DETROIT — The good news is, unlike Los Angeles’ Albert Pujols, Miguel Cabrera was in the lineup Saturday.
The bad news is he’s still the designated hitter, not the third baseman.
“I go by the medical team’s suggestion,” manager Jim Leyland said. “I talked to (athletic trainer Kevin Rand) at 11 o’clock this morning about Cabrera. He checked everything, he double-checked everything.
“I was hoping for today, before the game yesterday. But after seeing him last night, I was not surprised that we’d have to DH him tonight.”
Cabrera accounted for the only Tigers run Friday night, a solo homer off Zack Greinke in the eighth inning.
“I doubt very much Cabrera will play third base before Kansas City (on Tuesday), after talking to trainers today,” Leyland said.
Leyland said Cabrera would continue to play unless the ankle problems start affecting his swing.
Leyland also said that if it were late in a close game, after the seventh inning, he would probably pinch run for Cabrera if he got on base.
With Cabrera unable to play the field, Leyland once again put Delmon Young in left field.
Leyland said Brennan Boesch would play Sunday and Young would sit out.
Fister feeling better
Doug Fister, who did not start Saturday because of a groin strain, appears to be making progress.
“Felt better today,” Rand said. “We were able to start being smart-aggressive with it like we had hoped.
“He did a full core workout, did excellent with that. Played catch, stretched it out, felt good there, tried to go through his motion a little bit more. He just had a really good day today.”
Fister said adding heat to his treatment has helped loosen up the groin, enabling him to do more.
“Warmed up in the weight room, I felt good in there,” Fister said. “Went out and played catch. I was able to go up to 120 feet and I felt really good with it.”
Rand said the next step would be to have Fister get on the mound and throw a light side in two or three days.
As long as things keep going the way they went Saturday, there’s a good chance Fister could make his next scheduled start, Sept. 1 at home against the Central Division-leading Chicago White Sox.
“(We’re) optimistic because today was a real good day for us,” Rand said.