Detroit Tigers: 3 Reasons Why Miguel Cabrera Will Set Career Highs in 2012
When discussing the most prolific hitters in all of baseball, it is impossible to leave Miguel Cabrera out of the conversation.
Even though he is in the midst of his worst start as a professional player, there is no doubting Cabrera's ability to fight his way out of it with incredible finesse and power.
Miguel Cabrera is quite possibly the best hitter in the game today, and that is one of the many reasons why he will still set career records for home runs and runs batted in for the 2012 season.
If anyone is able to turn around an early season slump, this is the man for the job. He has been the most consistent player on this team since his arrival in 2008, and there is no reason to doubt his ability whatsoever.
Here are three reasons why he is about to set career records for himself in more areas than one.
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While some may argue that Cabrera had better protection during the 2011 season with Victor Martinez batting fifth behind him, Prince Fielder has filled that role very admirably.
Cabrera's success will likely hinge on the ability of those following Fielder, including Jhonny Peralta, Alex Avila and Delmon Young.
These four will provide a strength in the middle-to-lower area of the batting order that could wreak havoc on opposing defenses night in and night out.
Because of these other players, teams are forced to pitch to Cabrera whether they want to or not. This will give him an adequate amount of pitches to impose his will upon. It is up to him, however, to put the bat on the ball like he always has.
Look for Cabrera to light up once again and battle out of his early slump while putting himself in position to break his own personal career bests.
2. Early Batters
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2012 could be a breakout year for the Tigers' lead-off man.
Austin Jackson is off to his best start in the majors right now, which is great news for Miguel Cabrera. He is currently hitting .319 with a total of 14 walks. During the months of April and May in 2011, Jackson was only hitting .225 with an astounding 64 strikeouts and 19 walks.
If Jackson continues to hit the ball well and get on base, Cabrera will have more chances to knock in runs each and every time he approaches the plate.
The true question that remains is that of Brennan Boesch. While it was anticipated that he would also have a breakout season, he is off to a very tepid start. While he was able to hit a whopping .319 during March and April of 2011, he experienced quite a slump in May, as he hit a dismal .186.
The good news for Detroit fans is that he was able to fight his way out of the cellar and hit .380 during the month of June. With his experience at the major league level, Brennan Boesch will slug his way out of this slump and provide another powerful bat for a potentially potent Detroit lineup.
When he returns to his comfortable form, Boesch will be the No. 2 hitter that Detroit was hoping they would have during the offseason.
With the combination of his bat and Jackson's new-found ability to get on base, Cabrera will have more chances than last year to score runs each night.
1. Home Sweet Home
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There is no doubt that Miguel Cabrera's favorite place to play these days is the friendly confines of Comerica Park.
He has put up some impressive numbers there during his five seasons wearing the old English D. The numbers truly speak for themselves.
2008—BA: .291, RBI: 61, HR: 19
2009—BA: .348, RBI: 59, HR: 19
2010—BA: .342, RBI: 62, HR: 17
2011—BA: .349, RBI: 56, HR: 15
2012 (through 30 games)—BA: .329, 16 RBI, HR: 6
Based on these numbers, it is incredibly safe to assume that Cabrera will continue his path of destruction at Comerica Park during the 2012 season. With the hitters in Detroit's lineup, there is no doubt that they will all help Cabrera to improve upon his fantastic 2011 season.
Even though Cabrera is currently struggling, no true Tigers fan believes that this will continue for much longer. As the weather heats up, so to will the Tigers' bats, and this team will deliver in the way that they were advertised to do during much of the offseason.