Miggy not rushing rehab of calf injury

Miggy not rushing rehab of calf injury

BOSTON -- Few could have envisioned exactly how serious Miguel Cabrera's left calf injury would be when the Tigers' first baseman came out of a July 3 win over the Blue Jays.

But Cabrera, who spoke publicly on Friday for the first time since pulling the muscle three weeks earlier, said he immediately knew something was amiss while running to second base in the fourth inning, after which he promptly left the game.

"When I run to second, I feel like somebody shot me," said Cabrera, who traveled with the team to Fenway Park. "I feel like something was wrong. When they told me I was going on the DL, I was not surprised because I knew it was that bad."

The eventual prognosis for Cabrera's recovery -- the slugger is expected to spend six to eight weeks on the disabled list with a Grade 3 strain to the calf -- came as crushing news to the Tigers' clubhouse.

Since Cabrera went down, however, his teammates have picked up plenty of slack on offense, combining for five or more runs in 11 of the last 16 games entering Friday. And it's that production that has the 10-time All-Star selection hopeful that Detroit can show more consistency in the second half.

"They're scoring runs. I think they're scoring like six or seven runs every game," Cabrera said. "We've got to keep our heads up, try and go out there and play baseball and try to make something happen. Forget about the past. Try to go out there and play good baseball and forget about everything. Go out there and play one game at a time."

As for Cabrera, he still has yet to begin any sort of baseball activities. The veteran plans on approaching his recovery with caution after dealing with lingering ankle woes this season.

"I feel like [recovery] will be like a month because it just didn't feel right … I would say I got to take my time with this," Cabrera said. "I don't want to go back [too quickly] because that happened with my ankle. I didn't take the right time, so my ankle, it was bothering me this whole season."

"I've got to be smart. I've got to be on the right track and I'd like to be healthy because if I keep playing with problems I'm going to get hurt again like this."

In traveling with the team on its current 10-game road trip, Cabrera at least believes he will be able to better focus on healing his calf and getting back to where he belongs -- the baseball diamond.

"I'm here because I want to be here. I want to play. I want to be on the field," he said. "If I stay home, I think it's going to take longer. This is my job. This is what I love so I want to be here."

Alec Shirkey is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.