DETROIT -- Miguel Cabrera progressed enough with his left hip injury to take full batting practice. He hasn't yet progressed enough to take part in a full game.
Cabrera was out of the Tigers' lineup for Friday's series opener against the Phillies, his fourth consecutive game out. Whether he's available to pinch-hit off an injury-shortened bench wasn't clear, but multiple rounds of batting practice against both left- and right-handed pitching seemed to be an attempt to figure that out.
Cabrera did not take any ground balls during BP, so anything beyond hitting seems out of the question.
"He's made real good improvement," Tigers head athletic trainer Kevin Rand said. "Obviously, we held him out today to give him a chance to do some activity. He's feeling a lot better, but he still feels he needs another day or so.
"Obviously, you'd rather lose Miguel Cabrera for two or three games than two or three weeks. It's important for us to make sure that he's right before he comes back."
Don Kelly was initially in the Tigers' starting lineup at third base, but was scratched shortly after batting practice began, with Ramon Santiago taking his place. That switch was not health-related, according to a Tigers spokesperson. With only one healthy position player on the bench other than backup catcher Brayan Pena, it's likely manager Jim Leyland wanted Kelly available to insert in the infield or outfield.
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. Bobby Nightengale is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less