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Oct. 7 Joe Maddon postgame interview

October 8, 2016

Q. We can talk about the home run, but all year you talked about defense to the point of where it seems like you harped on it. But you really can't say enough about defense, can you, especially the way this game played tonight?JOE MADDON: Not at all. We obviously

Q. We can talk about the home run, but all year you talked about defense to the point of where it seems like you harped on it. But you really can't say enough about defense, can you, especially the way this game played tonight?
JOE MADDON: Not at all. We obviously right from the get-go the bunt and then we throw out at second base and then the pick off at first base. Javy up the middle. Their defense was fabulous tonight. Their second baseman had a hell of a night. Both sides really played an equal kind of a game. Cueto was outstanding, Jon Lester was outstanding, defenses played. It was a classic kind of an old school baseball game, obviously you like to win those things, but give both teams credit. That was really a well-played game of baseball.

Q. Jon Lester, just from -- you get the first guys getting hits, you guys cleaned it up, but I think he retired 10, 12, 13, 14 in a row there.
JOE MADDON: Yeah, he looked good. Even the couple hits, the push bunt was a good play on their part, really well done. Gillaspie, the one into short right field and then a couple dumpers into left. So I think that for the entire evening he was actually throwing the ball really well. But he's really good at cleaning it up. They get -- other teams get base runners, I spoke about that to somebody before the game or maybe during the game itself, ERAs, as good as it is because he really does do well with people on base. I know that's been -- everybody's wanting to run on him and do these different things, but you get out there and Jon does a nice job. Didn't surprise me, I thought he was really calm in his demeanor tonight. I thought he looked very comfortable out there. And of course him and Dave, the synergy between them is incredible. So all of that was obvious tonight, but so was their guy. Cueto was very good. It was a very interesting game, obviously we're happy we won.

And there's a classic example of how big Wrigley Field can play, because Javy absolutely crushed that ball and it barely made it into the basket. And then furthermore probably Posey's ball would have been out on a more neutral night. So that just really depicts how big this ballpark can play.

Q. Homers have played such a big role already in these playoffs. As this game was progressing did you get a sense that a homer might win it and can you talk about Javy hitting it?
JOE MADDON: Yeah, I didn't think too many runs. It was hard to manufacture because both pitchers were doing so well. There just wasn't enough base runners. There was a lot of -- there was not a whole lot of hard contact. We hit a couple balls decently. So normally, yeah, I can't deny. I wasn't thinking that, but you're right, more than likely a game like that would end with a home run. Fortunately again it happened for us.

But my thoughts weren't there. It was just really staying with the bullpen, how is Jonny looking, where is his spot coming up in the batting order, what are they going to do. That's where my focus was.

Q. How about Javy's hitting it?
JOE MADDON: Listen, he's got plenty of power. When he gets enough opportunity, meaning enough at-bats he's definitely a 20-plus home run guy. But I love the base hit to right field, actually. That really -- I don't think it's any coincidence that he ended up hitting a home run because what he had done in his earlier at-bats he was up there working good at-bats he wasn't trying to do too much. Even the home run, I mean, it wasn't his "A" hack, but it was in an area that he can do that with, so he didn't try to force something.

I love when he used the middle opposite field because I think when he does you're going to see more opportunities for the ball to fly far to the left side.

Q. Was Chapman pitching the 9th regardless?
JOE MADDON: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah he was.

Q. Were you prepared to bring him in sooner?
JOE MADDON: Yes, we were. The way that inning was playing out it was 7, 8, 9 coming up, I think it was -- who is 7? Tomlinson. Gillaspie, Cueto. Now, had they gotten somebody on they definitely would have hit for Cueto right there, but they did not so they let him hit. I was pretty much had Chapman-Belt in mind if it got to that particular point, although if they got something a little bit more frisky we could have gone to him earlier, so he was absolutely ready.

Q. That sequence in the 4th inning, the only time they really threatened and Lester got the ground ball to Addison. The confidence in the lift that that gave you as a team. And then just to follow-up, did you got any clarification ever on the switching of the gloves?
JOE MADDON: Yeah, I talked to them before the game Randy Marsh came up to me and it's clearly ambiguous regarding the glove. There's no such rule, but it's just an interpretation on their part. This is what they would like to see. I have no problem with it. It's the semantics involving the first baseman's glove and the first baseman having a first baseman's glove. I still will argue the point, even though Rizzo is playing there he's still the first baseman. So it comes down to proximity to first base. Again, it's a semantical argument. Probably some lawyers put this whole thing together. But for me we're happy to change gloves, it just takes a little bit longer.

Q. And that sequence in the 4th, the lift that gave you.
JOE MADDON: With the --

Q. The ground ball.
JOE MADDON: Yeah. Well, after the fly ball that landed in front? Yeah. That's what I was talking about. Jonny is really -- Jonny does not lose focus in those moments and David does a wonderful job of calling the correct pitch in that moment. So it didn't surprise me. We have done that a lot this year. I loved the pick off at first base also. I thought give David a lot of credit, the throw out at second and then the throw to first and the great tag once again by Javy at first on the pick. Those are all really pertinent plays tonight.

Q. Not many hitters have good numbers against Chapman but Posey does.
JOE MADDON: Yeah, he does.

Q. And then is that something that you just kind of have to ignore because Chapman's your closer and if that comes up again you just let them challenge each other?
JOE MADDON: It depends. Right there, it's funny though when the hitter has good numbers against you, you probably are throwing bad pitches. That was just a hanging breaking ball. Had it been a better pitch, might have been a better result for us.

But you're right, he has done well against Aroldis. It will depend on what's going on in the game and the situation, bases, score, etcetera. But under those circumstances, absolutely you want him to go after him.