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Mike Clevinger feels vindicated, expects to pitch in next week


White Sox pitcher Mike Clevinger fields ground balls during practice at Camelback Ranch on Feb. 22, 2023, in Glendale, Ariz. (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)


GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Chicago White Sox pitcher Mike Clevinger said he feels vindicated and is focusing on the season, speaking 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 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 one-year, $12 million contract with the White Sox during the offseason. He expects to pitch sometime in the next week.

Asked what he learned, Clevinger said: “You’ve got to really watch who you trust. And I’ll leave it at that.”

Clevinger said his teammates have been supportive.

“I’ve felt bad this whole time they’ve had to answer any questions,” he said. “I’m ready for them to not have to answer to this.”

In an Instagram post on Jan. 24, Olivia Finestead said she is the mother of Clevinger’s child and alleged he fathered two other children who were not hers. She posted a photo of marks on her body with accompanying words that alleged the injuries were “from when he threw an iPad at me pregnant” and “finally left when he strangled me.”

The Associated Press typically does not identify victims of domestic violence or sexual assault unless they agree to be named or come forward publicly with their allegations, as Finestead had.