Cabrera hopes to return, flustered over play

Miguel Cabrera used crutches to maneuver around the visiting clubhouse at Progressive Field on his sprained right ankle, a discouraging sign for his chances of returning to action in these final days of the Tigers season. However, he still holds out hope that he might be able to play this week.
“Let me see how I feel tomorrow or the next day,” Cabrera said Tuesday afternoon. “I don’t know if it’s day-to-day. Today I don’t feel good to play, so let’s see about tomorrow.”
The Tigers, meanwhile, were guarded in their comments, other than x-ray results that showed no structural damage.
“He’s not too good,” manager Jim Leyland said. “He’s hurting. That’s all I have for you on that. He will definitely not play today.”
Don Kelly was in Tuesday’s starting lineup at first base. Ryan Raburn batted in the cleanup spot in Cabrera’s place. It was just the seventh game of the lineup for Cabrera, who leads the team in games played with 150.
Cabrera turned his ankle stepping awkwardly on first base on a pickoff play Monday against the Indians. He immediately crumbled to the ground in pain, and after getting back onto his feet, he could barely put any weight on his right foot as he limped back to the dugout with help from head athletic trainer Kevin Rand.
At that point, Cabrera worried he had do something worse to his ankle. Considering his teammate and good friend Magglio Ordonez broke his ankle sliding into home plate back in July, an injury that led to season-ending surgery, he was understandably worried.
“When I twisted it, I heard a lot of [cracking],” Cabrera said. “So I was worried right at that point. But when I come in here, they tell me it’s not broken. I got the x-ray last night, they say there’s no bone broken. After that, I feel better. Hopefully the swelling will go, I can move better and tomorrow and try to finish the season with my team and play.”
He will not return to action, he emphasized, just to try to hold onto the American League RBI lead and enhance his MVP credentials in what is shaping up as a very close, hotly-debated contest.
“If I win, I win,” Cabrera said. “But right now, with this injury, I can’t control that. I can say I want to win. If I play, I say, ‘Yeah I want to win. I want to do everything I can to drive in more runs.’ But right now, I can’t control that. I don’t know what’s going to happen.”
He isn’t trying to worry about that, but he’s a little frustrated over the way the injury unfolded. The pickoff throw that got him scrambling back to first came from catcher Luke Carlin throwing behind him, not pitcher Carlos Carrasco throwing over. It was the first time, Cabrera said, that any catcher had tried to pick him off this year.
“In that play,” Cabrera said, “it was a situation where it’s not going to be a bunt play. It’s not going to be a hit-and-run because we’ve got our fifth hitter. I don’t know why he pulled that play. Maybe he wants to prove he can play next year in the big leagues. I don’t know what he’s going to prove. But in that situation, I don’t know. 
“That kind of surprised me right there. I don’t expect that play. I’m not a fast runner. I’m not going to steal second. I’m not going to do anything. I don’t know why he put too much attention on me.”
Carlin said he wasn’t expecting Cabrera to be running, and he felt bad that Cabrera was injured on the play. However, he defended the throw as an attempt to get an out and try to get out of a developing jam. 
“They have so many good hitters in their lineup, we try to get outs any way we can,” Carlin said. “He got on first base when we intentionally walked him, and he had a pretty big lead and wasn’t getting back very quickly. Obviously he’s not going anywhere. There was somebody on second when we intentionally walked him as well. I knew he wasn’t going anywhere, but I was hoping maybe we could catch him off the bag a little bit and maybe get another out and get our pitcher out of a jam.
“It’s unfortunate. Obviously, we don’t want anybody to get hurt. Obviously he’s a great player, and I have a lot of respect for him. But no matter who’s out there, if I think I can pick him off, I’m going to go get him.”

10 Comments

“In that play,” Cabrera said, “it was a situation where it’s not going to be a bunt play. It’s not going to be a hit-and-run because we’ve got our fifth hitter. I don’t know why he pulled that play. Maybe he wants to prove he can play next year in the big leagues. I don’t know what he’s going to prove. But in that situation, I don’t know.”
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Well, that’s kind of what I felt at the time. Seemed like a rookie play from a guy who thinks he’s the next Pudge. I thought maybe I was just frustrated with the injury, but here’s Cabby saying the same thing. Kind of reminded me of that RFer, can’t remember who it was, that tried to throw out Ordonez at first on a clean single to right. Some of those “unwritten rules” maybe? Like sliding BEFORE you get to the bag and not after? I was looking forward to going to see Miguel play in Baltimore this weekend.
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–Rich

For some reason I think that was Kubel on the Ordonez play you mentioned. If nothing else at least Cabby had a healthy season up to this point because this team would be lost without him offensively. Now he can take it easy and let it heal in the offseason.

Well Rich, you can hold down the fort at Camden. I had planned all along to go but found out that parent weekend is the dame time at James Madison, so I’ll be there for my son’s senior moment. Like you I had hope to see the big guys, and I have a tinge of regret in not going, but I look forward to our new and improved team for 2011. The real regret is that it might have been my last opportunity to see Inge wearing the Old English D. I’ve let everybody on the blog basically chop him down with no defense from me. But unlike most of our guys, I have had the honor to have known from his amateur commonwealth days. I hope he’s back; I hope he plays every day. That’s from the heart, not from the business side of our sport. With all due respect Dan, we have always agreed to disagree in regard to Brandon Inge. Hope our guys finish on a great stride, Rich. I look forward to your report.

Greg

For me, the rainout means I won’t get to see Scherzer pitch on Sunday in Baltimore. No Max, no Miggy (probably). Bummer. I guess I’ll still go up for the game since I haven’t seen the Tigers live since spring training. I was in Michigan but it was during the AS break.
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So Scherzer and Verlander, back to back tomorrow. Good day to sit out for Cleveland hitters.
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–Rich

Absolutely, Rich. The Baltimore series ought to be real interesting with JL matching wits with Buck. Baltimore is on a mission with the new manager.
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All I could think of when Miggy turned his ankle was the time I turned mine over like that while working at Target Distribution Ctr. a few years ago. Just standing there and my ankle rolled over with a terrible sharp pain. Kept working but my ankle was swollen. It would swell on and off until I went to the doctor and x-rays revealed a torn tendon. Didn’t have it fixed as it would have been major surgery.
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Now he’s on crutches. Hope it’s just a sprain. Doesn’t sound good, though.

David I agree with you about Brandon. He’s a great guy, a gritty ballplayer with upstanding character. A significant role model. He’s a really good 3rd baseman. I was saying this 4 or 5 years ago—that he was overlooked and had the best range of any 3rd sacker in the game.
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However, he is not a good hitter.
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Part of me will be saddened to see him go–but I hope he does. If he stays they will play him till he falls apart. And we will complain about the lack of production from a position which requires it. He deserves to play but I don’t think he fill a major piece of the puzzle for the Detroit Tigers.
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I wish him, and you, well.

High ankle sprain for Cabrera. Bad news. It can take anywhere from six weeks to six months to get back into action and, in either case, will affect any offseason workout regimen he uses. He’ll be ready for spring training only if he’s lucky, and now the joint is weakened forever.
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We’re not having much luck with our irreplaceable players.
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–Rich

Verlander mentioned coming out of the bullpen to win #20, so IF he wins tonight maybe G-Man go his usual good 4 innings and then put in Verlander?

If Sherzer and Verlander pitch today, and they have to throw one of them on short rest, AND Verlander wins tonight, smokes better let Verlander pitch the last game of the season.

I’ll be shocked if we win in Baltimore.

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