Tigers 'optimistic' Cabrera could start season

Lakeland, FL ( - Detroit Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera is making progress in his recovery after offseason surgery and has been cleared to hit and throw, the team announced Wednesday.

"Dr. Robert Anderson's review of Miguel Cabrera's CT scan displayed a good progression of healing," the Tigers said in a statement. "Miguel has been cleared to initiate non-impact baseball activities, including hitting and throwing, and will begin a running progression until full weight-bearing is achieved. While there is no definitive timetable, it's optimistic Miguel could be ready close to opening day."

Cabrera had a CT scan taken in Miami on Tuesday. He had surgery in late October to remove bone spurs from his right ankle. However, a stress fracture to the navicular bone in Cabrera's foot was discovered and repaired during the same procedure.

The two-time American League MVP was clearly hampered running the bases last season and finished with a .313 batting average, 25 home runs and 109 RBI in 159 games.