Detroit Tigers designated hitter Victor Martinez may be able to return to the team before the end of the season, according to Tom Gage of the Detroit News.
New hope from #Tigers for Victor Martinez to return late this season - didn't need ACL reconstruction - won't know until July, though
— Tom Gage (@Tom_Gage) April 11, 2012
It had previously been believed that Martinez, 33, would be forced to miss the entirety of 2012 after he tore his left ACL during offseason conditioning in January. Recent reports indicate, however, that Martinez did not need a complete ACL restriction, which could allow him to return to the club late this season.
Martinez hit .330/.380/.470 with 12 home runs and 103 RBI last year in his first season with the Tigers. The four-time All-Star’s absence is believed to be part of the reason Detroit made the push to sign slugger Prince Fielder this offseason, despite the presence of Miguel Cabrera. With the acquisition of Fielder, the Tigers opted to move Cabrera across the diamond to third base in order to keep the designated hitter position vacant upon Martinez’s return.