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Oct. 22 Joe Maddon postgame interview

October 23, 2016

THE MODERATOR: First question. Q. I know we talk about Javy's instincts for baseball quite a bit, but to do it on this stage in this level of pressure, what does that speak to him as a player? JOE MADDON: Obviously he's able to control his emotions, he plays it

THE MODERATOR: First question.
Q. I know we talk about Javy's instincts for baseball quite a bit, but to do it on this stage in this level of pressure, what does that speak to him as a player?
JOE MADDON: Obviously he's able to control his emotions, he plays it as it should be, it's a game. That's how he plays it. He grew up in Puerto Rico, played a lot of baseball as a youth, played a lot of winter ball. He's been taught properly and well. And when he goes out there, man, you saw him before the game sitting on the bench, saw him waving into the camera, he's just being himself. I love that.
I love everything about that because when he goes out there he's not afraid of making a mistake, and that's big thing when you get players that are en masse not concerned about making mistakes, really good stuff can happen. That's, he leads the pack with that.
Q. You talked about taking things through the process and not thinking too far ahead, but what was it like when you guys got the double play to end it, and is it different than what you expected?
JOE MADDON: It's one of those things that it's everything you think it is, but then again you have to -- you need time to really process the entire situation. You stand out on that platform afterwards and you're looking at the ballpark and the fans and the W flags everywhere, and truthfully I do think about everybody, I think about the fans and their parents and their grandparents and great-grandparents and everything that's been going on here for a while. So you think that -- I think about my coaching staff. My coaching staff gets to go to the World Series. From a financial perspective that's great for coaches because baseball coaches in the Major League level don't really make that much money. People don't realize that. So I think about them and their families. All these things come to your mind. I think about my wife, Jaye, my kids, my mom back in Pennsylvania, my dad who wasn't here. Those are the kind of things you think about in that particular moment, and it's pretty -- it's overwhelming and it's awesome.
Q. This was a two-hit ballgame.
JOE MADDON: Yeah, it was.
Q. You said this was one of your best played ball games this year. What does that say about in a clincher like this?
JOE MADDON: That's my point. We had a stuff start with this series. They're up 2-1, and all of a sudden a bunt turns the whole thing around. That and then we got out of that winning with Montgomery, took out John Lackey, and almost got out of it clean, but on the double play ball that went off the glove. But that's a big moment, holding the lead right there.
So to me there's two seminal moments, probably is the bunt and that particular play where it goes a ground ball to short. We didn't make the play, we get out of the inning only giving up two runs. Those are really big moments in this series, I think.
Yeah, listen, before the game our guys were fine. In the dugout our guys were fine. They look the same to me all the time. I really anticipate and expect to us play the same kind of game moving forward. It's the World Series, absolutely. It's the grandest stage. But I don't want our guys to change a thing. Our prep's not going to be any different. It will be optional batting practice like there was today. I don't want any more work. I don't want extra study. I want us just to do what we normally do during -- we have to stay maybe -- we haven't played Cleveland, so that's one thing that might require a little bit more attention, but after that initial study moment, then I just want to get back to normal.
Q. I was actually going to ask about what was going through your mind as the double play happened. You answered that. But I will ask, over the last hour or so, has there been an embrace, some words exchanged that really have stuck with you like until now, one of the guys on the team, a coach, a GM, anything that has meant something to you?
JOE MADDON: Honestly, it's just we have all been congratulating one another. It was very special to me to be on the podium out there with Mr. Ricketts and Jed and Theo and Crane. For them to have the faith to bring me in here to do this, it's pretty phenomenal. The conversations, getting here and then the work we have done together, and it's really wide open. It's wide-open communication. And like I talked about before the game began, they're different, because they're able to process the new methods as well as the old methods. And that's what I think sets them apart. That's part of why I really enjoy working with them as much as we do. So, that was special being up there. Really special looking into the crowd. When you're on that moment up front like that and you just look around and you look out at the bleachers and it's -- that's kind of one of those surreal things right there; that you really want to slow it down and really try to take a mental snapshot so you don't forget that.
But then it's the age when you got to these moments, things happen too quickly. And the smart thing to do I think is just really -- like our players, just slow the moment down and really, really enjoy it, because it is that special.
Q. I know you talked about the bunt play, but you're down 2-1 in the series, guys aren't hitting, was it all just a bunt play that turned it around, or what turned this thing around?
JOE MADDON: Zobrist gets on and then right after that Javy, one-hand hit, Contreras a blooper, and then I think we get a ground-out score with Jason, and then a homer. It really -- it's amazing when you are in that tight of a situation, they had a young pitcher going, too, so you put a little pressure out there, and it could just start with a bunt. All of a sudden there's a base runner, my thought process changes, not knowing how long I'm going to be out here. All this crazy stuff goes through your mind. So it is that simple. That's the butterfly effect right there. It was a bunt this year.
Q. What impressed you about the way that Kyle pitched today?
JOE MADDON: That he was able to pitch typically. The command. When Kyle doesn't walk people and he is commanding the edges and not getting in bad counts, he gets -- the worst count I want to see him get into is a 2-1 count. He's still able to wiggle out of 2-1 counts really well. The 3-1 and eventually the walks, that puts a lot more pressure on him to make even better pitches. So when's doing what he did tonight, primarily hitting his spots, not walking people, keeping it at 2-1, 2-2, I don't know how many three ball counts, he didn't have many tonight. That's what I was watching. You could see the reaction, their swings were not good.
Again, one of his strong points is to elicit weak contact, and that's what he did again tonight.
Q. On the field, minutes after you guys had accomplished something that hadn't been done here in 70 years, almost to a man a lot of guys were saying we still have four more wins --
Q. -- to go. And they talked about embracing the target. Are you just glad that they have managed to latch on to that, or are you surprised that they so quickly focused on that again?
JOE MADDON: Not at all. Like I said, we have a lot of -- you saw a lot of young guys on the field for us tonight. But the veterans in that clubhouse are spectacular. They keep them focused on all of these things. David Ross is in here just for a pat on the back, John Lackey already say he didn't come out for a haircut, because that was the line. Lester's been there, done that before. So these guys, they're not just satisfied by getting to this point. We want to win this whole thing.
And so they're the ones that do a great job of keeping the younger players mentally in line. Because I don't say anything. One of the reporters asked me in the scrum in there, and I said, no, I didn't say anything to anybody. I can only hurt them right now. I cannot help them. Maybe something like talking about hitting or maybe a pitch selection kind of thing, but not to give any kind of rah-rah speech. I would only screw things up right now.
THE MODERATOR: All right. Thank you.