One question that keeps coming up, apart from his weight, is M-Cab's ability to hit in the AL, after being in "AAAA" to start his career. So, let's take a look how he has fared in interleague play in his career and for the last 4 years.
In looking at his career, the .880 OPS is 40 points lower than his overall .920 OPS. However, if you look at it in terms of recent performance, in both 2006 and 2007 he has raked, especially with the 1.063 OPS this last year. The career number is lower due to a 2005 in which he struggled, and a 2004 that was his first full year in the majors.
Taking these stats into account, I have no concern of how a new Cabrera would fare in the AL. My point of view is that if we can make the trade while avoiding giving up Howie, you have to do it. If Kendrick does end up being a must, then it's probably a matter of how much else we'd have to give up.
Also, kudos to baseball-reference.com for the easy to find stats.