Cabrera hopes to play Friday

BY foxsports • July 31, 2013

DETROIT (AP) -- Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera was encouraged by his improved condition after missing another game with a strained lower abdomen.

"I feel better," Cabrera said after Detroit beat Washington 11-1 without him on Wednesday. "Hopefully, we can get out of way this quick and try to be 100 percent Friday."

After a day off Thursday, the AL Central-leading Tigers will start a series at home against the Chicago White Sox.

Cabrera said he wouldn't dance, as planned, but would attend a charity event on Thursday night.

"No dance. Sing," he said with a smile.

Cabrera didn't play against the Nationals on Wednesday, a day after aggravating an injury.

The third baseman appeared to be in pain in the fifth inning, trying to field a slow-rolling grounder, but he stayed in the game.

He referred questions about his injury to athletic trainer Kevin Rand, who said Cabrera has a strained lower abdomen, which is related to the hip injury that kept him out of four games last week.

"He knows that there are certain plays that are going to stress that area more than other plays," Rand said. "Obviously, you can see swinging the bat does not. He swings the bat very well. The two plays to his right, no problems on those. But when he came in on that other play and came up, yeah, he felt it at that point. He tweaked it a little bit."

The reigning Triple Crown winner is easily leading the major leagues with a .359 batting average, he was tied through Tuesday's games with Baltimore's Chris Davis with a baseball-high 99 RBIs and his 32 homers trail only Davis' total.

Tigers manager Jim Leyland said it will be difficult to determine when Cabrera should play, and when he should rest to avoid turning the ailment into a long-term injury.

"That's one of those tough things for the player because he wants to play so bad," Leyland said. "It's also one of the tough things for the manager because you don't know if you should give him another day, is he good to be put back in there? I don't really know that."