Clevenger gives Cubs an option at third base

Clevenger gives Cubs an option at third base
MESA, Ariz. -- Steve Clevenger isn't expected to see a lot of time at third base this season for the Cubs, but knowing that he can play there gives the team another avenue to get him some playing time.

Clevenger made 51 appearances as a catcher for the Cubs last season and has seen some time at first base, but getting him time at the hot corner on Wednesday night was something the Cubs wanted to see before Spring Training concluded.

"It went good. I feel comfortable over there," Clevenger said. "I was drafted as a shortstop, so I played my first year at short and second. I just need the repetition in the games, I think, but I don't feel weird over there. I'm not nervous at all."

Manager Dale Sveum gave Clevenger, who has been one of the better hitters in camp with an average around .400 and five doubles, a solid review for his play at third against the Royals. He only had two balls hit to him, fielding a scorcher from Salvador Perez and starting a 5-4-3 double play in his other chance.

"It's one of those things where he hasn't played there in so long, I'm sure he hasn't had a ball hit to him as hard as Perez hit to him in quite a while," Sveum said. "Hey, he did it. We're not asking him to set the world on fire or play there every day or anything like that. But certain situations might come up to get his at-bat in the lineup or double-switch and get him two at-bats if we're down by four in the sixth inning, stuff like that."

Clevenger entered Thursday's game against the Mariners at first base, replacing starter Anthony Rizzo in the third inning.

John Schlegel is a national reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.