Prince Fielder (left) and Miguel Cabrera are hoping to lead the Tigers back to the World Series. (Robert Seale/Sports Illustrated)
Ruth and Gehrig. Mays and McCovey. Ortiz and Ramirez. To the list of great hitting duos in baseball history we can now add one more: Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers. Both were established stars long before coming to Detroit but since joining forces prior to last season, Fielder and Cabrera have become baseball's best 1-2 punch, which makes it only fitting that the sluggers appear together on the cover of this week's Sports Illustrated.
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Part of what makes Fielder and Cabrera so devastating for opponents, writes Michael Rosenberg, is that they almost never take a day off. Fielder is in the midst of a consecutive games streak that is at 406 and counting entering Wednesday night. Cabrera, likewise, has not missed a game all season. "You write those two names down every night, you feel pretty good," Tigers manager Jim Leyland says in the piece.
Cabrera, who last year won the AL MVP and became the first player in 45 years to win the Triple Crown, is having another spectacular season. He leads the major leagues in batting average (.363), on-base percentage (.451), RBIs (69), hits (91) and total bases (162) while also topping the American League in runs (51) and walks (38).
GALLERY: The Cabrera-Fielder SI Shoot
Batting cleanup behind Cabrera, Fielder, is hitting .282 with 12 home runs and 51 RBIs and is a good bet to make his fifth All-Star team.
With those two powering an offense that leads the AL in batting average and ranks second in runs, the Tigers have a 5 1/2 game lead in the AL Central, the biggest advantage in the league as they chase their third consecutive division title and second straight pennant.
GALLERY: Classic Photos of Miguel Cabrera