Miguel Cabrera, for the first time so far in the season, is not in the starting lineup for the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday. Don Kelly will take his spot at first base and will hit fifth in the batting order.
Tigers manager Brad Ausmus hasn’t been able to give the All-Star player a break until now and is thankful the opportunity has presented itself.
“Generally speaking, when you’re a regular player, first of all, you want a day game off,” Ausmus said. “We’re playing outside of the division; actually playing outside of the league, if you want to get technical. So that was the thought process behind it.”
The Tigers will face the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday and being without Cabrera will be slightly nerve wracking. As Ausmus mentioned above, playing someone outside of the league is the perfect opportunity, but it will also be hard to be without a player who can hit most pitches well.
The original plan was to give Cabrera a night off on Sunday when the Tigers played the Tampa Bay Rays. Due to the game being switched from day to night, this plan was ruled out.
Another weighing factor is that the Tigers are about to play a four game series against the second place Kansas City Royals. It is essential that the Tigers have their slugger in the lineup during these games.
Victor Martinez will also be out of the lineup for the fifth straight day due to some lingering back and side soreness. He is expected to return after the All-Star break.