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Cubs’ manager more concerned with day to day than final record

By Paul Sullivan, Chicago Tribune –

MILWAUKEE — While the Chicago Cubs are on pace to lose 100 games for only the third time in franchise history, manager Dale Sveum doesn’t think it’s affecting the players.

“Everybody knows that the 100-loss thing is obviously a number,” Sveum said. “You’re still going day to day. You’re not worried about the final record as much as winning that day.

“That’s the bottom line. Obviously no one wants to lose 100 games. You have to plug away every single day, grind it out.”

One player who can “grind out” at-bats is Bryan LaHair, who fell out of favor last month and now is coming off the bench.

“I still see a ton of pitches,” he said. “Very rarely do I ever go up and come right back. Usually that brings success. Obviously it hasn’t of late, but I know it will.”

LaHair believes he will be given a shot to be a regular again in 2013, but it seems unlikely that will be with the Cubs.

“I just want to be in the big leagues,” he said.

Firing squad: President Theo Epstein said after firing farm director Oneri Fleita last week that more personnel changes would be made. Now he’s carrying through on that promise.

The Cubs announced the firing of six scouts Wednesday, including pro scout Richie Zisk, a former White Sox star. Pro scouts Joe Housey, Tom Shafer and Tom Bourque also were let go, along with two amateur scouts — Rick Schroeder and regional cross-checker Charlie Aliano.

The Cubs have three candidates under consideration as their new farm director, including player development coordinator Alex Suarez and field coordinator Brandon Hyde.

Volstad watch: Chris Rusin is expected to be optioned back to Triple-A Iowa this weekend. Sveum said he plans to keeps Chris Volstad in the rotation for the remainder of the season. Volstad is 0-9 with a 6.88 ERA and has not won in his last 24 starts.

“We’re committed (to Volstad),” Sveum said. “We don’t have any other options to even think about doing anything else, to tell you the truth.”

What about Rusin?

“We have other things to plan out as well,” he said cryptically.

Face-to-face: Sveum was lecturing Josh Vitters in the dugout after a first-inning strikeout Tuesday night. Was it a teachable moment? Sveum thought for a second before answering.

“That was when I was asking him why he didn’t run to first base when the ball got away from the catcher,” he said.

And what was Vitters’ answer?

“You can only imagine,” Sveum replied.

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