Originally written on Fox Sports Detroit  |  Last updated 11/20/14

MIAMI - OCTOBER 22: Right fielder Miguel Cabrera #20 of the Florida Marlins hits the ball during game four of the Major League Baseball World Series against the New York Yankees on October 22, 2003 at Pro Player Stadium in Miami, Florida. The Marlins won 4-3 in 12 innings. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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DETROIT -- Miguel Cabrera at 80 percent -- or whatever he is -- is better than most players at 100 percent. He knows it, manager Jim Leyland knows it and his teammates certainly know it. Without Cabrera, they have no chance of passing the Chicago White Sox and winning the Central Division. Cabrera's right ankle is bothering him, probably enough that if it were earlier in the season or the Tigers were out of the playoff race, he wouldn't be playing. "My leg hurts, not my hands," Cabrera said. "My hands and my mind, they're good." It was Cabrera who staked the Tigers to a 2-0 lead in the first inning Friday against the White Sox with a two-run homer off Jake Peavy. It was Cabrera who lead off the fifth with a double, then tagged up and took third on Prince Fielder's fly-out to center field. Although Cabrera didn't score, it was a good example of the things he tries to do to help his team. In the pivotal seventh inning, Cabrera followed ...
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