Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
news

Indians News

Injury recovery includes a dose of fun for Kluber

@MandyBell02
June 10, 2019

CLEVELAND -- Corey Kluber has had a tough time watching his team from the sideline, but the Indians hurler has slowly begun to return to regular activities. He’s able to run and work out on cardio machines at the gym. He’s able to lift weights with his lower body. He’s

CLEVELAND -- Corey Kluber has had a tough time watching his team from the sideline, but the Indians hurler has slowly begun to return to regular activities.

He’s able to run and work out on cardio machines at the gym. He’s able to lift weights with his lower body. He’s becoming more comfortable eating left-handed and folding laundry while using his non-dominant hand and his teeth. But the easiest action of all may have been hosting his second-annual Corey Kluber Baseball ProCamp for over 200 kids, offering hands-on instruction at Mentor High School on Monday.

“It’s a lot of fun to get out and see how much enjoyment they get out of being outside, running around and just playing the game,” Kluber said. “It reminds you that as much of a job as it is for us, it is still a game and you should enjoy it and have fun with it.”

The campers participated in some drills inside the school’s gyms before moving outside to play wiffle ball games on the turf. The participants were broken up into age groups, as Kluber and local high school and college coaches gave tips to all the kids in attendance.

“It’s fun to see,” Kluber said. “You start with the younger kids and they’re out there swinging, just running around, trying to have a good time. Eventually, you [make] your way to the older kids and they’re out there actually playing the game, competing against each other. It’s fun to see the different age groups -- what they get out of it.”

Kluber rotated between watching, instructing and even squatting down behind the dish -- though he was sure to toss the ball back to the mound with his left hand.

“I’m getting better at it,” Kluber said with a grin. “I’m not sure I’m quite ready to be ambidextrous, but I’m getting better at it.”

The 33-year-old is set for his six-week checkup with doctors this week after fracturing his right ulna in his May 1 start in Miami. At that point, they may be able to get a better idea of when Kluber may be able to rejoin his team. For now, his arm remains in a removable splint, a protection that only comes off when he does his range-of-motion exercises.

“We haven’t even gotten to that point of discussing what the buildup would look like because that’s not where we’re at right now,” Kluber said. “[I’m] trying to focus on what I can do right now. I think the more I can avoid looking forward, the less frustrating it’ll be for me.

“Luckily, I’m past the initial stages [with] the throbbing and stuff like that. People who’ve had broken bones know what I’m talking about. That stuff’s gone.”

Kluber’s injury came almost a month after Mike Clevinger was placed on the 60-day injured list with an upper back strain. Then, the two hurlers had to watch from afar as one of their replacements, Jefry Rodriguez, went down with a shoulder strain before Carlos Carrasco had to step away from baseball to address a blood condition that he was recently diagnosed with.

“I’m not gonna lie, it’s tough,” Kluber said. “Whether you’re a pitcher, position player -- if you miss extended time, nobody enjoys that. You want to be out there, you want to be with your teammates, you want to be trying to help contribute. The way I’ve approached it, I’m not able to do that for whatever the time period is, and I’m gonna do my best to get myself prepared for when the time does come so I can make sure I’m in the best position possible to help the team when that time comes.”

Mandy Bell covers the Indians for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter at @MandyBell02.