Cabrera went 3-for-4 and batted in six runs, giving him 40 homers and a major league-best 129 RBI for the season. The Detroit third baseman also is tops in the American League with a .333 batting average.
Austin Jackson went 3-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored in the victory.
Darin Downs (2-1) earned the win with 2 2/3 shutout innings in relief of starter Max Scherzer, who was taken out of the game after two frames with right shoulder fatigue.
The team later said a magnetic resonance imaging exam revealed no structural damage.
A.J. Griffin (6-1) was roughed up for five runs on eight hits over 4 2/3 innings for the AL wild card-leading A's, who dropped the opener of a three-game series.
Brandon Moss went 3-for-4 with an RBI for Oakland.