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October 7, 2016

Jeff Banister

Arlington, Texas - Pregame two

THE MODERATOR: We'll get started with Jeff Banister.

Q. This morning, anything noticeably different or anything stick out to you in that clubhouse?
JEFF BANISTER: Yeah, I'll just say how consistent they are, how they all showed up. (Laughter) look, this is kind of how we've been. If you've watched us all year long, this is -- we've had games like that. And they don't necessarily feel good. They never look good.

However, our guys continue to show up and amaze us all with their resilience and their grit and how they play. I'm confident that these guys are going to come out and give us a great effort.

Q. Darvish has so many different pitches that he can use. How many of those need to be on in a particular start for him to do well. And what do you look for him to do early in his start to know he's going to be on his game?
JEFF BANISTER: What I look for early is the command of the fastball and is he using his fastball. Because when he comes out with his A fastball -- the 95-, 96-mile-per-hour fastball that he feels good and he feels confident with how the ball's coming out of his hand.

And then the command, being able to work both sides of the plate. This is a guy who can sink it. He can run it. He can cut it and he can four-seam it at 98.

When he goes to the breaking ball early, that's kind of one of those, you know, eyebrow moments for me where how is he feeling. But, look, this is a guy that can pitch with his fastball or without his fastball.

He can use the secondary stuff as feature because that's how electric it is, and he can use the fastball as a feature. But it comes down to, for me, is he using it and where is the command at?

Q. When you're game planning a team like the Blue Jays that can -- is probably gets more pull happy than most teams and yesterday they start shooting balls the other way, does that force you guys to change your approach? Or would you rather say, all right, if you guys are going to go against your strengths we're going to make you go against your strengths and beat us going against your strengths?
JEFF BANISTER: That's a good question, because here's the deal: Inside of every game there are times where you need to recognize that they do have a different approach outside their norm. And then you make adjustments.

There was a situation yesterday I felt like that their guys had a solid approach and they were stubborn with it. And that's what makes really good hitters really good is that they can do that.

And it's up to the opponent to recognize that and make an adjustment. And how quickly you make an adjustment is important. I think that yesterday, in the sense that I really -- I feel like that Cole tried to make an adjustment, it's just the feel for the arm-side fastball, it was a challenge for him, and the changeup became a little bit of a challenge for him.

So he was kind of relegated to one side of the plate. And it got elevated.

Q. Just your thoughts on going to Mazara instead of Choo today.
JEFF BANISTER: That's kind of been our plan all along. We profiled certain matchups, how we look at them, hitter/pitcher matchups. It's not always just the numbers. It's the swing profile, pitch profile. And one of the things -- it didn't necessarily -- doesn't always work out -- baseball, I mean it's one of those things that we like to analyze and really come up with creative thoughts.

But Choo, we felt like, profiled better against Estrada. And just Happ and Mazara, we like the matchup.

Q. You guys have used this never-ever quit mantra for so long now. After a game like that do you preach that any more to your team? Do you utilize that in any way other way? Can you use that any more so than normal after a game like that?
JEFF BANISTER: Like I alluded to earlier, that, listen, if I'm going to do something outside what I normally do, I would categorize myself as being reactionary.

When you're reactionary, you're emotional. When you're emotional, you tend to make irrational decisions. And the one thing that I hope that our players understand, through myself and this coaching staff, we're going to stay consistent with the things that we do and how we do them.

I think it's important. I think there's value to it, value in the sense that these players need to know that in a routine world is that's anything other than routine that there's something consistent and constant that they can trust. And what they can trust I'm going to show up every single day with the same attitude, the same position. So I don't need to go in that clubhouse, tell them anything other than what I've been telling them all year long, and that we believe in them, we trust them, now go play.


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