Braves quotes after Tuesday’s 3-2 loss to Pirates


On Alex Wood

“I thought he was terrific. Another solid performance, 6 2/3 innings, three runs—I don’t think you can ask for anything more than that. It was a good performance. He gave us a good chance to win the game. Solo home run there by (Travis) Snyder tied it. These guys (the Pirates) stick their nose in there offensively and they don’t give at-bats away and they put the ball in play and they get results.”

On if felt like lead could have been more than 2-0 if not for some missed chances early

“We had the bases loaded in the second inning. Double play killed that rally and then (Wood) came up. We had, what, three double plays turned against us. We had some people on base we just couldn’t put a crooked number up.”

What would you have liked to see different on Starling Marte steal in fourth inning? (when Bethancourt's errant throw allowed McCutchen to score)

“Just a better throw. He came up checking and just kind of didn’t reset and use his arm and the ball sailed on him.”

On Freddie Freeman thrown out trying to take third on throw to home…

“Play at the plate with a possible run, trying to get the extra base and we get thrown out. I’m OK with that stuff, when you are not scoring runs and you are trying to be aggressive on the base paths. I really am.”

Andrew McCutchen look like an MVP?

“He’s their engine, him and (Josh) Harrison. Those guys get on base and create some stuff for some of the other guys. They are two good players.”

On Gerrit Cole

“He was pretty good. He was really good. You don’t take any credit from him. We had him with the bases loaded and he only gave up one.”

Jason Heyward (thumb) got through game OK?

“Yeah, I think so. He never complained about anything through the course of the game. He had a couple good at-bats.”


On how he felt

“I felt all right. I thought I made some good pitches when I had to and also some bad ones when I had to, too. You have to tip your hat to Gerrit Cole. He gave up two runs early, he beared down and threw a pretty good game after that.”

Nice to see Braves score a couple runs early?

“For sure. Any time we score early, no matter what the situation, it is always nice. You’d like to be able to bear down a little bit more than I did. I made a couple of mistakes. The one to Snider, you can’t miss big. Up here, you’ve got to miss small and that was a really big miss to Snider and he made me pay for it. After that, there’s really not much you can do: a 3-2 changeup to McCutchen broken bat blooper down the line and then (Starling) Marte golfed into left-center. That’s baseball. Good hitters get those knocks sometimes. After that pitch to Snider there is not much for me to be angry about.”

Was there any extra motivation to prevent Pirates from celebrating clinch of wild card at Turner Field?

“I like to think I stay pretty even-keeled in terms of motivation or whatever you want to call it. I kind of have the same mindset every night and that’s to help us win the ballgame.”

On if he has to stay even-keeled and not get frustrated as offense struggles

“It’s one of those things, my opinion—especially for pitchers bullpen or starters—your mindset should never change. Your motivation should never change. Every fifth day as a starter, you should have the same mindset to go out there and give your team the best chance you can to win ballgames, put up zeroes and compete. After that you can’t control anything. You should never be too high or too low. It’s one of those things where you go out there and pitch your butt off every day. It’s what you get paid to do. If you can’t do it, somebody else sure as heck will. I don’t think you can look at anything else. The only person you can hold accountable is yourself. I feel like you’ve got to go about it is take care of what you can take care of and compete. No matter if you are 1-161 or you’ve won every game you should have the same mindset every time you step on that field.”


On Pirates

“They’re a good team. They deserve to be in the playoffs. They’re better than we are.”

On Gerrit Cole, who is 8-1 in past two Septembers

“He’s good. He’s really good. There’s a reason they drafted him so high. They didn’t miss on him. He’s a bulldog out there, man. He goes right after you. He doesn’t give in, doesn’t care who’s in the box – he’s a good pitcher.”

On Cole not giving up anything after the two early runs

“He settled in pretty good. He didn’t miss many spots. He didn’t give in at all, and kind of took over the game after the second inning.”

Could Braves maybe benefit more or learn more from awful finish like this than if had just sort of sputtered at end and not missed playoffs by much?

“Yeah. It stinks. We have a lot of guys in here who don’t want to feel like this again. So hopefully in the offseason guys will work hard and come back in and try to make it so we’re out there celebrating, not everybody else.”

Can you still derive some motivation from at least trying to finish at .500?

“Right now we’re just trying to win one game. Rather than get to .500. I’d like to win tomorrow. If we get to .500, that’s fine, whatever. But I’d like to win tomorrow. That’d be nice.”