Kate Upton and Justin Verlander's Relationship Timeline
From Sports Illustrated swimsuit covers to World Series wins, Kate Upton and Justin Verlander are each other's biggest supporters.
The model and the Houston Astros pitcher first met in 2012 during a commercial shoot. After a few years of dating, Verlander proposed to Upton in 2016 and the couple tied the knot on Nov. 4, 2017 — just days after baseball pro won the World Series.
The following year, Upton and Verlander welcomed their first child together, a daughter named Genevieve. Now, the pair are frequently seen supporting each other in their respective careers, whether it's celebrating Upton's PEOPLE's Sexiest Woman of the Year award or watching Verlander play baseball. The family of three even made a rare red carpet appearance at the MLB All-Stars Red Carpet Show in July 2022.
From their first chance meeting to raising daughter Genevieve together, here's everything to know about Kate Upton and Justin Verlander's relationship.
2012: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander meet on the set of a video game commercial
Upton didn't know she was meeting her future husband when she filmed a commercial for Major League Baseball 2K12 with Verlander in 2013. During the commercial, the model had to turn away Verlander when he tried to sneak into an exclusive club while wearing a disguise.
January 2013: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander go on a New Year's vacation to St. Thomas
The following January, several outlets reported that the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit model and the MLB star were seen together in St. Thomas.
However, during an interview with Fox News 2 the next month, Upton denied the dating rumors and said, "Actually, I'm single right now," per E! Online.
June 2013: Kate Upton starts dating Maksim Chmerkovskiy
After putting romance rumors with Verlander to rest, Upton began dating Dancing with the Stars pro Maksim Chmerkovskiy in June 2013. The dancer celebrated Upton's birthday with an intimate dinner in N.Y.C on June 10, and the pair were seen holding hands in the city in September.
However, by December, a source told PEOPLE that they had split.
January 31, 2014: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander are spotted getting cozy again
Upton and Verlander posed for photos at the 2014 GQ Super Bowl Party in N.Y.C., showing that they were back on. Fans had speculated for months that they were a couple again, thanks to their frequent Twitter interactions and her multiple appearances at his baseball games in Detroit.
May 17, 2014: Kate Upton posts a photo with Justin Verlander on Instagram
In May 2014, Upton posted a black-and-white photo of her and Verlander at Fenway Park, captioned, "Thanks for showing us around the #greenmonster #fenwaypark."
December 18, 2014: Kate Upton jokes with Justin Verlander about winning PEOPLE's Sexiest Woman of the Year
James Devaney/GC Images
Upton took home the statuette for PEOPLE's Sexiest Woman at the first-ever PEOPLE Magazine Awards, giving a funny speech that included a shout-out to her boyfriend, Verlander.
"Um, you're welcome, Justin," she said.
Spring 2016: Justin Verlander proposes to Kate Upton
Verlander quietly proposed to Upton before the start of the 2016 baseball season. Although the couple wouldn't announce the news for another month.
May 2, 2016: Kate Upton shows off her custom engagement ring on the Met Gala red carpet
Upton sparkled on the red carpet at the 2016 Met Gala, wearing a glittery, sequined Topshop gown. But her most eye-catching accessory was her new diamond engagement ring from Verlander.
"I'm really excited, he asked me right before the season started so we've been keeping it on the down low for quite a while," she told E! News of her engagement to Verlander. "So I'm excited to finally be able to share it with the world!"
Verlander worked with jeweler Anita Ko to create a custom engagement ring, putting a unique twist on the single solitaire by setting the center stone inside delicate "swags" of pavé diamonds on a diamond-encrusted band.
"Justin and I collaborated on creating the most perfect one-of-a-kind ring that is rare and of exceptional quality, just like their love," Ko told PEOPLE.
February 15, 2017: Justin Verlander congratulates Kate Upton on her third Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover
After Upton landed her third Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover in 2017 (which actually included three different covers!), Verlander tweeted his support for his supermodel fiancée, acknowledging how lucky he was to have her.
"Congrats to my amazing fiancée @KateUpton on being named to the #siswim17 cover! You're so incredible! #luckyman #happyvalentinesday #thrice," he wrote.
Verlander didn't stop there. He went on to share a video from the cover model's shoot on Twitter and posted a photo of the covers on Instagram.
February 17, 2017: Kate Upton talks about her future with Justin Verlander
Speaking to PEOPLE Now, Upton opened up on her wedding plans and more, saying, "We are getting married, but it's really hard. Everyone's always like, invite whoever you want, do whatever you want, don't feel bad about it, but you feel bad!"
She also seemed conflicted about choosing the honeymoon destination.
