career.  He had some injuries, thought he might have to retire, plus he was dealing with a deep depression because of it.  But he says Kate helped him through it all.

Quote, "I don't like to talk to people about being hurt.  As athletes, you're not supposed to.  It's an excuse.  But she was someone I could talk to.  Basically [like] a therapist."

He says the fact that she's also famous meant she could relate to the kind of pressure he was under.  And that helped him too.

But wait a second....maybe SHE was the issue with his career tanking in the first place?

They started dating right before the 2013 season which is where and when her "assets" were potentially becoming a distraction?

Justin ended up working with a trainer to change the way he pitched . . . he got traded from Detroit to Houston last year, was absolutely playoff dominant, won a World Series and he's one of the best pitchers in baseball again this year.