Miguel Cabrera is most likely going to post better numbers than he did last season when he walked away with a Triple Crown and MVP award, but it may not be enough to get the job done this year.
Cabrera has just one fewer home run and nine fewer RBI with 25 games remaining on the schedule, but the fact that he is being forced to sit out for the third straight day with an injury is severely hurting his chances. If his groin issue forces him to miss more time, posting enough home runs to repeat the feat will be almost impossible.
Chris Davis currently has four more home runs than Cabrera and doesn’t look like he’ll be slowing down any time soon. Cabrera’s batting average (.358) is much higher than Davis’ (.298), but Davis has been able to put balls in the seats with regularity. Outside of a short drought after the All-Star break, Davis has continued to hit home runs all season. It will be difficult for Cabrera to make up ground on him if he is forced to miss time due to the injury.
Cabrera’s season has been very similar to last year, but he’s just hitting at a higher level. He tends to come into spring training looking much more fit than he does near the end of a season, and usually the home run total goes up as his weight does. Cabrera hit only four home runs in April this year but has been going up ever since.
He hit eleven home runs in August, despite the fact he was forced to miss some time due to his injury. It seems like swinging for the fences has become more of a priority for him. He’s not much of a threat on the base-paths right now, so trotting around them is a better option. The only problem is he appears to be looking for pitches to hit out rather than taking what he gets.
Cabrera is the best hitter around right now because of his versatility and willingness to take what pitchers give him. If he starts to try to do too much, he’s not the same type of hitter.
If he is unable to repeat the feat, people won’t hold it against him. The Detroit Tigers hold a 7.5 game lead in the AL Central and it’s looking like the postseason is in their near future. The best thing he can do for his team at this point is make sure he doesn’t take the injury with him into October when they really need him to be at his best.