Chicago Sun-Times
with sports reporters Chris De Luca and Gordon Wittenmyer

Cubs' morning chemistry classes

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MESA, Ariz. -- Among the changes in camp with the new manager and field staff is a morning routine of daily team meetings that Dale Sveum picked up as a member of Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke's coaching staff.

Roenicke got it from Mike Scioscia as a member of Scioscia's staff in Anaheim.

Sveum's recent predecessors, by contrast, weren't big meetings guys.

``Actually, it evolved, and then it evolved into a little elongated thing that kind of came out of nowhere,'' Sveum said. ``The [Milwaukee] players really liked it and had a lot of fun with it. It actually continued into the season - but kind of didn't last too long.''

More than anything, it's another chemistry-building tool, something that involves all the players in one thing at one time, a little like the team bunting tournament.

``Everybody gets to talk. We just have some fun with certain topics and whatever it might be,'' Sveum said. ``Go over what went on in the game before - the good things. All the negative things you talk about individually or in another atmosphere. ...''

The Cubs started the routine Saturday, the day after their first of two intrasquad games.

``It was fun [in Milwaukee]. You bring up the minor the minor fines and stuff - who hasn't paid, this and that,'' Sveum said. ``Just that time when you get everybody together, in a good atmosphere and get the day started right.''

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I'm a little surprised that this is not the traditional approach with all managers. It makes perfectly good sense and prevents personal gripes and animosity from building up. Daily venting of minor issues is a solid approach, and those morning meetings should build comraderie.

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This page contains a single entry by Gordon Wittenmyer published on March 5, 2012 12:25 PM.

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