"I want to go on a safari for the honeymoon so bad, but he's not … I don't know," Upton said. "Every year I tell him I want to go on a safari and every year for a gift he'll get me like a stuffed animal tiger. Or like flowers from Africa, not the same."
Upton also didn't shy away from her opinions on starting a family with Verlander, saying, "We definitely want kids, but hopefully not anytime soon, but of course, you know, oopsies happen!"
March 2017: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander host a pet adoption event with the MLB
The couple combined their love of baseball and furry friends to host the Grand Slam Adoption event in Lakeland, Florida.
Upton spoke to PEOPLE about the event, saying, "Justin keeps a keen eye on me at the event — he makes sure I don't fall fast for a dog. But actually, I have to keep a keen eye on him too, for the same reason!"
May 2017: Kate Upton says her relationship with Justin Verlander is her "favorite thing about my life right now"
PEOPLE spoke with Upton after the Pronovias bridal fashion show in Barcelona, and the model opened up about Verlander and wedding dress shopping.
When asked what Verlander would think of her dress choice, she replied, "Justin is so supportive and I don't think that he would honestly have a strong opinion in that way. He's a lover, not a judge."
She went on to call him "my perfect partner," saying, "Our relationship is my favorite thing about my life right now."
November 4, 2017: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander get married in Italy, days after his World Series win
Only a few short days after Verlander won the World Series with the Houston Astros, he and Upton hosted their wedding in Tuscany, Italy. It was an intimate, outdoor ceremony, and Upton wore a classic long-sleeved lace white Valentino gown.
For the reception, Upton changed into a sheer, beaded gown designed by Christy Rilling Studio.
March 2018: Justin Verlander opens up to PEOPLE about his wedding
In a conversation with PEOPLE, Verlander got candid about marrying Upton.
"It was a very special moment. It was pretty storybook. The moment the gates opened and I saw her walking down the aisle, I lost it. She looked so beautiful, and I had been looking forward to that day for a long time," Verlander told PEOPLE of their Italian wedding. "All the emotions came to me, and it was everything I had imagined it would be and more."
Verlander said when it was time for Upton to walk down the aisle, he looked around to let the moment sink in.
"Being able to look out and see everyone that we love and her walking down the aisle was a very special moment that I'll never forget. I'm truly blessed to be able to share these experiences with my best friend, and all our close friends and family were there," he added.
July 14, 2018: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander announce they're expecting a baby
Upton shared their pregnancy news in a cute Instagram post, where the supermodel posed on a balcony in Miami. "#PregnantinMiami," she wrote, tagging Verlander and adding a sunburst and heart emoji.
"You're going to be the most amazing Mom!!" Verlander commented, sharing his excitement about the news. "I can't wait to start this new journey with you! You're the most thoughtful, loving, caring, and strong woman I've ever met! I'm so proud that our little one is going to be raised in this world by a woman like you! I love you so much."
August 2018: Justin Verlander says Kate Upton "saved his life"
Verlander spoke to Bleacher Report about his relationship with Upton, opening up about how she helped him get through a tough spot.
"She was instrumental in me not … like, jumping off a bridge," Verlander said. "I was depressed and kind of just upset at the world and trying to hide my own s---."
In 2014, two years after the couple began dating, Verlander was suffering from a shoulder injury. According to the outlet, as a pitcher for the Detroit Tigers at the time, he was booed by fans, and some social media users even tried to blame the way Verlander was playing on his relationship with Upton.
"I don't like to talk to people about being hurt. As athletes, you're not supposed to … But [Upton] was someone I could talk to. I mean, basically a therapist. Somebody I could trust with … worries about my career. Worries about, 'Can I make it?' Worries about what I'm going through to get back," Verlander told Bleacher Report. "Who knows, if I'm even here if it wasn't for her?"
October 2018: Kate Upton shows off her baby bump at Justin Verlander's baseball games
Upton attended a few of Verlander's baseball games at Minute Maid Park in Houston, where Verlander pitched for the Astros.
The model had spoken to PEOPLE a month earlier, saying that Verlander was excited to see what her pregnancy cravings would be.
"He kept being like, 'I can't wait for the pickle run in the middle of the night.' I'm like, 'Okay.' But I haven't had anything. I'm fine with all food," Upton said.
November 7, 2018: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander welcome a baby
On Nov. 7, 2018, Upton gave birth to her and Verlander's daughter Genevieve, sharing the news via Instagram.
"Genevieve Upton Verlander 💗 11.7.18," the new mom wrote as the caption, sharing the baby's name alongside a black-and-white photo of the couple's first child.
Verlander posted a picture of his daughter's tiny hand, held between his and Upton's fingers, and captioned it, "Welcome to the world Genevieve Upton Verlander. You stole my ❤️ the first second I met you!!! 11.7.2018."
