Miguel Cabrera has not been healthy since July, and as of late has not been the slugger we grew used to seeing. Now we find out why: Cabrera had either a Grade 2 or Grade 3 strain in his groin that may require surgery to repair. That injury reportedly happened Sept. 21.
Chris Iott of MLive reports Cabrera saw Dr. William Myers in Miami between the end of the regular season and the start of the postseason. Myers promised the Tigers' slugger he'd be able to play in the postseason, but couldn't promise much more than that.
According to injury expert Will Carroll, a Grade 2 strain would be painful and would involve partial tearing. A Grade 3 strain is the most severe and would involve the rupture of the groin. Carroll uses a rope analogy, saying a Grade 2 injury means a chunk of the rope is missing. You could use it but you probably wouldn't want to. In a Grade 3 injury, you now have two pieces of rope and would definitely need to tie them back together.
Carroll notes on Twitter that Myers is a "the world's leading sports hernia doctor."
Cabrera hit .262 with a .311 on-base percentage and .405 slugging average in 11 postseason games. He had two home runs and seven RBI.
Up until the injury in August, an abdomen which occurred when Cabrera tried to turn a hit into a double against the A's, Cabrera had been having one of the best seasons by a right-handed batter ever. He hit .358/.449/.681 and still had a puncher's chance at repeating as the triple crown winner. From that point on he hit .274/.391/.329, with the only extra-base hits being a double and home run. Cabrera labored on the bases and was noticeably in pain seemingly on a daily basis.
"When he had the abdominal strain, he played the month of August and was the player of the month, even though it continued to restrict him," Dombrowski said. "You could see that. But he could still swing the bat. He hurt himself in addition to that, in the same area, he hurt his groin against the White Sox when he slid into second base that time and hurt his groin. The abdominal strain became healed. Then the groin became the problem."
Speaking with reporters on Monday, Dombrowski said the team was assured shutting down Cabrera in September would not have made a difference in October. So the Tigers allowed him to continue playing, knowing it would not likely make a difference either way.
However, Dombrowski added that he expects Cabrera will be healthy for the start of the regular season.
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