LAKELAND, Fla. -- Miguel Cabrera's big frame is back at first base this spring, but at least part of his heart remains at third, where he played regularly the past two years. In that sense, Sunday was a homecoming.
With an eye towards Interleague Play, manager Brad Ausmus used Sunday's game against the Marlins to get Cabrera some time at third. It's not an option he plans on using, but he wants to be ready for it.
"He looked fine," Ausmus said. "I would feel very confident putting him over there for a game or two if we had to."
Cabrera said after the game he felt good back at third.
That makes it sound more like an emergency option than managerial discretion. If Cabrera moved to third for a game, it would open up DH Victor Martinez to start at first base while keeping Alex Avila behind the plate. The more publicized plan for Interleague Play involves using Martinez at catcher.
The Tigers don't have long before they have to put plans to work. Their first road trip of the season consists of five Interleague games -- two against the Dodgers, followed by three in San Diego.
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.