Cubs’ Stewart (quad) to open on DLContinue reading.
Cubs’ Stewart facing DL after latest quad delay
LAS VEGAS – Ian Stewart’s on-again, off-again spring is off again – and it probably means the third baseman’s off the Opening Day roster.
“I don’t know if he’s got enough time,” manager Dale Sveum said Sunday as Stewart took a third day off because of continued quad soreness and was scheduled for another MRI on the injured area Monday. “It’ll be interesting.”
Stewart strained the quad running out a double in his first at-bats of the spring, in the Cubs’ Feb. 21 intrasquad game, and didn’t play again until batting five times as a DH in a minor-league game Thursday. He’s been sidelined since.
The Cubs can save $1.5 million of Stewart’s $2 million contract if he’s cut before the April 1 opener, but he’ll more likely open on the disabled list and get an extended shot at returning to the field.
Meanwhile, Stewart’s loss could be catcher Steve Clevenger’s gain. The Cubs don’t plan to carry a third catcher, but the versatility of projected utility man Brent Lillibridge and Stewart-replacement Luis Valbuena gives the Cubs the luxury of considering taking Clevenger’s capable lefty bat.
“Clevenger’s obviously a guy that would be interesting,” said Sveum, who also suggested the Cubs will more closely watch the waiver wire in the next two weeks for backup fits. “It’s nice to have a hitter that’s been as hot as [Clevenger] is. Then you can pinch-run for your catcher. It’s actually an interesting spot.”
Clevenger can also play some corner infield and possibly some second base and/or even the outfield.