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March 12, 2017

Nolan Arenado

Eric Hosmer

Danny Duffy

Miami, Florida

USA - 8, Canada - 0

Q. For Eric, just wondering if you could talk about for the team the feeling or the emotions of getting past this weekend and getting on to the next round.
ERIC HOSMER: We're excited. It was a tough bracket. Skipper just talked about the way Colombia came out playing, and obviously it was an emotional game. It was an incredibly energetic game against Dominican Republic, and obviously today we had to go out and take care of business.

So, we're excited to move on to the next round. We know from this point on the tournament gets tougher and tougher, but we came here, took care of business, did what we had to do, and we're going to be ready for San Diego.

Q. Eric, after last night's tough loss, how important was it to set the tone early like you guys did? You hit the two-run double in the first and you're up 7-0 after two innings.
ERIC HOSMER: It's extremely important. That was such an emotional game and it was such a hard-fought game back and forth, and obviously they came back at the end and came out with a victory. So it was important for us to get off to a good start, and it was important for us to have Danny get a good start in for us. Obviously we used a lot of guys yesterday in our bullpen.

So I think we came today and did what we needed to do. The offense did a good job of putting up runs early and Duff did a good job of going out there and basically shutting them down.

Q. Danny, in the regular season you hear talk about rotations feeding off of each other. Can that happen in this event, and how did you feel going into tonight after two good ones by the other starters?
DANNY DUFFY: Absolutely. We feed off each other. I feel like I've played with these guys for a lot longer than I have. Archer and Stro, they set the table, and I was just trying to follow suit.

Every time I go out there and toe the rubber, I just try to keep it simple and as vanilla as possible. It may sound boring but three-pitch outs or less are my goal. The punch-outs will come when you get them 0-2, 1-2, and just don't play around too much, and just try to give my team as many outs as possible.

Q. For all you guys, you heard what the crowd was like yesterday. Everybody who was watching that game loved it. Do you think there's a point at which for an American game that does not involve the DR or another Latin American country, you can get an atmosphere like that? And how do you think that happens?
NOLAN ARENADO: I didn't get that question. Say that again.

Q. Just the atmosphere last night. Do you think that can happen at a Team USA game and how?
NOLAN ARENADO: I don't see why not. I think the way we have been playing baseball lately, I think that's going to set the tone for people to come out and watch us play. Obviously, the last couple games have been exciting, and yesterday's game was obviously incredible, but it was a lot Latin based, I guess in a way.

But we're playing the game the right way, and I think that we love the support of our fans. And I think if we keep competing the way we are right now, with having fun and the chemistry that we're building, the fans are kind of going to get connected to us, and I think if we just keep doing our thing, I think fans will understand that.

But we've got to win. Dominican Republic won it last year and they haven't lost yet in two years or the last couple times. So it's easy to be a fan for them. If we keep playing our game and keep doing our thing, I think we're going to start drawing some crowds.

Q. Because you guys are Team USA and expectations and everything else, just getting out of this round, do you think it will be easier in the sense that you will be more relaxed now?
DANNY DUFFY: I don't think it's going to be any easier. I just think that as time goes on, we'll get more polished in this atmosphere.

Regarding last night, that's an atmosphere that I've truthfully never been a part of. I mean, me and most Hoz were talking yesterday, it was the loudest I've ever heard any place ever. And it's a different style of fan base, they have a different approach to the game. Their passion for baseball and their country is pretty awesome. I think it's really cool. Obviously, we wish that we could have came out on top, but nonetheless, it was an incredible game to be a part of.

I think in the next round, I think that we'll be a little bit more polished. These guys are already polished enough. It's just about us building up our arm strength. This guy over here set the tone in the first inning, and seems like every time I pitch he comes up with a big knock.

So, we'll just keep going. We'll keep building up our pitch count and from a staff standpoint, I think that we're just going to get better and better.

