Kerry Wood was not available on Sunday, but it had nothing to do with his performance in the Cubs' first two games. The 34-year-old right-hander was simply getting a day off. Carlos Marmol, who suffered a blown save in the first game and took the loss on Saturday, was available for the series finale against the Nationals. Sveum had no plans on calling his closer in for a pep talk.
"Right now, I don't consider him struggling," Sveum said. "Obviously, the results aren't what we want. [Saturday] with the matchup with [Jayson] Werth, I think he needed to throw some sliders for strikes and he would've been OK."
Instead, Marmol walked Werth, then gave up a two-run single to pinch-hitter Chad Tracy and a RBI double to Roger Bernadina as the Nationals posted a 7-4 win.
What was encouraging for Sveum was the performance by Rafael Dolis, who retired the side in the seventh.
"Sometimes you just have to throw somebody out there to find out if they can pitch in those situations, and [Dolis] did a nice job," Sveum said.
The Cubs started the season 0-2, and both losses came in the late innings. Those can be difficult to deal with.
"One thing you learn in this game is you have to put it to rest and not dwell on it, because that's the kind of stuff that will drive you nuts if that stuff is keeping you up at night," Sveum said. "You've got to move on. That's part of the game. There's a team on the other side of the fence that's doing its best to kick your [backside] as well as you're trying to kick theirs.
"Somebody's going to win, somebody's going to lose," he said. "Sometimes they're easy losses, and sometimes they're really tough, but the bottom line is a loss is a loss, a win is a win, no matter if you win by 12 or lose by 12. They're all the same."