Results tagged ‘ Dale Sveum ’

Cactus Notes: Goodbye to Fitch, games are around the corner

MESA, Ariz.–Today was the last day at the Cubs’ practice facility, Fitch Park, which means live games are just around the corner. After workouts this afternoon, the players cleaned out their lockers, packed up their gear and dragged everything over to HoHoKam Park.

Although the first official Cactus League game isn’t until Sunday’s opener with the A’s, the Cubs will play the first of two intrasquad games tomorrow at HoHoKam Park starting at 1 p.m. local time. Randy Wells and new acquisition Travis Wood will start the game, which is free and open to the public.

“It’s time to see guys in action and getting real at-bats,” manager Dale Sveum said in his daily press conference. “It’s finally gotten to that point where it’s time to just play baseball … to see them out there against people in other uniforms.”

Sveum stressed that fans shouldn’t read too much into the starting lineups this weekend, as he’s still experimenting with things.

“I’ll probably have different lineups every day, just looking at things,” he said. “Like I told these guys, don’t look into any of the lineups I’m going to be throwing out in the first week or so. I’m just getting the feel of everything.”

1000 Words: Friendly competition

MESA, Ariz.–Cubs manager Dale Sveum celebrates his win over pitcher Kerry Wood in the first round of the Spring Training bunting tournament. The competition has served as a good icebreaker for the team and helped solidify a necessary fundamental. But it’s also stoking the players’ (and the manager’s) competitive fire. (Photo by Stephen Green)

Cactus Notes: Cubs add intrasquad games

MESA, Ariz.–The Cubs announced today that they will gear up for the Cactus League season by playing two intrasquad games on Friday and Saturday at HoHoKam Park. Manager Dale Sveum said he would manage one of the sides, while Triple-A manager Dave Bialas likely manages the other.

Now Playing: Mesa Cubscast with Dale Sveum and Chris Bosio

MESA, Ariz.–On Monday morning, Vine Line sat down with new manager Dale Sveum and pitching coach Chris Bosio to talk about their first Cubs camp, their goals for the team and the now famous bunting competition.

Cactus Notes: Sveum edges Wood in bunting competition

MESA, Ariz.–It was like a heavyweight fight: two evenly matched competitors slugging away at each other. But when the final round of Monday’s bunting competition was over, only new manager Dale Sveum was left standing.

In a back-and-forth battle between Sveum and right-hander Kerry Wood, Sveum advanced through the first round only after Wood’s final bunt edged into the 20-point box, instead of the 40-point box Wood needed for the victory.

“I got lucky by the way the grass was growing to the east,” Sveum said. “The ball kind of fell off the white line. I thought I was done, and I was going to shake his hand, and the ball just trickled off the white line at the end.”

This spring, Sveum created a NCAA tourney-style bracket, pitting 62 Cubs players and two coaches against each other in a bunting competition. Chalk lines have been drawn on one of the infields at Fitch Park, and different point totals are awarded depending on where the ball lands. Each competitor gets 24 pitches over three rounds and is required to bunt 12 to the first base side and 12 to the third base side.

This was the final first-round draw, with the exception of the matchup between Paul Maholm and Rodrigo Lopez. Their contest has been postponed while Maholm recovers from the flu. Carlos Marmol, Marlon Byrd, Ryan Dempster, Geovany Soto, David Dejesus and Jeff Baker also advanced on Monday.

“It’s a fun thing, but also a lot of people really want to get better and care about it,” Sveum said. “Sacrifice bunting is something that’s very important to the game, and it’s kind of been lost a little over the years.

“You get a feeling of guys who are bearing down and competing, and some guys who aren’t competing as well. You get to know somebody a little bit through this tournament.”

Cactus Notes: Injury updates

MESA, Ariz.–New Cubs pitcher Paul Maholm threw a side session on Monday but was sent home afterward, as he is still recovering from the flu. Although Maholm was slated to compete against Rodrigo Lopez in the Cubs bunting competition this afternoon, their matchup was postponed by manager Dale Sveum.

“I think he got a little sick–a little lightheaded–and is still a little dehydrated from being sick,” Cubs manager Dale Sveum said.

Shortstop Starlin Castro showed no ill effects after being hit in the forearm by a fastball from pitcher Kerry Wood during live batting practice on Monday. Castro, who was immediately examined by assistant trainer Ed Halbur, stepped back in against Wood later in the round and participated in all other drills throughout the day.

“He’s fine,” Sveum said. “I wasn’t there to witness it. It sounded a little more scary, but he’s fine. He stepped right in and did all his drills after that. It was almost like he didn’t get hit.”

Cactus Notes: Lopez to start spring opener

MESA, Ariz.–Manager Dale Sveum announced today that Rodrigo Lopez will start the Cactus League opener on Sunday versus the Oakland A’s. He’ll be followed in the rotation by Ryan Dempster on March 5, also against the A’s, and Matt Garza on March 6 against the Rockies.

Although Dempster was the Cubs’ Opening Day starter in 2011, Sveum said not to read too much into that pitching order.

“We’ll make that decision in the middle [of Spring Training],” Sveum said. “It’s set up to where we’re good with whatever we decide.”

Cubs Spring Training tickets on sale tomorrow

Looking for a way to shake the winter blues? We have three simple words for you: Baseball is back.

Individual tickets for Chicago Cubs Spring Training home games will be available online starting tomorrow, Jan. 5, at 10 a.m. CST. Join us at sunny HoHoKam Park in Mesa, Ariz., for the start of the 2012 Cubs season under new manager Dale Sveum. The Cactus League season kicks off against the Oakland Athletics on Sunday, March 4, at 1:05 p.m.

For more information about Cubs Spring Training tickets, go to

BREAKING NEWS: Cubs find their next manager in Dale Sveum

The Cubs will introduce new manager Dale Sveum, a 12-year big leaguer who has coached for the Red Sox and most recently the Brewers, tomorrow morning at Wrigley Field’s United Club. Vine Line will have coverage in the December issue of as well as more on this blog in the coming days.

Inside the search: Sandy Alomar Jr. addresses reporters

Last Friday, the Cubs interviewed former big league catcher Sandy Alomar Jr. for the managerial job, concluding meetings with four candidates that team brass suggested may encompass the set they talk to. If you missed the video over the weekend on, click the image above for another Vine Line look inside the manager search, and subscribe for your insider’s pass to the new era at Wrigley Field.

The field: Sandy Alomar Jr., Pete Mackanin, Dale Sveum and Mike Maddux.