3/3 Cubs bunt tourney update

The Cubs bunting tournament has narrowed the field of 64 to the sweet 16, but no matches were expected to be held until Monday. Dale Sveum told the players Saturday that catcher Steve Clevenger now is the No. 1 guy to beat. Clevenger upset Tony Campana in the first round.

“Whether he can handle that pressure, I don’t know,” Sveum said. “He seems to have no heart rate.”

Sveum advanced with a win over Ryan Dempster on Friday.

“[Dempster] was one of the favorites and definitely spent more time practicing than anybody else,” Sveum said. “I don’t think he was real happy with yesterday’s result.”

The tourney has shifted to the back field and it’s quicker than the other field they were using at Fitch Park.

“It’s like a nice putting green back there,” Sveum said. “It’s a lot quicker, so you have to really deaden the ball.”

The final 16 entries are being seeded and Sveum hopes to have the championship match March 15. Sveum has himself as the No. 2 seed.

“It’s my baby,” he said of the tourney. “I’m seeding everybody and running this thing.”

— Carrie Muskat 

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