Cabrera arrives at Tigers camp

As expected, Miguel Cabrera was an early arrival to Tigers camp. We just figured it would be early on the calendar, not on the clock.

Yet as the fog was just starting to lift around Lakeland before 9 a.m. ET, Cabrera was already in his workout gear and hitting in the batting cages. He wasted no time getting to work, and he didn’t waste much time brushing off questions about his weight.

“I don’t know,” he said when asked about his weight program. “My goal is to be ready for the season. Whatever weight I [am at], I have to be in the best shape every year to go out there and don’t be hurt. I’m trying to be in my best shape and trying to be 100 percent the first day of the season.”

Cabrera looked notably slimmer compared with last year, but he couldn’t put a number on it. Manager Jim Leyland said Thursday he felt that 255 pounds would be a good weight for him, and a source close to Cabrera suggested that would be his weight.

To Cabrera, the scrutiny has gotten repetitive.

“It’s the question they ask me every year,” he said. “I think that’s been an issue my whole career. Everybody complained about my weight every year. It’s the same thing this year. Everybody’s talking the same thing about my weight, and he’s overweight, he’s this, he’s this. It’s nothing new. It’s been a complaint almost my whole career. Every year they say I’m overweight. It’s the same thing this year.”

That said, Cabrera added that he thinks losing weight will be good for him in the long run. He sounded very much like someone transitioning for the next stage of his career as he approaches age 30 next year.

“I think that’s a very positive thing to happen right now in my career,” he said, “because it’s going to help me a lot to lose more. It’s going to help me a lot to get in my best shape. It’s going to help me to play long in baseball.”

For what it’s worth, his neighbor in the Tigers’ spring training clubhouse gave him a vote of confidence. Jhonny Peralta saw him settle in, turned to reporters and said, “He’s ready.”

Leyland was in his office when Cabrera arrived.

“He looks great,” said Leyland, who added that he seems “real upbeat.”

Leyland said he felt like Cabrera is “on a mission to show he can play third base.”

Cabrera, however, downplayed that in favor of the team aspect.

“I want to win some games,” he said. “I’ll go over there and do my best and do my best to help the pitchers get some outs and try to get some wins. That’s what I’m going to do. I don’t want to try to show everybody I can play third base because, why? What’s the reason? There’s no reason to hear all the negative things they say about me playing third base.”

He did indicate, though, that moving back to third will be a challenge.

“It’s going to be hard,” he said. “Nobody said it’s going to be easy. It’s going to be hard playing back over there. But when you’re motivated and you have your team to support you and you’ve got the support of your manager and all your team, you feel like you’re going to do it, you can do it and play your best baseball.”

10 Comments

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Good for Cabby – just let him play – he wants to play @ a high level – he is a future HOF player – he knows what he is doing – as he said I will do the best that I can, period.

A world of difference in hte drama that is this year’s ST and last year’s.
We now see all kinds of media focus on Miguel’s weight. A far cry from the focus on his behaviour and maturity.
I have been saying I’s like to see Miggy lose 20 punds just to get a little leaner. That was before we dreamed his return to 3rd would be a reality. To his credit he was already thinking the same thing.
There are so many advantages to him trimming down. He is actually a good base runner with great basepath instincts. That gives him that half-second you need in going from 2nd-home or 1st-3rd. I think he will actually hit the bal further than he did last year with this athletic and muscled approach.
Our staff (sans Penny) does not get hammered hard down the 3rd base line much anyway. Brandon was excellent when we had Maroth, Rogers and Robertson. Our staff throws a much different game to RHB now, much different.
Yes we have 2 behemoths at the corners in the infield but both of them love the game, have pride and are at an age where the new challenge will only make them better.

Miggs sure has a level head about him even with all the natural gifts he has been given.
Regarding the earlier Inge “what about me” issue, I may be reading more into it but thought it was further strange that DD was contacted ahead of JL. Not then surprised JL is playing the diplomat in his comments about Inge attempting to go to 2B. One thing is certain, they will not be limiting too much Raburn’s playing time.

I have zero concerns over Cabrera’s ability to play 3rdbase. I’m looking forward to it. And that’s correct about his baserunning; he’s one of the best we have. If he’d been at this weight last postseason, he beats Cruz’s throw in game four and we probably play the Cardinals again in the WS.
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Going over JL’s head was one of the points I hinted at, Dave, so we’re on the same page there. DD probably said it’s okay with him if it’s okay with Jim, and Jim went along with that. Kind of like a kid playing his parents one at a time. “Dad said it’s okay.” One of the many lessons I learned in the military was to never go over the head of your immediate superior. And a hard lesson it was, if you get my drift.

Always spot on Rich. Bet Miggs had a quiet chuckle to himself when Prince got signed and not just how good the team will be.

Sorry, I meant to say Dan and Rich. I always enjoy the left field comments which more often than not make it to the mound!!!

Cabby has my respect as a man and a player. He has had challenges and works to overcome them. This year he undertakes a challenge again. I am all for cabby losing any weight he feels comfortable with even if his power goes down. I would rather him be healthy and have a decent life after baseball than be a dh that pounds the ball well past his legitimate playing years have wained.

Rapada with the Yankees. Life is good for LHP

Ya I guess so!

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