Altuve said he was prepared to start against the New York Mets, but team officials took the decision out of his hands.
After going 0-for-4 Saturday at Citi Field, Altuve's average slipped to an AL-leading .340. Detroit Tigers designated hitter Victor Martinez lifted his average to .337 with a 1-for-2 performance Saturday against the Minnesota Twins.
"I came to the park today ready to play," Altuve said. "They called me into the office and explained everything. ... I wanted to play. It wasn't my option. They just said no."
Altuve has appeared in 157 games and has 703 plate appearances this season.
"I feel like I'm being honest," he said. "I've been playing most of the games. If it was up to me, I'd play today."