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Miguel Cabrera exits Tigers game early with injury

KANSAS CITY, MO. - MAY 30: Detroit Tigers' first baseman Miguel Cabrera (24) during a MLB game between the Detroit Tigers and the Kansas City Royals, May 30, 2017, at Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, MO. The Royals won, 1-0. (Photo by Keith Gillett/Icon Sportswire)
Keith Gillett/Icon Sportswire

Detroit Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera left Monday night’s game against the Colorado Rockies in the fifth inning due to lower back tightness and has officially been listed as day-to-day. He was replaced defensively by John Hicks.

Prior to his departure, Cabrera walked twice and scored a run, finishing the night 0-for-1, bringing his average on the season to .253 while bumping up his on-base percentage to .339.

The 2017 year has been a major struggle for Cabrera, who is on pace for the lowest batting average of his career and was not elected to the All-Star Game for the first time since 2009. In the 113 games he has appeared, his power outage has produced just 14 home runs and 57 RBIs, a far cry from the 38 home runs and 108 RBIs he had just a season ago en route to his seventh career Silver Slugger award.

Despite the down year, Cabrera remains the active leader in career batting average at .317. Three separate seasons during his career, he has led all of baseball in batting and has not hit below .300 since his first season with the Tigers in 2008.

At age 34, Cabrera still has a guaranteed six years and $184 million remaining on his contract, with additional vesting options for the 2024 and 2025 seasons.

His struggles in 2017 have been emblematic of the Tigers’ lack of success as a team, entering play on Monday 56-73 for the year. The team’s .434 winning percentage is on pace to be its worst since the 2003 season when Cabrera was a 20-year-old rookie with the Florida Marlins.

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