The Dallas Morning News
Clevinger feels ‘vindicated’
Pitcher to return after league clears domestic violence allegation
GLENDALE, Ariz. — Chicago White Sox pitcher Mike Clevinger said he feels vindicated and is focusing on the season, speaking two days after Major League Baseball announced he will not be disciplined following the investigation of a domestic violence allegation.
“I appreciate everyone who waited until the verdict was out, waited until the facts came out. I appreciate anyone who didn’t rush to judgment and kept their cool and understood the ramifications of these accusations,” Clevinger said Tuesday before the Chicago White Sox played the Milwaukee Brewers in a spring training exhibition.
“I was confident the whole time. I feel vindicated,” he added. “I guess you could say this was a bad situation, a devastating situation. I’m just trying to move forward. I want to focus on baseball now. Looking forward to helping my family heal from this.”
The commissioner’s office said its investigation included interviews of more than 15 people, including Clevinger and a woman who said she is the mother of Clevinger’s child, as well as thousands of electronic communications and other documents. Clevinger voluntarily agreed to submit to evaluations by the joint treatment boards established by MLB and the players’ association.
“I was an open book to them. I was like, anything you want me to do,” he said. “I’ll do any evaluation boards you want. I’ ll do it all.”
A 32-year-old right-hander, Clevinger pitched for Cleveland from 2016 until being traded to San Diego during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. Clevinger signed a $12 million, one-year contract with the White Sox during the offseason. He expects to pitch sometime in the next week.
Braves still hope Wright ready for season: The Atlanta Braves have reason to hope right-hander Kyle Wright, the majors’ only 20-game winner last season, still has time to be ready for opening day.
If Wright requires more time to prepare for the season, the Braves appear to be developing sufficient depth to fill their rotation.
Wright, 27, has yet to appear in a spring game after having a cortisone shot to address a right shoulder issue in January. He has said his shoulder feels good, but the Braves will be closely monitoring his progress after throwing a bullpen session Tuesday and preparing to throw live batting practice Friday.
If there are no setbacks, Wright could have time to pitch in three spring games, including one next week.
Wright was 21-5 with a 3.19 ERA to lead the majors in wins in his breakout 2022 season. The right-hander added six scoreless innings for Atlanta’s only win in its NL Division Series loss to Philadelphia.
Wright is expected to join Max Fried, Spencer Strider and Charlie Morton as the first four pitchers in Atlanta’s rotation.
Learning the 8-second rule: Pittsburgh outfielder Andrew Mccutchen was penalized an automatic strike for failing to enter the batter’s box and address the pitcher with eight seconds left on the pitch clock in the fourth inning against Toronto on Tuesday.
Mccutchen appeared to be distracted by Blue Jays lefthander Ricky Tiedemann’s movement off the mound and then rushed to enter the box when Tiedemann returned to the mound. Mccutchen’s hasty attempt to beat the eight-second count was too late, and the penalty drew boos from some fans. Mccutchen reached on an infield single in the Pirates’ 7-2 win.
Burnes wants clock to tick his way: Milwaukee ace Corbin Burnes is using his spring training to adjust to the new rules. The 2021 National League Cy Young winner, who had a league-best 243 strikeouts last season, said his goal in three innings against the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday was “to get more comfortable with the pitch clock, and see if we can get some advantages with it.”
“The key to pitching is make the hitter uncomfortable in the box,” Burnes said, adding the advantage is with the pitcher after batters use their one allowed timeout.
Chasing Reds’ rotation spot: The Reds reassigned veteran right-hander Chase Anderson to the major league camp. It is an indication Anderson, 35, has a chance to earn an opening day roster spot for his 10th big league season. The Reds need to fill two starting rotation slots behind their young trio of Hunter Greene, Nick Lodolo and Graham Ashcraft.