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Sveum can relate to injured Louisville star

ATLANTA -- Cubs manager Dale Sveum cringed when he saw the replay of Louisville guard Kevin Ware breaking his leg during the NCAA men's basketball tournament.

In 1988, Sveum's career changed after a freak collision with Brewers teammate Darryl Hamilton. Sveum was playing shortstop and chased a pop fly down the third-base line, crashing into Hamilton, who was playing left. Sveum broke his left leg, which had to be re-fractured a year later because it didn't heal properly.

Seeing Ware go down brought back lots of memories for Sveum.

"I felt horrible about it," Sveum said of Ware, who is in Atlanta with his Louisville teammates for the Final Four. "I went through the same thing. It was kind of a freak accident. His was even stranger to come down and do something like that in such a horrific way. It makes you nauseated, that's for sure. It was one of the more horrible injuries, if not the most horrible injury, we were able to see and witness. Hopefully, he can come back. I don't know if he can come back from something like that. That was eye opening to say the least."

Sveum recalled his injury immediately.

"It's a flashback, knowing exactly how much pain you're in when something like that happens," Sveum said. "You basically kind of go into shock. It's something you'll never forget. I flashback every time [Darwin] Barney or [Starlin] Castro go down this line for a popup.

"It's such a traumatic incident that you'll never forget it," Sveum said.

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.

{"event":["opening_day" ] }
{"event":["opening_day" ] }