The Detroit Tigers know what they’ve got. They know what a formidable duo they have in their lineup with Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez. As such, they are exercising extra caution when it comes to keeping their sluggers healthy for the long run.
Martinez was scratched from Detroit’s lineup on Monday night after he self-reported that his back was sore. He was showing no ill-effects in the lead-up to the game and it sounds like nobody would have known the difference if he hadn’t said anything. But he did speak up, and that was enough for the Tigers to proactively give him a day to rest.
“He didn’t want to come out,” Brad Ausmus said. “He took BP and he looked OK, but I just decided that I didn’t want to risk losing Vic for an extended period of time.”
Thus, Martinez was scratched from the Tigers’ lineup for the opener vs. the A’s, his first time out of the starting nine this season. Martinez hadn’t missed a start since the Tigers’ regular-season finale last year, when Henderson Alvarez no-hit them.
This certainly seems like the wise course of action. It helps that the Tigers have taken some of the pressure off themselves by playing better baseball and reclaiming their spot atop the American League Central.
It sounds like Martinez, who is slashing a spectacular .323/.384/.589 this season, will be back in the starting lineup in a day or two.