DETROIT -- Miguel Cabrera finally moved to designated hitter for Friday's series opener against the Royals. But it was only for a day. It was only the third game for Cabrera at DH this season.
For the Tigers first baseman, who moved to third base in Spring Training for the first time in five years, that's a far better ratio than many would have expected. It's the ratio of an everyday third baseman.
On Friday, though, it was a third baseman getting a night off his feet until his spot in the order comes up.
Cabrera leads all American League third basemen in games, innings and starts at the hot corner. His .766 zone rating ranks fifth in the group, according to STATS, while his 2.58 Range Factor (putouts plus assists per nine innings) and .962 fielding percentage ranked third.
The move was manager Jim Leyland's idea to give Cabrera a rest. The skipper offered to do the same with first baseman Prince Fielder on Thursday, but Fielder declined, saying he'd rather stay in the field.