GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Chicago Cubs plan on making the Final Four of their inaugural bunt tournament a festive happening, at least for the players anyway.
Manager Dale Sveum, who invented the teaching-aid-turned-competitive affair, said that the semifinals and finals will take place on a back field at HoHoKam Park on Friday and will not only have seating available for players to watch but will be catered by a local restaurant as well.
DeJesus will take on catcher Welington Castillo in the championship match of the position players’ bracket while Casey Coleman will face Paul Maholm in the final match of the pitchers’ bracket. The finals will follow immediately after the semifinals are complete.
Fans attending Friday’s game against the San Francisco Giants might be able to catch a glimpse of the proceedings. The short field in the back of the spring training complex is visible from the grass berm beyond the right-field wall. The competition will start after the Cubs finish pregame batting practice.
In a change from previous matches in the tournament, scoring in the semifinals and finals will be conducted over five rounds. Previously, scores were tallied by placing bunts into marked squares down each base line over three rounds. Each player gets four bunts in a round.