Looking to stay fresh, Hunter rests in finale

Looking to stay fresh, Hunter rests in finale

PHOENIX -- Torii Hunter knocked key hits in the first two games of the Tigers' Interleague series with the D-backs, but manager Brad Ausmus gave him a day off for the finale to help keep the veteran outfielder healthy.

"At this point in his career, he needs days," Ausmus said. "So a [day] game after a night game is a good time to do it."

Ausmus said he's been working this year to give Hunter, 39, time off. So far, Hunter has played in 83 of the Tigers' 97 games this season.

"I just think. … to have Torii around for the long haul, he's going to have to have days here and there," Ausmus said.

Hunter hit a home run in the Tigers' series-opening 4-3 win on Monday, and knocked a single to center field on Tuesday that scored two runs, which represented the tying and go-ahead scores in the eighth inning. The hit set the Tigers up for a victory, but the D-backs rallied in the bottom half of the inning.

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