What has Sveum heard about the new park?
"It sounds like it's huge, it sounds like it's really big," he said. "The gaps are huge, just watching a little bit of the games I've watched. There have been some balls crushed that are outs. [The Marlins] have some speed. It turns into a triples ballpark, so that's one of the things you have to be aware of. Balls in the gap are triples, not doubles, and you have to be aware of that and try to eliminate the slugging percentage, especially early in the inning when there's no outs or one out."
The Cubs will miss facing Carlos Zambrano, who was traded to Miami in January for pitcher Chris Volstad.
"He was a teammate of mine for a lot of years," said Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster, who will start Tuesday. "He's a good person and was a good friend to me. I'm excited to see him and glad we don't have to face him, because I know how good he can be."
After Sveum was hired as the Cubs manager, he did talk to Zambrano on the phone. The Cubs' clubhouse is definitely quieter without Zambrano.
"You hear about certain things and you hear what a good guy he was in the clubhouse and guys liked him, but obviously, he'd go off the handle a little bit once in a while," Sveum said. "Personally, I can't even comment [on Zambrano], because I don't know him that well besides a phone call after I got the job. Obviously, he had some really good years, and he's a heck of a pitcher."
The Cubs have had fewer distractions this season.
"It's early in the year, but that's one thing you try to do as a manager is keep everybody on the same playing field every single day and communicate. And as a manager, you have to be the same guy every day," Sveum said. "You keep going; it's a long season."