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October 23, 2015

Ned Yost

Kansas City, Missouri - Pregame six

Q. Last time Yordano pitched in Game 6 you said you had a special feeling, guaranteed to win. Do you have similar feelings?
NED YOST: I can't guarantee he's going to win, but I felt good about him coming out and performing. I feel the same way tonight.

Q. How important was the experience you gained in Milwaukee to the success you've had here in KC?
NED YOST: It was huge. It was a big experience. It was great to go through that time there and then get back and reflect on things that happened there. And I think it made me a better manager in the long run.

Q. Most of the people that were here last year are the same players this year. Could you talk about one of the new guys this year, his contributions, with Morales?
NED YOST: Well, he's been a great addition to our team. He's been the middle-of-the-order bat from the first day on until the last day. He put up tremendous numbers, power numbers, RBI numbers, he's been great from both sides of the plate.

Q. If you would, talk about the series so far. It's really been a battle between both teams. Take us through game by game how it's been for you.
NED YOST: We knew coming in this was going to be a very, very tough series. Just like we felt like Houston was going to be an extremely tough series; they matched up well against us with their youth and their speed and their defensive abilities and their athleticism. And we knew coming in that these guys had great pitching and they had tremendous power offensively as a group, all the way up and down, for the most part, of their lineup.

We knew it was going to be a very tough series for both teams. And it's proven to be that so far.

Q. I think opposing hitters have a .900 OPS against Yordano this October. How would you evaluate what you've seen from him?
NED YOST: I think he's thrown the ball okay. The key for me for Yordano is if he's commanding his breaking ball. If he's commanding his breaking ball he's going to be extremely tough tonight.

The secondary pitches are important. He's got the great fastball. He's got decent enough fastball command. But what makes it all work is commanding his curveball and commanding his changeup. And if he's able to work the throttle with those two pitches, then that makes that fastball even more effective.

Q. Has that been a little shaky?
NED YOST: Yeah, a little bit. On the starts this year that he's really, really thrown well, it's because he's really had a good feel for his breaking ball. If he has a good feel for his breaking ball he's going to be in great shape. It's hard to hit a 98-mile-an-hour fastball when you've got that curveball coming in after it.

Q. Sort of related to Milwaukee. How much do you think you benefited from not managing right again away and having some time in between? Was it better for you that way?
NED YOST: I had job offers, but I also had a year left on my contract and I thought it would serve me better just to sit back and take a year off and figure out what I could do better as a manager when the opportunity came again.

Q. Given a few days to think about it, when things turned around against Price in his previous start, why did that happen?
NED YOST: Well, I don't know. You know, it was real tough to see the first six innings of that ballgame. 3:00 games here with the sunshine are really, really tough for everybody, not just us, both teams. In the seventh inning, I don't know if we just saw the ball better or what. He got to a point where he started to leave a couple of pitches up, I don't really know. It was just an inning where we put some hits together and got some runs.

Q. Is this your favorite bench that you've ever had for a Postseason like this, and have you learned anything about constructing a roster and having the right pieces on the bench?
NED YOST: We haven't really used the bench much. I think we used the bench a lot more last year in terms of our speed and stuff. We haven't really gotten into a position where we needed to pinch-run late or defend late. We used Paulo Orlando in right field to defend late and the other day we got a chance to get Dyson and Butera in the game because the score was wrapped up so big.

We've got pieces that we need to be successful and fit our club with the speed we have in Dyson and Gore, and the athletic ability of Paulo Orlando, who is a tremendous outfielder, can play all three positions. And Christian Colon and Drew Butera, you don't really lose much behind the plate with him. I think it's a good bench.

Q. In each of the big rallies that you've had in Game 4 of the previous series and Game 2 of this series, you've done it basically with the base hit. You think your guys have changed their approach, well behind in those games, because they knew at that point baserunners were just as important as going deep? Do you think they've gotten swing happy against power teams in this Postseason?
NED YOST: No. I think that we've never had -- unlike Toronto -- Toronto uses home runs as their weapon; we don't. We're not that team that lives and dies with the power. We put the ball in play and we try to make things happen.

And I don't think we've changed our approach. We bunch together some hits and it looks really, really nice. And we've won some games because of it. That's the type of offensive team we have.

Can we hit homers? Yeah. We don't try to hit them. We just try to put good swings on the ball and drive the gaps.

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