Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera left the game Monday with what the team called a "sore left hip flexor muscle." Cabrera appeared to be in some pain after scoring a run in the top of the fifth injury. After meeting with Tigers head athletic trainer Kevin Rand, Cabrera came out for the bottom half of the inning. But he still appeared to be battling some pain after single scooted by him, and was pulled from the game at that point.
It's obvious that something has bothered Cabrera for awhile. Originally a pick for the Home Run Derby last week, he declined his invitation for the exhibition. However, he did play in the All-Star Game a day later, going 1-for-3 with a double and scoring what turned out the be the game-winning run. He'd been favoring what appeared to be his back for at least a couple of weeks now -- though the two injuries are not necessarily related. On the other hand, the hip injury could be related if Cabrera had been overcompensating for past pain.
"He has some issues with that once in awhile, sometimes they can stretch it back in, we'll wait and see," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said after the game. He said it was too early to tell of Cabrera would play Tuesday.
Even with the injury, Cabrera was still batting .281 with 1.005 OPS for the month of July. Some will point out his average was down by about 100 points and his slugging by even more, which is a fair statement and undoubtedly has something to do with his sore body. But even a healthy Cabrera was bound to feature some setback from those Herculean numbers. The truth is likely somewhere in between.
As for the hip flexor, our own Rob Rogacki says it could mean anything and that Cabrera will probably need to take a few days off at some point to rest and recover. The Tigers at this point just call the injury "day to day."
Cabrera joins Omar Infante in recent injury struggles. Infante has not played since July 3, when he suffered an ankle injury after Blue Jays outfielder Colby Rasmus slid into him during a double-play attempt at second base.