For now, Cabrera is listed as day-to-day, and manager Jim Leyland said they weren't sure yet whether he'd be available for Friday night's game in Kansas City.
"I'm a little worried," Cabrera said after the game, "but I think I'm going to be OK. They took good care of me."
Cabrera said he started feeling some soreness in his shoulder during Tuesday's series opener, but he played through it. It was a little worse Wednesday, but by Thursday, he said, "it was a little pinch."
It was enough that it was altering his swing. Cabrera struck out in each of his first two at-bats and would've hit into an inning-ending double play his third time up had Will Rhymes not beaten Twins shortstop J.J. Hardy to second base.
Once Cabrera came back in the dugout for the sixth inning, he had a lengthy talk with head athletic trainer Kevin Rand, then walked up the stairs from the Tigers' dugout into the clubhouse in the top of the sixth inning with Rand at his side. He did not come out when the Tigers took the field for the bottom of the inning. Don Kelly moved from left field to replace him at first base, with Casper Wells entering the game.
Of all the injuries the Tigers have had to endure this season, any loss of Cabrera would be huge. He leads the Major Leagues with 108 RBIs to go with a .336 batting average and 33 home runs, both second in the AL. Cabrera has been one of just two constants in the Tigers' offensive production along with rookie leadoff man Austin Jackson.
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.