Oct. 31 Ned Yost postgame interview
Q. During the year Wade did not have a multi-inning save for you guys, and something you go to a lot in the postseason. I'm curious how you make that transition, and how significant it is to do it?
NED YOST: It depends on his rest. He was the most rested guy we had down there today. We knew if we had a lead in the eighth inning, unless it was multiple-run lead, a three- or four- or five-run lead we were going to go to Wade in that situation. We had Herrera left. We felt all along if we could hold the score at one or two, we could find a way to tie the ballgame up and eventually take the lead, at least that was the hope anyway.
So we pinch-hit for CY after the fourth inning, and then ran our guys out to try to hold the fort there. And everybody did, except for Duff; Conforto ended up hitting a home run off of him. Besides that everybody was great.
It just got to that spot where we just felt it gave us the opportunity to win. It was a big game for us to win. To take a 3-1 lead was huge.
Q. Escobar is on 14-game hit streak. Zobrist just hit his eighth double, how important have their contributions been for you guys?
NED YOST: Huge. We're getting a lot of action at the top of the order. We had a lot of tough decisions to make in this game, and one of them was in the fourth inning: Do we pinch-hit Kendrys Morales, with a runner on first base and two outs? And the reason we ended up doing that, is we just scored a run. We wanted to extend the inning if we could. Hopefully he could step up and hit a home run, which he's done more than anyone else in our lineup. But to keep the inning extended for Escobar and Zobrist, who have been the hot hitters to try and get us a lead at that point.
It's key for guys like Lorenzo Cain, who got big hits tonight, Hos, who has been clutch for us with runners in scoring position. It's big.
Q. Could you just talk about the way this game turned out, the way you come back. You're four outs away from losing. You turn it around, you put together the walks, the hits, the errors, just the resiliency about the team, what it says about the team and what it does for this squad?
NED YOST: That's just what our team does. We feel like if we can keep the game close, we're going to find a way to win it. Our bullpen is so dynamic, they give us a chance to win those type of games. And it's a team that just looks for a little crack. If we find a little crack, they're going to make something happen. It's amazing how they do that. And they do that in a number of ways.
But the most important thing is they put the ball in play. They make things happen by putting the ball in play, and it's just a phenomenal group.
Q. With the way they did it tonight, what it means for this team, the position of this team?
NED YOST: What they did tonight, is what they've been doing the whole playoffs. It's a group of guys that have the utmost confidence in themselves. I don't think at any point these guys thought that they were going to lose tonight. That's just their mindset. That's just the way that they play the game. They're going to go out and they're going to find a way to win.
Q. How do you explain that knack for taking that one inch and then afterward making a giant gap out of it?
NED YOST: I don't know, it's experience. It's character. It's a group of really, really talented players. But a lot of it I think is a mindset. We're in the biggest stage that you can play in front of and these guys are totally confident in their abilities. They're as cool as cucumbers. They never panic because they've been through it before and they know that they're capable of doing it again. And it's just something that they believe in their heart that they can accomplish.
And like I said, it's fun to sit there and be the manager of that group. If you handle the pitching right and keep the score here, these guys are going to find a way to come back and score some runs and win this ballgame.
Q. With Rios, what happened on Granderson's fly?
NED YOST: I didn't talk to him, but I think he probably forget how many outs there were.
Q. Should that not happen at this level?
NED YOST: What do you think? (Laughter).
Q. Even though Wade hasn't done these two-inning stints very often, when you have the lead you give him the ball. How good a feeling is that knowing that role he's on for the last two years he's going to get those outs?
NED YOST: I think he's probably one of the top dominant relievers in all of baseball. Anytime we give him the ball it's just, like, okay, sit back, Wade's in control.
So once we got that lead in the eighth inning, we knew what we were going to do. We were going to go straight to Wade and let him close the game out. This time of year it's easier to do what we did tonight, do a six-out save. We did it in Houston and he went through it flawlessly. During the year it's a little bit harder to do because you don't have all these breaks.
And you have to get in the mindset, at least I do, anyway, because I'm really, really focused on my pitchers and their usage, and I just always remind myself, Win this game tonight, worry about tomorrow, tomorrow. Don't worry about anything. Wade is going two today, and don't worry about tomorrow. Win this today, and tomorrow will take care of tomorrow. I fully expect Wade to be okay for tomorrow, to.
Q. The Rios play, were you surprised at the challenge ruling? Because it seemed like Flores left the bag early.
NED YOST: It didn't really surprise me, because when we called -- we've got Billy Duplissea and Mark Topping, two of the best replay analyst guys there, and they said, "Look, he left early, but it's going to be really, really close. I don't know if we'll get the call or not, but let's give it a shot." So going into it we knew that it was going to be really, really close. And I still haven't seen the replay.
Q. Did you get a chance to talk to Volquez? How did that go?
NED YOST: I did: He's doing fine. And you'll get a chance to see him here in a little bit. He's excited to be back. He's excited for the opportunity tomorrow and ready to go.
Q. Did you guys talk at all about how that whole thing was handled? Did you have a chance to ask if he was okay?
NED YOST: No, I think we handled it exactly the way his family wanted it handled.
Q. Knowing how close you guys were last year to finishing off everything, and once again being this close this year, how important is it for you guys to put the series away tomorrow?
NED YOST: Again, when you win the first two games at home, going into it your goal coming in here is winning two games here. But you know if you win one here, you've got two games at home, where we're really, really tough. It's going to be important, but it's not going to be the end of the world if we don't. But I think everybody's going to come to the park tomorrow ready to go.