February 2019: Justin Verlander opens up about fatherhood
During a spring training session in West Palm Beach, Florida, the Houston Astros pitcher spoke about his life as a dad.
"I get out [to golf] occasionally, but not quite as much," Verlander said. "[Having a baby] definitely changes the afternoons a little bit."
He added, "I get pretty excited to go home and see her smiling. It seems like every day it's something new, so it's been a lot of fun."
March 2019: Justin Verlander says he'll be pitching into his forties so Genevieve can watch him play
Kate Upton Instagram
In March 2019, Verlander spoke to PEOPLE about fatherhood and how he wants to keep playing baseball long enough for Genevieve to watch him.
"It's the most amazing experience in my life and to be a dad, I really can't even put into words how much I love this little girl," the pitcher told PEOPLE. "It goes so quickly, it's been an amazing experience that I'm not taking for granted. I'm relishing every moment."
Verlander also added that he would like his daughter to have memories of him playing.
"I would like to be able to play long enough that my daughter can see me and remember me playing baseball when she grows older. Maybe if anything, it's going to push me to stay in shape and stay healthy, and be a good pitcher as long as I possibly can. I want her to be able to remember me on the field."
He continued, saying he didn't expect Genevieve to follow in his footsteps. "She can be her own woman. I'm not going to be putting any pressure on her. She can do what she wants and I'm excited to see. She's got her whole life ahead of her. I can't even picture what. … We can all sit here and speculate, it's fun. She's got big hands so maybe she'll play the piano, I don't know! Possibilities are endless."
October 2019: Kate Upton shares a photo of Genevieve at one of Justin Verlander's finals games
Kate Upton Instagram
In 2019, Upton brought baby Genevieve to watch her dad play with the Houston Astros in a finals game against the New York Yankees. Upton then congratulated her husband on making it to the World Series.
She shared photos of Genevieve in a custom denim jacket with Verlander's name and number on the back, captioning the post, "Go Daddy! We are ready for #Game4 !!! #goastros @justinverlander."
In another post, she celebrated the Astros making it to the World Series. "WORLD SERIES BOUND!!! So proud of you @justinverlander!! 😍🎉 CONGRATS ASTROS!!" she wrote, sharing a photo of Verlander lifting her in the air.
April 4, 2020: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander donate his weekly MLB paychecks to various coronavirus charities
While COVID-19 put the MLB season on hold in 2020, Verlander and Upton made the decision to give back. In an Instagram video, Verlander announced his and Upton's plan to donate his weekly paychecks from the MLB to different charities.
"Recently the @mlb announced they will be continuing to send paychecks to players while the season is suspended," the athlete wrote. "@kateupton and I have decided to donate those funds to a different organization each week so that we can support their efforts and highlight the great work they're doing during the COVID-19 crisis."
November 6, 2020: Kate Upton talks to PEOPLE about celebrating Genevieve's 2nd birthday
In a PEOPLE exclusive, Upton shared that she and Verlander planned to stay home with her sister and two nieces to celebrate their daughter Genevieve's special day.
"We're gonna celebrate together and the families are all gonna get together," the model said. "It's gonna be a fun celebration."
April 27, 2021: Kate Upton says Genevieve thinks dad Justin Verlander is a golfer
In an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Upton revealed that Genevieve might be confused about dad Verlander's profession.
Upton explained that her husband has been showing their daughter "lots of highlight films."
"I'm not sure if he's showing her highlight films because he's not playing right now, or if it's because — I think she thinks he's actually a golfer. She's seen him golf more than she's seen him play baseball," Upton said with a laugh.
"When we were watching the Masters the other day, she was like, 'Daddy! Daddy' I was like, 'No, that's not what he does. He's not that good,' " Upton continued.
July 19, 2022: Kate Upton and Justin Verlander walk the red carpet with daughter Genevieve
Daniel Shirey/MLB Photos
The couple walked the MLB All-Star Game Red Carpet with their 3-year-old daughter.
The pitcher told The Houston Chronicle that Genevieve is "really starting to get into it" when he plays. Verlander also commented on this event being a different experience as it is his first All-Star Game with his family. He shared, "I think this time, it's something I want to experience with my family and specifically with my daughter."
November 5, 2022: Kate Upton celebrates Justin Verlander's World Series win
Verlander and the Astros defeated the Philadelphia Phillies in six games to win the 2022 World Series. Of course, Upton and their daughter Genevieve were in the stands to cheer on Verlander.
Following the win on Nov. 5, Upton crashed Verlander's post-game interview and was asked if she wants her husband to retire. She replied, "I love watching my husband do what he loves … to see him do his craft. He's such an artist out there when he's pitching. When he's pitching it's truly so creative. It's such an art and we're so honored to be a part of that."