Q. Torey, what are the emotions one day out, and will you be able to sleep tonight?TOREY LOVULLO: You know, I've been sleeping really good up until this point. I had a great night's rest last night. I feel the emotion just like everybody else does. I'm excited. There's something
Q. Torey, what are the emotions one day out, and will you be able to sleep tonight?
TOREY LOVULLO: You know, I've been sleeping really good up until this point. I had a great night's rest last night. I feel the emotion just like everybody else does. I'm excited. There's something special about October baseball. You know, you don't need to create energy, it's manufactured because of this time of the year.
I'm trying to use that energy in the right way. I know that it's a normal feeling. I'll talk to the guys again who are probably feeling the same thing and let them know everything they're experiencing is all normal, and to make sure that they get up tomorrow, follow their routine, and get ready for probably one of the most important games of their lives.
Q. How close are you guys to finalizing the roster and to setting your lineup for tomorrow?
TOREY LOVULLO: We have another workout today. We're getting really close. We've been drilling down to it, and 95% of it is known. There are a few other scenarios we want to walk through to make sure that we're correct. We do everything here with a strategy. And on top of that we want to see a couple guys have a good workday today and make sure they're healthy. Once we know that, we can start to finalize it, and move full steam ahead and get that done. We want to get that done. We want to make sure that we tell the players so they know by tomorrow, by tonight, tonight, so they can rest and make sure they're ready to go.
Q. Have you decided on a catcher for Zack tomorrow?
TOREY LOVULLO: I have not. I have not. So, once again, I know Jeff caught back-to-back days and that was part of the criteria that we had set up. So right now at this point we're going to see how his workday goes. He had a great workday yesterday. Was feeling good again, and we want to get as much time as possible before we find out about how he feels. Once I get all that information, I'll make sure I let the guys know.
The way I do it is I'm going to tell them first, and I haven't told anybody, so I'm not ready to say anything for a few reasons. But I'll do that as soon as I possibly can after the workout today.
Q. Is the results of this game going to center on how both teams control the middle of the lineups of the other team?
TOREY LOVULLO: I wish I could predict that. We respect the entire lineup of the Colorado Rockies on a pretty immense level. They can strike quick. They're a lot like our lineup. So to say that you shut down, you know, Blackmon, LeMahieu, and Arenado and their team's going to be done is a tremendous understatement. They're a complete lineup. So we're preparing that way. We want to make sure that our guys are not overlooking anybody in that lineup. We want to attack them the same way we have all year long and see where that lands us.
Q. How about your lineup?
TOREY LOVULLO: Our lineup, you know, look, I look at our lineup, and I feel like they strike fast. They strike in a big way. I know that we can put up a crooked number with the best teams, and we're going to continue that. We're going to continue that feeling. I believe in this lineup, and it's structured in a way that it creates balance, and I know our guys are very eager to get out there and do their thing tomorrow.
Q. So in terms of the lineup tomorrow, the question -- their catcher is Marte and Peralta, are those questions as well?
TOREY LOVULLO: I think so. I think they're legitimate questions. They both had really good workdays yesterday, but we might ramp them up a little bit. They just came out to test their own boundaries, but we might ask them to do a little bit more. So under our guidelines they need to fall under a few things, which if they pass that test, which I think they will, it's trending in that direction, and I think we'll be in good shape to say they're ready to go.
Q. Where do Owings and Sherfy fall at the moment?
TOREY LOVULLO: Yeah, thank you for that. I know a few people were out there yesterday watching Jimmy throw his aggressive bullpen to some hitters. Everything felt and looked very normal. And some of the comments that he made to me following that were very encouraging. But we want to see how he feels today with the throwing program before we announce anything else.
So, once again, that's part of the decision making process that we're walking through for this roster. In C.O.'s case, he's going to come out and take BP today, and I'll probably have a discussion with him and the front office to see where he is at in this process. But he is a long shot, and I want to say that anything's possible. I know today's the last day. So we'll see what happens.
Q. Back on the road map to get here, what do you feel like had to go your way to get this team into the postseason? And when did you start talking about the postseason with the team?
TOREY LOVULLO: Probably not until the last week of the season did I start to address things and talk about it openly with them. I talked about a few things during the course of the year that were just general comments about maybe punching a ticket to the postseason, and just letting them know it was on my mind and those are my expectations. But I didn't draw up any in-depth conversation about what my expectations were about getting to the postseason. Really, we focused on the day today. That's been our motto. We believe in that, and at the end of the day we see where that lands us tomorrow, and it put us in a pretty good place.
Once we did hit the postseason, I started to address things a little bit differently and turn the corner with my own thoughts and let them know what my expectations were. I wanted to make sure they knew I was going to play guys, and we weren't resting guys. We were full steam ahead, and we were going to keep teaching and keep playing and doing the same things every single day.
