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March 11, 2017

Jason Marquis

Tyler Krieger

Sam Fuld

Tokyo, Japan

Q. You just arrived here in Tokyo yesterday. How is your condition physically?
JASON MARQUIS: Physically, we're prepared. Mentally, we're prepared. The travel, the accommodations have been pretty good. We got in at a good enough hour. Got ourselves a good dinner, and I think we'll be able to get some good rest tonight. I think we're excited about the opener tomorrow against Cuba. But all in all, we're ready to go and ready to get this thing started.

TYLER KRIEGER: I think it's been a really good experience so far. We're excited to be here and we're looking forward to playing tuba tomorrow. Everything has been going good so far, so we'll get a good night's sleep tonight and be ready to go tomorrow.

SAM FULD: Yeah, a degree with what Tyler and Jason said. We're all feeling pretty good. I think we had some pretty intense games in Korea, some long games, and we were pretty tired coming off of those three games.

It was nice that our last game against the Netherlands wasn't quite as intense as the first two, knowing that we had already clinched coming here. So we're all caught up on sleep and it's nice to have a couple days where we have some nice light workouts and let our bodies recover.

Q. This is the first time ever Team Israel is attending the WBC tournament. What is your impression of Team Japan?
JASON MARQUIS: Well, we got a good group of guys from young talent to older guys like myself and Sam that bring a little bit of experience to the table. We've been executing real well. Our scouts have done a real good job of preparing us with information on our opponents, and as players, our job is to execute that game plan, and I think we've done a good job on that as a whole.

The pitchers have thrown the ball real well. Our defense have caught the ball real well, and we've got timely hitting. And in that second game, the offense allowed the defense and the pitching to relax a little bit and put four runs up on the board early.

Hopefully we can continue with this momentum. We're playing good baseball and we're confident where we are at right now. We know our opponents are going to be tough. They are going to come ready to play these next three days. But we're excited about the opportunity and to show everybody that we can compete on a high level, also.

TYLER KRIEGER: I think we're playing good baseball like Jason said, and I think we just have to continue to catch and throw the ball and hit with runners in scoring position like we have. And I think good things are going to happen.

Obviously our scouts have been giving us good stuff on our opponents, and you know, we've been put in pretty good positions to have success.

So we look forward to playing Cuba tomorrow and we're going to take it one game at a time and not look ahead to Japan or the Netherlands. You know, just play our game; I think with each game, we've gained a little bit of confidence, and I think it's only going to continue to grow.

SAM FULD: I think we have great respect for every team in this tournament, whether it's the original 16 teams or the final four or the final eight. I think we have a lot of respect for the way the Japanese play baseball. But like Tyler said, we're not going to look too far ahead. Our thoughts are focused on Cuba tomorrow, and I think that's part of why we were so successful in Korea is that we just took it one game at a time. Didn't worry about the long run. And in general, that's the way you play good baseball is you live in the moment and you don't get too far ahead of yourself.

Q. Jerry mentioned that Jason, you will be the probable starter for tomorrow. What's your thought for tomorrow?
JASON MARQUIS: Just like any other game. You know, I have to physically prepare myself, mentally prepare myself. I'm excited about pitching in front of these passionate Japanese fans. This is my third time coming to Tokyo where I've enjoyed every moment that I've been here.

But my attention now is turned to Cuba. We will go over scouting reports over the Cuban team. I'm glad that Jerry has the confidence in me to give me the ball and help lead this team and keep us going and get us to the next round.

So I'm as prepared as I will be, and now it's a matter of going out there and keeping my emotions in check and just execute and pitch by pitch, and batter by batter, and hopefully it leads to some scoreless innings. I'm definitely excited and I'm ready to go about the opportunity.

TYLER KRIEGER: I don't know what you're asking me. Every time he has the ball, we're going to feel confident.

So we're excited to have Jason on the mound. He's obviously pitched in a lot of big games in his career, so he's been here before. And we'll be ready to play good defense behind him. He's pitched with good tempo and good pace the first couple games and got some really quick, efficient innings to get us back if the dugout and have our offense have a chance to score some runs for him.

