Cubs' Clevenger showing improvement

CHICAGO -- For injured Chicago Cubs backup catcher Steve Clevenger, a fracture might be better news than a muscle strain.

Clevenger, currently on the disabled list because of a side injury, actually has a displaced fracture of the cartilage in his rib cage and only a slight oblique strain. He was diagnosed only with an oblique strain when he went on the DL at the start of the last road trip.

Oblique strains can be slow to heal, but since Clevenger’s issue has more to do with the damaged cartilage, his recovery time could be quicker.

“This is baseball, things like this happen, and if you don’t dwell on them and look forward to getting healthy and getting back on the field, it makes you a better person,” Clevenger said. “It gives me a bit more boost that these guys are back in town. I get to go out and watch the game so I’m happy they’re in town. But to hear good news that you’re progressing is always good.”

Clevenger, who injured himself during batting practice on April 27, still doesn’t have a target date for his return. His plan is to start some light swinging by Wednesday at the earliest.

“It would be nice to be a quick healer but you don’t want to rush these things because they can turn serious,” he said. “Instead of a three-week thing it can turn into a three-month thing. So I won’t rush back too soon.”