Jose Cabrera exited Venezuela's 3-0 loss to the Dominican Republic on Thursday with a tight back and could miss his team's upcoming World Baseball Classic matchup against Puerto Rico on Saturday.Cabrera was replaced by Hernan Perez at first base in the bottom half of the sixth inning. Manager Omar Vizquel
Jose Cabrera exited Venezuela's 3-0 loss to the Dominican Republic on Thursday with a tight back and could miss his team's upcoming World Baseball Classic matchup against Puerto Rico on Saturday.
Cabrera was replaced by Hernan Perez at first base in the bottom half of the sixth inning. Manager Omar Vizquel said after the game that it is unclear whether Cabrera will miss any significant time.
"His waist is still hurting, but he's a warrior," said Vizquel, who also referenced Cabrera's residual pain from the right ankle surgery he underwent during the winter of 2014. "Hopefully, tomorrow, he'll be recuperating, and hopefully he'll wake up relaxed. And obviously, if he's doing well by Saturday, well, logically we're going to include him.
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"He's the captain of the team. We're going to see how he's going to feel for that time frame."
Cabrera batted with one out and the bases empty in the top of the sixth before grounding to third baseman Manny Machado. The 33-year-old slugger hustled down the line but was beat by a sensational throw from Machado. Cabrera was seen trying to shake discomfort out of his legs between pitches at the plate, then grimaced slightly as he extended his foot toward first base in an effort to beat the throw.
"Obviously, on one of the swings, he was grabbing his leg," Vizquel said. "He was stretching. And when that inning was done, I didn't like his response, and I pulled him out."
An 11-time All-Star, Cabrera is coming off another stellar 2016 season for the Tigers, in which he batted .316/.393/.563 with 38 homers and 108 RBIs.
The World Baseball Classic runs through Wednesday. In the U.S., games air live exclusively in English on MLB Network and on an authenticated basis via MLBNetwork.com/watch, while ESPN Deportes and WatchESPN provide the exclusive Spanish-language coverage. MLB.TV Premium subscribers in the U.S. have access to watch every tournament game live on any of the streaming service's 400-plus supported devices. The tournament is being distributed internationally across all forms of television, internet, mobile and radio in territories excluding the U.S., Puerto Rico and Japan. Get tickets for games in San Diego's Petco Park and the Championship Round at Dodger Stadium, while complete coverage -- including schedules, video, stats and gear -- is available at WorldBaseballClassic.com.
Matt Kelly is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @mattkellyMLB.