There it was, another dramatic flash of possibility. We saw it again from Justin Verlander, and we see it occasionally and emphatically from the Tigers.

Six Tigers will be in New York for the All-Star Game, more than any other team. And because he won’t be able to pitch on short rest, Verlander conducted his own All-Star show Sunday, flirting with a no-hitter. That’s what the Tigers and Verlander are doing so far — flirting with greatness, but not ready to settle down and commit to it.

The Tigers hit the All-Star break in first place after a 5-0 blanking of the Rangers before another sellout crowd. Verlander didn’t allow a hit until Mitch Moreland drilled a two-out double in the seventh, although he didn’t look unhittable. Afterward, he lamented his off-speed pitches still weren’t very good, and his fastball wasn’t fully uncorked.

This is why the Tigers remain scary, in more good ways than bad. They pile up gaudy numbers everywhere but the standings, and eventually that has to change. They’re 52-42, fifth-best in the AL and only a game-and-a-half ahead of the Indians. It’s the seventh time they’ve reached 10 games above .500, and have dropped back each time.

And yet, if Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder Torii Hunter and Jhonny Peralta hit like this, and Max Scherzer and the rest of the starters pitch like they can, look out. And if Verlander gets rolling, really, really look out.

He expects he will, and not just based on this stellar performance. He grinded through one of his toughest first halves and emerged with a 10-6 record and 3.50 ERA. If he can do that without his best stuff, imagine what’s possible.

“I know I was inconsistent, not where I want to be,” Verlander said. “But I was able to battle and put up some pretty good numbers, considering. Hopefully in the second half, things start clicking.”