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Ausmus: Cabrera, Martinez to play again Tuesday

Tony Paul
The Detroit News

Lakeland, Fla. — All continues to be well on the Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez fronts.

Both sluggers will play again Tuesday, after making their Grapefruit League debuts Sunday, Tigers manager Brad Ausmus told The Detroit News.

Cabrera will play in the game against the Yankees in Tampa on Tuesday night, while Martinez will hang back in Lakeland and get some swings in the minor-league game.

That'll be how Ausmus has to break up the playing time for the time being, at least until they both can play in the same game. That won't happen until Cabrera plays first base, and Ausmus is being cautious about rushing the big man there.

"I don't think it's that far off, but we've gotta get through a few days of DHing first," Ausmus said. "He's moving pretty well taking grounders. If everything goes well, there's no reason he can't play first base in the not-so-distant future."

Cabrera and Martinez were both able to play in major-league games Sunday, because the Tigers had split-squad action —Cabrera, coming off ankle surgery, went 1-for-3 in Lakeland, while Martinez, coming off knee surgery, went 0-for-3 in Lake Buena Vista. But the split squads are finished.

To guarantee each of them three or more at-bats a game, one will have to play in the major-league game and one in the minor-league game until Cabrera starts playing defense.

For his part, Cabrera has said he's more than ready to play first base. He said that even before DHing Sunday.

The Tigers had a rare no-game day Monday, and might've been rained out had they been scheduled to play, anyway. Several players still worked out, but mostly minor-leaguers. Cabrera and Martinez took a break.

tpaul@detroitnews.com

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