But this has been a road map that's been new to me. As a first year manager, I didn't really know what to do as far as taking time off or resting. I've been grinding and just going hard every single day, and I think the players picked up on that because they've been doing the same thing.
Q. Following up on Marte, what has he meant to this club? Has he met or exceeded expectations for you guys?
TOREY LOVULLO: Well, we traded a really good second baseman in Jean Segura for two key pieces to this puzzle. We knew he had a proven track record of being able to go out with tremendous talent and play the game at a high level. Last year, I think, was probably a down year for him. When we obtained him, we were really excited about the potential. We sent him back to player development to shore up a few parts of his game, which he did. And he deserves so much credit for playing a year and a half in the big league level and then finding himself in the Minor Leagues and not letting that affect him. That's hard to do.
He went down and earned his way back here as a more-complete player. So without him, we had two shortstops go down during the course of the year that would have devastated other organizations, but because our front office built depth and Marte stepped in there, that was a saving moment for our season.
Q. You talked about this game and 90 feet mattering, every pitch mattering. When you have someone like Dave McKay on your staff, what kind of weapon can he be and how does that factor into your game plan?
TOREY LOVULLO: Well, I'll say it, and I'm on the record for saying it, probably one of the best coaches, maybe thee best coach that I've ever been around from the standpoint of being a great teammate, from the standpoint of being a great teacher in creating a buy-in, and then from the standpoint of being prepared every single day. I don't know if I've ever seen a more prepared coach every single day. And he's fearless. He's fearless in what he wants to do and what he believes in. When I sign off on something, he's all in. He'll come to me with some thoughts and he presents the case, and I say yes or no. Once I sign off on it, he's relentless.
You can see what he's done for this organization as far as base running. We steal bases on a very impressive level. They're not just outrun the ball, like Wills and Lou Brock, these are study stolen bases. You can see what happened with DJ LeMahieu and the super overshift. He saw that, he presented it to me, and I think it worked out in a few cases. So a great coach that we're lucky to have here.
Q. How would you perceive the success of this team and the impact that it's had on the community here? Especially toward the end of the season as it kind of looked more toward postseason?
TOREY LOVULLO: Yeah, well, listen, I've been saying we're Arizona proud. We love the fact that we represent the state of Arizona. We are excited about knowing this is a sellout tomorrow. We want to go out and perform and make this city proud of us and make this state proud of us.
It's something we talked about in the clubhouse. A couple guys were wondering why the fans weren't here early in the season and when they would start showing up. And I told them you keep playing the same type of baseball that you're playing, they're going to come out and support us. So we want to earn that. We know that they're out there, and I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings as far as the crowd, the noise, and the energy.
Q. One of the guys on this year's pitching staff were on last year's pitching staff that didn't have great results. Can you talk about kind of what the process was from when you came in and started scouting everybody to the point this season where you realized, hey, we've got a pretty good staff?
TOREY LOVULLO: I felt strongly that we had a tremendous nucleus of players that included position players. I felt like you run through the names of Zack Greinke who is arguably one of the best pitchers in baseball for the past five years. Shelby Miller who might have been rookie of the year or was in consideration, and won several games. Patrick Corbin who was an All-Star, Taijuan Walker, Archie Bradley, Robbie Ray. These are guys that had different levels of success. And we felt like there was a strong enough nucleus to build around.
We were going to present new thoughts to them about how to attack, and study, and pay attention to different things and having the catcher buy in. And we felt like the combination of the guys that we had, that had success, if we could give them a little extra twist and extra turn on how to attack hitters, that they might do something really special.
I think probably by mid May, there was buy-in for the program that we have here. And it's not a secret. Everybody's doing this. Everybody's studying and paying attention at behind-the-scenes levels that are pretty impressive. But it was the buy-in that was pretty impressive, because these guys did it, and they saw the success, and it's translated and gotten us to this point today.
Q. I was talking to A.J., and he said on day one of spring training you came in and preached a certain message, and you walk that walk and you're still living that message today. I want your reaction to that. Also, if you had a T-shirt, what would it say on it?
TOREY LOVULLO: Let me talk, because I start talking and I start thinking, so I'll give you my thought about the T-shirt. I just wanted to come in here and let these guys know that I was genuine, real, sincere in what my expectations were every single day. And I wasn't going to come off that. I wanted to make sure that it was consistent, and either you were going to align with me or we were going to have a tough time. These guys made it so easy for me to be myself. For me to show my beliefs and they bought into it. They've had a tremendous season. They've earned everything that I've asked them to earn, and that was the message that I had early on. To go out and earn things every single day.
So the T-shirt, I would probably have to say along the lines of Win the Inch, would be let's group together and Win the Moment.