— quotes compiled by Matthew Bain and David O’Brien
Braves quotes from Julio Teheran, Kelly Johnson and Fredi Gonzalez after Friday’s 4-2 win against the Cubs.
On how he felt
“I felt really good, better than what I thought. Because those three days that we had, I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t easy to pitch in the first day after we got a four-day rest (for the break). But I felt really good. I don’t know what happened in the fifth inning. I wanted to stay in the game, but that’s something that I can’t control.”
Were you surprised when Fredi came out to get you in the fifth?
“Yeah. I’m not going to lie, I was surprised, because I was competing right there. That’s all I can do. When I got in trouble like I did in the first inning, I competed. Just one mistake that I made, and you know how this game is, you pay for it. I was really focused on this game, on what I was doing. I was surprised a little bit (to come out in fifth), but what can I do?”
On Detwiler coming through and you waiting to greet him in dugout
“Always. Those guys coming out of the bullpen, they just want to do their job, and they want to do their best. Every time, I support them.”
Was your slider particularly effective tonight?
“Yes, that’s something I’ve been working on, and it’s getting to where I want it to be.”
On Eury’s two-run single
“He got a big base hit right there, and that’s why we won the game. They’ve all been doing a great job. We’re just trying to stay the same and win some more games.”
** KELLY JOHNSON
On Eury Perez coming through in second chance with bases loaded
“Huge. That’s awesome. We need everybody to step up. We need anybody and everybody. To get in that situation with two outs and drive in two, it’s huge.”
Seems like you picked up right where you left off after that month on the DL earlier in the season
“I’m trying. It’s been a good year. Got off to a good start in the spring, just having Seitz get with me and working on approach, shortening my swing and things like that. And it’s paying off. Just trying to stick to that routine of getting ready and doing the things that we work on.”
On the relievers coming through
“They were great. And Julio didn’t have the long outing, didn’t qualify for a win or anything, but he never gave in. And I think that that’s important for him, because he’s going to have to pitch out of it without his best stuff. That’s important for pitchers.”
On lot of people chipping in to win first game after break, snapping give-game skid
“Just a win. Of course that (lot of contributions) is nice, but just winning the game is huge for us.”
And beating a good team
“Yeah, they are good. They’ve got a future. Couple of things that maybe they wish they could have done better, running the bases-wise. But it was a good game.”
On Johnson moving into closer role, bullpen shuffling again
“J.J. is more than capable of filling Grilli’s shoes. He’s done a great job all year. It gets a little bit overlooked because of how good Grilli did since he was closing, but J.J.’s been phenomenal too. It’s going to take guys like that. And picking up Jason Frasor is going to be a big one, too, because he’s got a ton of experience at the end of ballgames.”
Team still confident you can stay in this despite the five-game skid before break?
“Why not. It’s still within reach. Our division, nobody’s really pulling away. As we’ve seen in the past, it takes good stretches. You get hot when the teams in front of you don’t, you never know. There’s still so much baseball.”
** FREDI GONZALEZ
On how Eury Perez didn’t have to wait long to get a second crack with the bases loaded
“No he didn’t. He’s been swinging the bat well since he’s been up here. Big at-bat in that situation, and you feel good that he was going to put the ball in play. Obviously you didn’t know he was going to get two-out, game-winning RBIs in that situation….. But we pitched well. (Ross) Detwiler came in there in the fifth inning and got the big out there with (Anthony) Rizzo and the rest of the time we set up well. The rest of the bullpen guys did a nice job.”
On why he took Julio Teheran out in the fifth
“There’s nothing that I was watching that made me feel good about that at-bat right there (against Rizzo). It’s tough. Here’s your starter (not) going five innings, but 4 2/3 with (runners at) first and second and Rizzo at the plate — it was one of those situations where you’ve got to make a decision and it worked well for us.”
On if Teheran had his slider working tonight
“He did. In certain situations he really did. But again I think they had some good at-bats against him the whole game. What did he come out with, 91 pitches? To finish in five innings, that’s a lot of work. So it was a situation where Detwiler came in and did a nice job and got us a chance to keep them right there and we ended up winning the game.”
On A.J. Pierzynski not knowing how Ross Detwiler pitched
“And I told him the only time I’ve seen him pitch against us it’s 95 percent fastballs. When he was with Washington pitching against us. And I talked to him in the outfield a little bit today, both him and (Jason) Frasor. And I asked him, ‘Do you still throw fastballs 90 percent of the time?’ and he goes ‘Yeah. I just throw right down the middle. Here we go.’ And I think that’s what he did with Rizzo. He just threw fastballs, but he located and we made a nice play behind him.”
On the play of Kelly Johnson
“He’s been terrific. We feel comfortable. He plays left field, he can play third he can play first base. And he’s filled in, he’s done a nice job. Him and Chris Johnson platooning over there at first base. I don’t know exactly what their numbers are, but they’ve given nice production at first base. I’m thinking (Freddie) Freeman’s got to be out right almost a month. So it’s a nice piece to have that we didn’t expect to have come spring training. We knew what kind of character and what kind of person Kelly Johnson was but to come up with some big hits, it’s nice. Good for us.”
On the little plays Johnson does
“He sure does. He’s a pro. He prepares well, he’s a pro. He’s a great clubhouse…good teammate. Good for him that he’s having a year like he’s having right now.”
On good day for him – news of contract extension and good win
“Well it was nice to get a win. I knew about the extension in Colorado, but you can’t celebrate because it was on double-secret probation and we lose a lot of games there. But it’s nice to make it public for our coaching staff and to go out and get a win like this is really, really nice for us.”
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