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October 21, 2015

John Gibbons

Toronto, Ontario - Postgame five

Blue Jays - 7 Royals - 1

Q. That's twice Estrada has done that for you with your back against the wall. Where is that coming from, did you see this?
JOHN GIBBONS: He's pitched like that all year. We've seen him take a couple of no-hitters late in the games, very durable. He gives up minimal hits, that kind of thing.

The fact that it's an elimination game, he really rose to the occasion. But he's looking pretty good, he's a free agent, the timing is important for him. He had everything going, he's sticking that fastball, nice little curveball, and his overpowering change-up. He shut down a good hitting, hot team.

Q. After giving up a pile of runs the last few days, can you put into perspective the scene, the backdrop and what it means for Estrada to do what he did?
JOHN GIBBONS: Well, yeah, I mean, everybody is aware that you lose, you're on your way home. And it's been a tremendous season for us. If it was to end abruptly, you feel a little sour.

But really, he's a guy we've really leaned on all year. Of course, the games throughout the year didn't go like this one was, but he's a guy who really carried us in a lot of ways. But he's a master at what he does. It doesn't always look pretty, but he's mastered it.

Q. How close was Price to coming into this game?
JOHN GIBBONS: Well, he wasn't far off. They got a couple of guys on him, got to Hosmer. We got him going, that was a shot. Hosmer has hit Marco a little bit. Got my attention, was it the sixth inning, gave up a couple long fly balls. That's what you look for out of Marco, because he's a fly ball guy. When they get him, it's usually home runs. That got my attention a little bit.

Then he bounced back after that with a couple of strong innings to get later into the game. That really worked out perfectly the fact that we didn't need David tonight so he could throw Friday.

Really, the way our pitching staff or bullpen was lined up today for what we had, it couldn't happen any better. My biggest concern early in the game, you knew he was on, giving up one hit, was this going to be -- the big question, is the ninth inning a 1-0 game, what are you going to do? That's not a good feeling.

Q. The big hits are obvious, but the walks to Bautista and Encarnacion in that inning must have been huge. What about the emotion of the dugout as things were progressing, long at-bats, especially Bautista? Can you describe what was going on there.
JOHN GIBBONS: Yeah, those guys were locked in and they were enjoying that. Really, you go back to the first game of the series, Volquez, in his sixth inning he walked the first two guys and then turned it up and punched a couple of guys out and got out in his final inning.

Very similar today, except we were able to get to him. And you look back, we've been talking about Tulo, his big home runs, and really last-ditch game type games, then the same thing tonight, the bases-clearing double.

There's a lot of good things happened. It really doesn't surprise me. But No. 5 is our magic number; we get to that we do okay.

Q. Who is going to be your starter in Game 6?
JOHN GIBBONS: It will be Price.

Q. There had to be some relief for your hitters, too, especially getting the early run off Volquez after the shutout. Then to get big hits off the tough KC bullpen.
JOHN GIBBONS: Yeah, probably the toughest in the Big Leagues, that group out there. We had Colabello got us on the board. Colabello had a home run off him earlier in the year, and that's no easy feat. It was definitely a breaking ball tonight.

Chris is a good hitter, and we definitely needed that. Especially in a game like this, you score first, even though it was not a lot of runs, you can breathe a little easier, you're not scrambling. And usually a lot of times the team that scores first ends up okay.

Q. What was the difference between Marco tonight and the Marco we saw earlier in the series?
JOHN GIBBONS: He's got pinpoint control. That's a big part of his success and I thought he was sticking his fastball much better tonight, although he was pretty good the other night. He really gave us a chance to win that night, we just couldn't solve Volquez.

But tonight was his night. Everything he threw up there, you know, was right where he wanted it. And of course, Navey did a great job with him again.

Q. You guys are known as being a home run hitting team. But the plate discipline has really been there for you all year, too. How impressed are you that approach has stuck around when your guys' backs are against the wall in an elimination game?
JOHN GIBBONS: We didn't panic, that's for sure. And that's what we do. And that's what makes our offense so good, really. Guys take their walks, and it sets things up for other guys. Take their walks, but they're still free swingers, so in a lot of ways it's an odd combo. Yeah, that's big. They were all nice and relaxed, very focused.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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