Cabrera’s message to fans: ‘Stay positive, Detroit’

Chris McCosky
The Detroit News

Detroit – Miguel Cabrera brought it up on his own.

The Tigers first baseman was answering a question after Wednesday’s 9-6 victory over the Minnesota Twins about how much fun he was having, now that the Tigers are back in a playoff race after a one-year hiatus.

“You play for this,” he said. “You’ve got a chance to make the playoffs. We hope we can finish strong and have a chance to play in the playoffs. This is fun. This is fun.”

Then he got to his message.

“It doesn’t matter what people say,” he said. “ ‘We’re not going to make it. We’re not going to do this or that.’ We hear a lot of bad things, but we always have to stay positive. A lot of people say negative things, but we have to stay positive.”

He didn’t say exactly where he was hearing the negativity. But he pointed to his iPhone and said, “This is dangerous.”

So he must be reading some of the negativity on social media.

“I’ve been here a lot of years,” he said. “I’ve been through it. But we got a lot of new guys here: ‘Don’t worry about that stuff.’ They think about it and read stuff. But we need to stay positive and go out there and play.”

Cabrera, as you’d expect, was in good spirits following the win. He had two go-ahead hits in the game. His single capped a four-run fourth inning and put the Tigers up temporarily, 6-5. His 33rd home run of the year, a missile that hit off the top of the fence in deep left-center and bounced into the visitors’ bullpen, provided the winning run in the seventh.

As usual, he was more eager to talk about his teammates than his own accomplishments. The Tigers bullpen pitched five scoreless, one-hit innings to lock down the win. He was asked if he’d ever been more comfortable with the back-end of the bullpen in his time in Detroit.

“I mean, we’ve got to believe in what we have,” he said. “In our mind, we don’t think somebody is going to do bad. We always believe. We need to win the game and whoever is pitching late in the game we trust. Doesn’t matter who is pitching.”

He was also asked about the contributions from Andrew Romine, who had an RBI single, set up a run with a sacrifice bunt and made a sensational over-the-shoulder catch running with his back to the infield.

“Everybody is important,” he said. “Everybody has to go out there and put something on the table. Everybody’s got to do something. It’s not about one player. It’s never about one guy or one pitcher. It’s about everybody.

“If you have to move a runner, you have to move a runner. If you have to sacrifice yourself, you’ve got to do it.”

He practiced what he preached. Cabrera gave himself up to advance a runner from second to third base in the first inning.

As he was walking out of the clubhouse, he turned back to the cameras and said, “Stay positive, Detroit.”

Twitter.com: @cmccosky