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 CLEVELAND (AP) -The cold and flu season has caught up to the Detroit Tigers at the worst time possible.
All-Stars Ivan Rodriguez and Placido Polanco and outfielder Craig Monroe are all sick and were not in the lineup for Wednesday's second AL Central showdown game with the Cleveland Indians.
Closer Todd Jones was not feeling well and neither was Justin Verlander, who is scheduled to start Thursday in New York against the Yankees.
``How's everybody feeling today?'' manager Jim Leyland said as he walked into the Tigers' clubhouse about three hours before the scheduled first pitch. ``Anybody else sick?''
Polanco and Monroe also sat out Monday's 6-2 win in 10 innings that gave the Tigers a one-game lead over the Indians in the AL Central.
``They're sick and there's nothing you can do about that,'' Leyland said. ``I can't do anything about it except play some other guys and hope they give us a chance to win.''
Leyland wasn't sure if any of the players could play if needed.
``I don't know if they're available until a situation comes up in the game,'' he said. ``If there's an emergency, I guess somebody will have to go play.''
Polanco's absence really hurts the Tigers' lineup. He has batted an AL-high .385 since June 28 and scored 29 runs in 34 games.
Rookie Ryan Raburn moved to second base for Polanco, who on Monday set a record by playing in 144 consecutive games without an error - a streak that dates back to July 1, 2006. Mike Rabelo caught rookie Jair Jurrjens, who was brought up from Double-A Erie to make his major league debut against the Indians.
Asked if there was any update on left-hander Kenny Rogers, sidelined since July 29 with swelling in his left elbow, Leyland said, ``He won't be doing any throwing today because he's sick as a dog, too.''
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