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In midst of All-Star push, V-Mart sits out finale

In midst of All-Star push, V-Mart sits out finale

DETROIT -- Side soreness sidelined Victor Martinez for the third straight game on Wednesday.

Tigers manager Brad Ausmus has opted to be cautious with the slugger. Torii Hunter was in the lineup as the designated hitter in the finale vs. the A's for the first time in his Tigers career. J.D. Martinez, who was named Detroit's Player of the Month for June, batted cleanup and played right field.

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"He tried to talk his way in," Ausmus said of Victor Martinez following Tuesday's game. "I just felt like we've got to give it a little more time. It's in an area on his side that if it becomes serious, it could be a long-term thing."

Ausmus said Wednesday that he hopes to have Martinez back for Thursday's series opener with Tampa Bay.

Martinez, who hadn't missed a game this season before sitting out Monday, entered the week third in voting for designated hitters in the latest American League All-Star ballot update. He was trailing second-place David Ortiz by just 120,000 votes.

Fans can cast their votes for starters at MLB.com -- online or on a mobile device -- using the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot Sponsored by Experian until Thursday at 11:59 p.m. ET. The 2014 All-Star Game will be played at Target Field on Tuesday, July 15 on FOX.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. Matt Slovin is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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