Cabrera sat out the last game of Detroit’s road trip Thursday, and the Tigers did fine without him, beating Baltimore 6-4 to complete a three-game sweep.
“I’m hoping he proves us right — to hit it at home in front of our fans, and hit it in a win,” manager A.J. Hinch said before the game.
Cabrera hit homer No. 499 on Wednesday night, and afterward Hinch said the 38-year-old slugger would play Thursday as well. But Hinch changed course and left Cabrera out of the lineup, citing the heat and the fact that rain delays had made for some long nights at the ballpark earlier in the series.
The temperature at game time Thursday was 97 degrees.
Cabrera is hitting .255 with 12 home runs and 51 RBIs this season.
JACK IS BACK
St. Louis Cardinals ace Jack Flaherty (8-1, 2.90 ERA) returns from the 60-day injured list to start the opener of a three-game series at Kansas City. Flaherty has been out since May 31 with an oblique injury.
Third in the NL West, the Padres hold the league’s second wild-card spot. But they already have several important players on the injured list, including star shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr., infielder Jurickson Profar and pitchers Drew Pomeranz, Dinelson Lamet and Chris Paddack.
“We don’t have time to feel sorry for ourselves or anything like that,” Tingler said. “This is what we’ve got. This is baseball. Everyone deals with some type of adversity. We’ve got to continue to fight and battle.”
Cincinnati right-hander Tyler Mahle (9-3, 3.78 ERA) faces Zack Wheeler (10-6, 2.42) and the Phillies in the opener of a three-game series between NL playoff contenders. Wheeler pitched a two-hitter and struck out 11 in a 3-0 victory Sunday over the New York Mets, his former team.
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