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Tigers' Miguel Cabrera returns to lineup against Astros

Tigers' Miguel Cabrera returns to lineup against Astros
Tigers sluggerMiguel Cabrerais all smiles as he prepares for his return to the lineup. (Charlie Riedel / Associated Press)

Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera is off the disabled list and back in the starting lineup.

The two-time AL MVP was activated for Friday night's game at Houston. He was playing first base and batting third.

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Cabrera hasn't played since July 3 because of a strained left calf. He began the day batting .350 with 15 home runs and 54 RBIs in 77 games. The Tigers are five games behind in the race for the second AL wild-card spot.

This was Cabrera's first stint on the disabled list. He's in his 13th major league season.

The Tigers optioned left-hander Kyle Ryan to Triple-A Toledo to make room for Cabrera on the roster.

Giants pursue Utley

San Francisco made a trade offer for Chase Utley after the Philadelphia second baseman cleared waivers this week. Several teams are expected to compete for the services of Utley, 36, who has spent all 13 of his major league seasons with the Phillies and can veto any trade. He might opt to join a team with which he could count on starting for the rest of the season. Giants All-Star second baseman Joe Panik has been on the DL since Aug. 2 because of inflammation in his back.

Etc.

Oakland ace Sonny Gray, scratched from his start Thursday at Toronto because of back spasms, reported feeling better after treatment with muscle relaxants and massage and could rejoin the A's rotation Monday. . . . Outfielder Josh Hamilton rejoined Texas' lineup after an MRI test showed no structural damage in his sore left knee. He had missed two games. The Rangers also said left-hander Cole Hamels, scratched from his start Thursday at Minnesota because of a sore left groin, is on track to make his next start. . . . Atlanta signed veteran right-hander Edwin Jackson for the remainder of the season and will use him out of the bullpen. He was released last month by the Cubs, who are responsible for his $13-million salary next season. . . . Milwaukee right-hander Mike Blazek will miss the rest of the season because of a broken bone in his pitching hand. The reliever said he did not know how the injury occurred.

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