Sveum talks Brewers, Prince Fielder

Dale Sveum is three weeks into his tenure as Cubs manager but has stayed in touch with some of his friends with the Brewers because he’s in the clubhouse fantasy football league. The former Brewers hitting coach has received two types of messages: Some offering congratulations and others along the lines of, “Anybody but the Cubs!”

“I’ve heard from just about all of them in one form, talking to them or text messages or emails,” Sveum said. “All good stuff. I had some pretty good relationships with most of those guys over there, if not all of them. We’ll see them soon enough in Spring Training.”

Sveum took his turn meeting reporters on Tuesday afternoon, following the White Sox’s Robin Ventura, another rookie manager in Chicago. Sveum is the more veteran of the two; he managed Milwaukee for the final 12 regular season games and four playoff games in 2008, and experience that Sveum called important in that it reinforced he was comfortable in the manager’s seat.

Some of the conversation turned to Prince Fielder, the free agent slugger who worked with Sveum in Milwaukee for the past six seasons. The Cubs are among the teams with which Fielder appears a match, though Sveum said the Cubs were “not in any kind of process of talking to him or anything like that yet.”

If they did begin that process, Sveum said he would be a part of it.

“We’re very close,” Sveum said.

He called Fielder “an impact player who impacts the whole team.”

“He’s one of those players who comes around once in a while, once in a lifetime,” Sveum said. “He should have played the game in the 1950s and 60s and 70s, when guys played every day and they played as hard as they possibly could every single day, they cared about winning and cared about their teammates. Prince is all of those things.”

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