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Cabrera rests with 'cranky' ankle, Machado makes MLB debut

Lynn Henning
The Detroit News
Dixon Machado

Oakland, Calif. -- On a Memorial Day known for rest and reflection, the Tigers followed suit, of sorts, as some high-profile regulars took a seat for the Tigers-A's game (4:07 p.m.) at Oakland Coliseum.

Miguel Cabrera got a day of rest because of an ankle that has been "a bit cranky" in the words of Tigers manager Brad Ausmus. Cabrera had surgery on the ankle last autumn and Ausmus said the day of vacation was discussed a few days ago with Cabrera.

Cabrera had played in all 45 of the Tigers' games this season.

Normally a left-side infielder, Hernan Perez replaced Cabrera at first base. Perez played briefly at first in a game last month against the Yankees.

J.D. Martinez was in the lineup's No. 3 slot, as designated hitter, against A's right-handed starter Jesse Hahn.

Another change was set for shortstop, where rookie Dixon Machado, summoned Sunday from Triple A Toledo, was to get his first big-league start in place of Jose Iglesias, who is still aching from a knee contusion.

Yoenis Cespedes was to bat in the cleanup slot, followed by Tyler Collins (right field), Nick Castellanos, James McCann, Perez and Machado.

Anthony Gose was to lead off and start in center field.

"The truth is, there's no good day to get Miggy out of the lineup," Ausmus said, "but you have to do it."

Perez has become a rarely used outfield/infield utility option for the Tigers, which gets to the heart of an ongoing roster problem.

"He's a much better hitter than he's shown," Ausmus said, "but he has to get at-bats. We've got to get him out of his funk (.083 batting average).

"He's used to playing. Unfortunately for Hernan, our lineup is pretty well set."

Shane Greene was to start for the Tigers, who are 26-19 and three games behind the first-place Royals.

TIGERS LINEUP

1. Anthony Gose, CF

2. Ian Kinsler, 2B

3. J.D. Martinez, DH

4. Yoenis Cespedes, LF

5. Tyler Collins, RF

6. Nick Castellanos, 3B

7. James McCann, C

8. Hernan Perez, 1B

9. Dixon Machado, SS

Shane Greene, RHP

A'S LINEUP

1. Billy Burns, CF

2. Marcus Semien, SS

3. Josh Reddick, RF

4. Stephen Vogt, C

5. Billy Butler, DH

6. Max Muncy, 3B

7. Mark Canha, 1B

8. Sam Fuld, LF

9. Eric Sogard, 2B

Jesse Hahn, RHP