Q. Jim Leyland has talked with us about downplaying the U.S.'s checkered history in this event. What is y'all's mindset on that front? Is there some motivation there? Do you just kind of not think about it, how would you describe it?
ERIC HOSMER: Well, we all want to win. I think that's what's so special about the team they put together here for us, it's a bunch of competitors. You got certain guys that are doing certain roles right now that we're not used to, but it's do whatever we can, just win at all costs.

So, I think that especially after last night and we keep talking about that game, just the energy alone I think it showed how much pride is in this tournament, how much excitement it brings, so I think that the way everyone's bought in, especially on our club, it's something special to see. It's a room full of all stars and a lot of guys with some championships under their belt. So it's really cool to see guys willing to do whatever they can to help the team win.

Q. Nolan, can you talk about that.
NOLAN ARENADO: I would agree. There's no doubt we're taking it real serious. I'm diving headfirst into first. I mean, I don't know how serious I can take it other than that. I love this and I love being here, and we're representing our country and it's not just a walk in the park. There's people that are watching us and they want us to take pride, and that's what we're trying to do. And I think we have done a good job of that so far in these three games, and if we keep doing that, I think good things are going to happen.

But like I said, I talked to Hoz about it, we're picking each other up. We're talking about the game. We're finding ways to get better and try to win, and we're not here to mess around. I didn't sign up for this to just have a good time. I came here to compete and come here to win, and I think we're doing the best we can. And if we keep having the same attitude like we have, good things will happen.

Q. For any of you guys, were you watching the Colombia-Dominican Republic game, and what were you thinking about in terms of like that last play with Castillo? Like Leyland was saying, if he drops that ball, you guys are probably forced into a tiebreaker that I'm sure nobody wanted.
ERIC HOSMER: Well, first of all, we had no choice to watch that game, we were stuck in that little auxiliary room with a TV. So we were all glued to the TV on that one. But I think that -- and we have harped on it now, everyone is really just talking about our game with Dominican Republic last night, but it just shows just the overall competitiveness in this tournament. I know they said on the broadcast it was about two minutes shorter than the Japan-Netherlands game that went to extra innings, and the tiebreaker and all that.

So it just shows the competitiveness of this tournament. It shows anybody can win on any day, and I think that's what has made this such an exciting venue, is it's not only everyone's looking forward to one game, and each pool and that's going to be the main game that everyone's glued to. I think now it's at the point where everybody realizes anything can happen on any day. So it's really drawing a lot of fans, and I think a lot of people are really enjoying what's going on in this tournament.

Q. This is for Nolan: Eric and Danny, they have won World Series. Jim talked about Buster and Crawford winning three. You've never been to the playoffs. How much of a motivation to play in this was that you haven't been and what has it been like playing in this kind of atmosphere really for the first time?
NOLAN ARENADO: I told John, I told John this awhile ago that this is probably the best, other than getting drafted and getting called to the Big Leagues, this is by far the best moment in my career. There's nothing better than playing in this and the atmosphere, I never been a part of anything like this.

Obviously, one day I hope to play in the playoffs, but from talking to these guys who have won championships, they tell me this is exactly how it is, if not a little bit louder.

So, there's been a lot of nerves, a lot of anxiety before these games start, but when the games start I'm all locked in and ready to go. I'm ready for these moments and it's nice to have good teammates and guys that compete with you there to pick you up and talk to you about the game, and they made it a lot easier on me. But, yeah, it's the best time I've ever had. I love being with these guys and it's so much fun.

Q. How long did you guys have in the clubhouse before the game? (Laughter).
ERIC HOSMER: 15 minutes.

DANNY DUFFY: You got an egg timer? (Laughter). I think I was in the training room trying to just respect the fact that Colombia just suffered a tough loss. I'm sitting in there and I'm doing more shoulder stuff than I think I've ever done in my life. I'm pretty, I like to think I'm pretty microwavable before games, so I'll get out there and go run out to center field and do it like the old way and we got in there, it was, I looked up and it was 6:36, and I was on the field at 6:38, so that should answer your question (Laughter).

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