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Oct. 22 Dave Roberts postgame interview

October 22, 2016

Q. What did you see from Clayton tonight? DAVE ROBERTS: I think that the first thing I saw is the Cubs hitters, they had a great game plan tonight. And there was a couple mistake sliders that they took advantage of. But they were running counts, they used the whole

Q. What did you see from Clayton tonight?
DAVE ROBERTS: I think that the first thing I saw is the Cubs hitters, they had a great game plan tonight. And there was a couple mistake sliders that they took advantage of. But they were running counts, they used the whole field, and there was traffic all night for Clayton. And he gave it everything he had, but when they did -- when he did make a mistake, they made him pay.
We have asked a lot of Clayton all year long, so, again, it's just more of you got to give those hitters credit.
Q. Conversely, what was the plan against Kyle?
DAVE ROBERTS: I thought we had a plan to get the ball up, but this guy was ERA leader, he pitched well all year long, he consistently made pitches, didn't make any mistakes tonight, kept the ball down, kept us off balance. And I think that you could have a plan, but if the opposing pitcher doesn't make mistakes, then it's still tough to execute. I thought, again, Kyle pitched a perfect game.
Q. From day one of Spring Training, you've been an in-the-moment manager, and I know it's very soon to ask this question, but what can you say to reflect on this team this year?
DAVE ROBERTS: I just think that there was a lot of growth and I think that how we came together as a team, not only the 25 guys in the clubhouse but guys that helped us get to where we're at tonight, just the way we played the game every night, with certain adversities, that our guys were accountable, made no excuses all year long.
And I think with that for me that's something that's a silver lining that really I think going forward, the groundwork of how we play the game, I think that the result -- we were short, we came up short, but the result on how we played, there's a lot to be said for that.
Q. Last three games we saw a little bit of sloppiness out there. How disappointing is it to just kind of end the season on that note?
DAVE ROBERTS: Yeah, it's a little bit of a sour taste. Obviously, if we play a clean three games in 4, 5, 6 there could have been a different outcome. And very uncharacteristic of our guys. When you make plays and pitch counts change and the next hitter that's coming up, the outs, everything changes.

So, yeah, when you look back these last three games, to not play our best baseball, there's a little sour taste.

Q. You mentioned earlier the fact that you guys had asked a lot from Clayton. Do you think fatigue was a factor at all given everything he did in the Division Series?
DAVE ROBERTS: I don't think so. This is kind of ironically one of the few days that he did have extra rest, and the psyche, the preparedness obviously is never in question, and it's just one of those nights that they took advantage of some mistakes.

Q. Kenley was a great pitcher entering the season, but in this past month he seems to have really transcended. He blew through three innings like nothing. What can you say about him?
DAVE ROBERTS: Kenley, one of the players that I just really -- as I'm proud of all the guys, but Kenley's growth and just really solidifying as an elite closer in the game, there just should be no mistake now and on the biggest stage to go out there and throw three innings and to be so unselfish and to be dominant, says a lot about his character and obviously his skill set.

So, without that and core at the back end, our season would have been dramatically different.

Q. I know you probably were hoping for more offense in the Washington series, but you found a way to get it done in five games. This series, also not a lot of hits to go around, couldn't find a way to get it done in the end, just the difference here these last few games.
DAVE ROBERTS: It's just one of those things where the postseason, you're going to run into some great pitching, ones, twos and threes. And the execution is a lot more -- there's a higher percentage of execution. And, yeah, we didn't swing the bats great in the Division Series but found a way to win games.

This series, those guys, you got to tip your hat, they pitched well. And even that first game against Hendricks that we won, it was a 1-0 game. So this kid went out there and threw the baseball really well against us. And their whole staff, they did a great job keeping us at bay.

Q. Cubs had the best record in baseball this year. Based on what you saw, is that an accurate reflection of who they are?
DAVE ROBERTS: Absolutely. Absolutely. Up to this point, to the World Series, they have gone wire to wire. They win a hundred-plus games, they have really no weaknesses, and youth, veterans, starting pitching, they got the guy at the back end, so they catch the baseball, they can slug, they get on base, and they're relentless.

So, they played -- they took advantage of our mistakes, but that's a very good club over there, and they outplayed us this series.

Q. We have talked a lot about your team and just kind of how gutsy it was kind of all year. In the end, though, against these guys, were they just the more talented team?
DAVE ROBERTS: You know what, I think that they beat us. We made mistakes. And you hate to have sour grapes, but the better team won the series. That's why you play seven-game series, and they showed it.