MESA, Ariz. -- Thursday was just another Cactus League game for Cubs manager Dale Sveum, but not for Chicago fans. Thursday was Round 1 of Cubs vs. White Sox.
"I've got to be honest, they just run into each other," Sveum said of the Cactus League games. "It's just another Cactus League game where guys are just getting their work in, getting their at-bats, getting their innings in. It's a little tough to think you're going to be super serious when you don't have your [regular] lineup out there, they won't have their lineup out there. It still in the preliminary stages of Spring Training where, obviously, two weeks from now, if we had five or six games left, you'd have your team out there and start playing matchups and doing the things you'd do during the season."
This season, the Cubs-White Sox series has been condensed into a four-game stretch from May 27-30, with two games at each ballpark. Because there are now 15 teams in each league, there will be Interleague games every day during the season.
"We're all going to play the same amount of games against Interleague Play," Sveum said. "It'll be sporadic from Day 1. It's not something you have to deal with. It's just going to be earlier than normal."
There will be a slight difference. In the past, the Cubs usually had all of their games versus American League teams during two stretches of the season, and would add a player to be the designated hitter. This year, the games are spread out, and that may not be an option.
The Cubs will play the Rangers April 16-18 at Wrigley Field; travel to Anaheim June 4-5, Seattle June 28-30 and Oakland July 2-4; and play host to the Angels July 9-10.
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.