Q. David, how's your neck and back feeling?DAVID PERALTA: Feel pretty good. Feel much better today. Still got time. I'll be ready for Wednesday.
Q. A.J., can you address how the emphasis on defense has been part of this 24-game win turnaround and how that started from Spring Training and
Q. David, how's your neck and back feeling?
DAVID PERALTA: Feel pretty good. Feel much better today. Still got time. I'll be ready for Wednesday.
Q. A.J., can you address how the emphasis on defense has been part of this 24-game win turnaround and how that started from Spring Training and rolled right through the season.
A.J. POLLOCK: Yeah, I think, when you look around at the teams in the league that are consistently making the playoffs, it's pitching and defense. I think we've got a really good defense. I think we've got a lot of guys that can make plays for us. Defense never slumps. We expect to have good defense every day.
The hitting is kind of streaky. Should always be out there to be able to make plays for the pitchers and for your team.
Q. For either one of you, what has made Torey so successful as a manager this year? What are his strengths? What has he done to kind of make a difference for you guys?
DAVID PERALTA: I think the difference for us is communication, and the way he came to us in the beginning and said, hey, we're just going to play as a team. We're going to be a big family. He's communicated about whatever moves he's going to do and everything. I think we can appreciate that. He brings a lot of energy, good energy, good vibes, and that's good. You can feel it. As a whole team, you can feel it. That's why our club house is more like a family room.
A.J. POLLOCK: I would agree with everything David said. He said communication. He's as good as I've ever seen communication-wise. I think, yeah, David's right. He brings the energy. Also, I think he -- baseball is unpredictable. You have all sorts of things that go on. If he tells you something, it's always going to be what's going on. He's never going to tell you something and do something else. He's very confident in what he's doing. I think that's pretty important when you have all sorts of things going on, and this guy is as steady as you get, cool, calm, and collected. Yeah, he's awesome. We're really lucky to have him.
Q. What has it been like to be a close-up witness to what J.D. has done, and how important has he been to this team in the second half?
A.J. POLLOCK: I've never seen anything like what he's done the last month. Yeah, we kind of keep looking, where would our team be without J.D. right now? Such a great teammate. He's just a great teammate that does a really good job and comes to the ballpark with an idea and hits homers. We'll take homers all day.
DAVID PERALTA: That's what it's all about. It's unbelievable the way he prepares himself to play the game in the way he does. It's something that you have to like, I don't know, that he can really do that. It's just him. We're really happy he's on our side and he's here to help us. Unbelievable. I'm glad he's on our side.
Q. You guys have both had relative success against Jon Gray. Can you tell me about your approach going up against him?
A.J. POLLOCK: Yeah, he's a good pitcher. He's got really, really good stuff. I think he's really come on the last couple years, too. He's gotten better and better. He's got an upper 90s fastball with a really good slider. It's tough. It's never going to be an easy at bat against him. I think, when you have a good pitcher like that, you've really got to -- it's a team effort. You've got to make him uncomfortable. You can't do that with one guy. You've got to have the whole team put on good at bats and make good pitches the whole game.
If you do that, the good pitchers will make a couple of mistakes. They won't make many, but they'll make a couple of mistakes. I think that's the idea against him. He's just a really good pitcher. (Speaking Spanish)
Q. With a guy like Gray, you swing at the first good pitch you see. He's going to be in the zone and make you do things. Do you swing at that, or do you battle with him and try to rack up the pitch count?
DAVID PERALTA: I think it depends how the game is going. You're looking for him to make a mistake. If he makes a mistake, you have to be ready for it. You have to have a good game plan against him. He's a good pitcher, but we have to work as a team. This is the one game we have to like win or lose, and we're not looking to lose. We're looking to win. So we have to work as a team. If we're going to win the Game 1-0, this is all we need, one run. We're just looking for a mistake. We have to be ready and have a good game plan.
Q. To both of you, given what we've seen has happened in Vegas, do you guys have any security concerns at all relative to the game?
A.J. POLLOCK: No, it's really unfortunate. Woke up to that, and it's pretty awful. We're out there playing the game. We're doing our best. That's where our mind is. We've got some great workers here at Chase Field. We've got bomb squad dogs, all sorts of security. I'm sure they're going to do everything they can. That's what I think is going to happen.