Q. I want to take you back to Game 2 of the NLDS, your victory over Robbie Ray, a pitcher who has had dominance against you. Do you feel unlocking the code, as you put it, has helped you during this playoff run?
DAVE ROBERTS: I think so. He obviously had a lot of success against us. So to have a plan going in against him to swing at strikes and take balls. I think that was the best we’ve done obviously at that point against him.
But, yeah, I think that carrying that plan to the next — to the games following throughout the postseason, we’ve done a very good job. And you look back at the pitchers that we’ve outlasted, and looking back to the CS and Jon Lester threw a great game against us, but just went five innings. And so that was a win to be able to get into their bullpen.
So I thought Dallas last night threw the ball really well. It was efficient. But I still thought our approach, plan, was good. And you need that when you’re facing ones and twos. And we’ve got our hands full tonight. If we can go out there and execute our plan, then I think it gives us a good chance.
Q. Expanding on that a little bit, obviously you guys have tried to practice patience when you’re facing pitchers like this. When you are facing Verlander, who has a longer leash, how does that change the way you might approach it?
DAVE ROBERTS: Yeah, I think with a guy with his stuff, and when he gets up with two strikes he has the ability to really kind of put you away. So the idea of waiting him out doesn’t make sense. So he’s going to attack and I think that we have to sort of match that intensity and that idea, as well.
Q. Just the thought process on Joc over Andre in left.
DAVE ROBERTS: I think with Joc it’s more the velocity. I think that this guy is obviously plus, plus velocity. I like Joc a little bit better with the velocity. And I think Joc is a better defender in left field, too.
Q. Back to Joc a little bit more, what have you seen from him since he came back from the Minor Leagues? Has he made some adjustments?
DAVE ROBERTS: I think that he’s — obviously he kind of tweaks things a lot, he tinkers. But I think that in his batting practice and simulated games I think he’s in his legs a little bit more, more consistent mechanically. And so I think for us is it hasn’t really translated into production. And he hasn’t had those opportunities really, to be fair to him. But I think in this one case I think he’s going to put some at-bats together against him.
Q. Just talking to your guys about the approach at the plate, with a guy like Verlander, when you’re facing him, how much information do you want them to have ahead of time, and then kind of turn that off and they can just go out and cut it loose against him?
DAVE ROBERTS: I think that we’re very good at trying to disseminate what we want to get to these guys and what we don’t. But we’ve got very intelligent players that can handle information. So before they get into their work, we give it to them. There’s obviously video that guys are in tune with. But after that it’s kind of going out there and competing.
But I think that as much information as we can give these guys, to which they can handle, is a good thing. And it goes with having guys that can sort of retain it, can handle it, and we’ve got some intelligent players.