The Detroit Tigers were forced to toil through the end of the season and the playoffs in 2013 with a version of Miguel Cabrera that was not 100 percent. It is now the middle of the next season and Cabrera says he is still dealing with the issue.
Speaking earlier this week, Cabrera said the following about his health this season (quotes from the Detroit Free Press):
“There are times when I feel good, but there are always muscles that are tightening, muscles that are not functioning properly,” Cabrera said in Spanish (via USA TODAY). “It’s part of the process. The same thing is happening to Justin Verlander, but the difference is he pitches every five days, so you don’t see it as frequently.
“But as he and I talked about, we’re never going to offer any excuses for our performance.”
Cabrera entered the All-Star break batting .306/.364/.534 with 14 home runs and 75 runs driven in. I bet a lot of guys would kill to have that kind of production while dealing with an injury, especially a type of injury that often keeps baseball players from performing well.
It does raise two questions, however. One of them has to do with the current season and how well Cabrera will hold up for the stretch run. The other is a long-term consideration. Just this winter the Tigers signed Cabrera to an eight-year, $240 million deal. That stands to be a problem for the Tigers in a number of ways; how well he will age is at the top of the list of potential problems with that contract extension.
This might not mean anything in the long term in that regard, but it still has to get their attention since it is an injury from last season.