Yeah, any time Jason takes the mound, we're going to feel confident.

SAM FULD: Jason is as good a competitor as I've ever played with. I played with him ten years ago in my rookie year in the major leagues and I saw that kind of competitiveness and it has not changed ten years later. There's nobody that I feel more comfortable getting the ball to open up this pool play.

Q. You just had a practice and I believe that you are the first to experience playing and practice here in the Tokyo Dome, and the Tokyo Dome is not a big stadium, and the hitters tend to hit a lot of home runs. Personally, I have a question for Jason. Cuba, Japan and Netherlands have a lot of power hitters, and they can beat you at home runs. So how do you prepare for the power hitters lineups? When you take the infield for the Tokyo Dome, what's your impression?
JASON MARQUIS: Well, obviously just like you're in Tokyo, just like back home in the States, we have ballparks that play big. Some play small. But at the end of the day, you try not to let the elements of a stadium affect how you're going to go about your game.

My job is to come up with a game plan with my coaches, my catcher, and I've got to execute that game plan, no matter who steps in the batter's box, whether it's a powerful Cuban or Japanese team, or it's Mike Trout or Albert Pujols. At the end of the day, my goal is to make pitches down in the zone, use my defense. And our defense is playing really well, so I plan on attacking, aggressive attitude, and force the Cuban team or whoever I may face to hit the pitches I want them to hit. That's the way I try to go about my business and we'll see what happens tomorrow.

TYLER KRIEGER: About the infield, the way it's playing, we came from Korea where that field played fairly fast, especially in the infield. However it was dirt, and this one is all turf.

So taking ground balls today, I guess I just noticed that the ground ball, the pace of the ground ball, is a little more like a normal all-dirt field, and I don't think it should come into much of a factor. The pace of the ground ball is going to be fairly normal. It's a nice playing surface. Seems like a good place to play, so I'm excited about it.

Q. You mentioned how you're tight-knit and you have a good mix of veterans and younger players. What was that process like, coming together and building that chemistry, and how has that strengthened since you've gone on this nice run you've started the tournament with?
JASON MARQUIS: Well, obviously it started, I guess back in 2012, when I wasn't part of the team. So a lot of these guys have -- they came in with a goal in mind. I think they weren't happy with how 2012 finished, and I think with the new additions, I think that was the main focus when they put the qualifying team together for 2016.

I think everybody who came on board for the Brooklyn qualifier sort of took that same sentiment and was excited about the opportunity to I guess help redeem what they lost in 2012. Since then, we've made more additions, young guys like Tyler, Sam, obviously wasn't part of the qualifier. He was doing his thing in the big leagues.

So we all just went on board and we're all pulling in the same direction. We all have the same goal in mind. Like I said, I don't think we've shocked ourselves. There may be a different theory than what everybody else is thinking, but we know we have a good group of guys that know how to play the game the right way whether they are young or old, and we are playing for the same reasons and like I said, we are all pulling in the same direction, which goes a long way.

TYLER KRIEGER: Coming in, I didn't know what to expect in terms of how the clubhouse field would be. But to come in here and have these veteran guys be able to help us out and some of the younger guys, it's been an unbelievable experience.

You know, I think it's a pretty unique situation where you have a unique mix of players, young and old, come together for one common goal so early in the year, and just to play these meaningful games has been pretty cool.

You know, I think like you said, you know, we have believed from the minute we met each other as a team that we were going to win each game we played. You know, that's kind of the coolest part for me is just to see the confidence grow with each game and the cohesiveness in the clubhouse, how close it is, even though we've only known each other for a short period of time, makes it for a pretty neat experience.

SAM FULD: I think it's been pretty easy for us to come together. We've all gotten to know each other at various points in the process like we talked about, as early as 2012, and a lot of guys got to know each other in Brooklyn in September of last year.

And yet we still have two new guys who probably don't know half of us that showed up today, and yet we've welcomed them in. I think it's easier to welcome them; we share this bond, all being Jewish, that we're in a bit of a minority when we play in the United States. It's a fraternity, and I think we're a close-knit bunch in large part because of that, because we have this common bond. That makes it easier and more enjoyable I think to play for each other.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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