Braves postgame quotes after Wednesday’s win

CHRIS JOHNSON

On his feeling after they walked Freeman:

“It’s obviously not personal, it’s Freddie Freeman hitting in front of me and there’s a base open with a righty on the mound. But yeah any time somebody gets walked in front of your on purpose for them to try to pitch to you instead, you want to try to come up big and that’s what I did.”

On the battle he had:

“All my at-bats were a battle tonight. Masterson was awesome. And those are my at-bats, really, if I get down to two strikes, I try to grind it out as best possible, stay on the ball and put something hard in play and it went through.”

On just takes one with 0-for-4 before:

“I’ve actually had a couple of those this year, going 0-for and then coming up late in the game and trying to get a hit so, but it wasn’t about me, it was about just trying to get that run across and get us another victory.”

On try to put chip on shoulder after walk to Freeman:

“Yeah absolutely, you go up there thinking, all right you want me? You got me. But like I said it’s all part of the game, and I think no matter who was hitting back there, unless it was Miguel Cabrera or somebody like that, they’re probably going to walk Freddie and get to the righty.”

On job Schafer is doing leading off:

“He’s amazing. With J Hey going down, it’s such a big blow for our team, because we know what J Hey brings to the table. Schafer is doing an amazing job. He’s swinging the bat really well. And I’ve played with him for a while and this is the best I’ve seen him swing the bat in a long time. He’s playing the game hard, stealing bags, making great plays on defense, he’s doing a tremendous job. He starts at the top.”

On if aggravated his toe:

“No, it was a little tight in the beginning of the game but once it gets going it’s all right. Just got to adjust and make sure I get it loose earlier.”

PAUL MAHOLM

On his outing:

“I was as close to the normal consistent mechanics as I’ve had in a couple months, and obviously I had a few baserunners but I think most of the hits besides the home run was, they took their singles up the middle or whatnot, I made some big pitches and guys made some plays behind me.”

On changing speeds:

“Over the last whatever, I got into some bad habits with my mechanics and whenever you’re fighting your mechanics, it’s kind of tough to do those things. To be confident and tonight I mixed speeds anywhere from 59 to a couple mid-60s and I threw my curveball to 76. And then my fastball was back to where it normally is and my change-up was good, except for the one time I got it in there. Today was the first time in a while it’s felt good pretty much the whole time.”

On if a continuation through first four innigns in St. Louis:

“The other day it was good to get back out there and make some pitches, I would have liked to clean up the three doubles. I looked at video of that start compared to the first month of the season when I was a lot more consistent in my delivery and just tried to get back as close as possible to that. I wish I could have gone a little deeper tonight but the bullpen we’ve got they’re going to take care of you and my spot was coming up. I guess my prowess for hitting isn’t quite what it should be. But I felt way closer to what I was earlier in the year and that’s my goal for the whole month of September is to get back to there and for them to have confidence in me going forward. We’ve got a great staff and every one of us want to be a part of the playoff thing. We’ve got to continue to win games and push each other and see how it shakes out.”

On his walk vs. Masterson:

“I had the biggest AB of the night. But no, lucky. Obviously he’s a good pitcher, I was looking for one pitch in one spot. I thought I swung at ball four 3-1 and he said it was a strike. I said that makes me feel a little bit better. Obviously ball 4 was way up and away so it wasn’t a pitch to swing at.”

DAN UGGLA

On if anxious in first at-bat:

“Of course, yeah. Course I would have liked to have made contact or something like that, but it’s kind of like those opening day jitters and whatever. Like I said, I felt good, happy to be back, looking forward to tomorrow.”

On how big a difference there is for him, if he notices it:

“A little bit. Facing Masterson tonight didn’t really help any. He’s tough to pick up anyways. It’s still baseball. This game is still hard. I’m still going to have bad games. I’m going to have good games. But the bottom line is I’m in a consistent place now and I’m just happy where I’m at.”

FREDI GONZALEZ

On Chris Johnson’s ninth inning battle:

“He gives you good at-bats. And that was a tough guy to get a good at-bat from, guy throwing from below three-quarters, tough on right-handers and I thought it was a hell of an at-bat the whole time. He just happened to punch one through there. Schafer had a great game, stole a couple bases, got us in scoring position. I don’t know how many guys other than him on our club that can score there because that ball was hit pretty hard. Maybe B.J. But nevertheless it was nice to win that in nine innings and not get into our bullpen.”

On Schafer’s speed difference-maker tonight:

“No question. He has that type of ability. He can make a difference offensively, bunt, steal a base, score from second on a hard hit ball or even defensively. We’ve seen him make plays in the outfield. His speed catches up.”

On Maholm’s outing:

“Great outing, changed speeds, and we turned a couple dboule play balls behind him. Simmons does something special almost every single night. When you’re throwing the ball over the plate, you’re throwing strikes, good things happen defensively.”

On a pick-your-poison spot in the lineup in the ninth:

“Exactly and I would have done the same thing. You’ve got Freddie Freeman hitting third against the submariner or you’ve got the right-hander behind him Chris Johnson, even though he’s what second or third in the league in hitting you’ve got to pick him. I think I would have done the same thing.”

On good to see Uggla beat out the infield hit:

“Yeah and you know what, those guys both got two hits and both walked twice, it’s good. Little by little, we take baby steps.”

On McCann throwing down to get Cabrera off first base:

“We’ve got a first and third situation I don’t know if that was designed or that was somebody missed a sign but they were trying to steal a run there in that situation and we gave the ball to the right guy, Simmons, who did a terrific job running him down. In those situations you don’t want to make too many throws. And you want the ball in the hand of the right guy and Simmons is the right guy in that situation and he didn’t have to make that throw to home plate. He got the guy out at first base.”

On if Avilan dealing with fatigue recently:

“No I thought we’ve been taking care of him pretty good. It’s hard, one-run game in the big leagues in the eighth inning to try to stop it all the time. I’ll take my chances with him always.”

On more of a load for him without Walden:

“Yeah but he’s done it before and he does a terrific job. And hopefully Walden, I know he’s a lot better today than he was yesterday and hopefully he keeps progressing that way.”

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