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October 13, 2017

Joe Girardi

Houston, Texas - postgame 1

Houston - 2, New York - 1

JOE GIRARDI: This should be Joe Girardi.

THE MODERATOR: Take questions for Joe.

Q. How was Keuchel able to keep you guys off balance tonight?
JOE GIRARDI: He's got that late movement on both sides of the plate. I thought our at-bats were much better against him the second time through the lineup and we had a chance to score, it's a bang-bang play at home plate, a perfect throw by Gonzales.

But it's who he is. He's a very good pitcher.

Q. What was your thinking in terms of asking for a replay on the play at the plate?
JOE GIRARDI: Well, we thought he was out. But God knows I'm not doing that again.

Q. You answered my second question. 3-2, 2 outs, did you think Bird jumped?
JOE GIRARDI: I would have to look at it. You think it's a ball with 3-2 that he's going to score on. But again, if he's 10 percent faster, 5 percent faster, he scores. It's just the speed that he has. There's so many great things that he brings to the table.

So it's a bang-bang play, it's a perfect throw, I would have to look more at it.

Q. Keuchel just said that he faulted a little bit in the fourth and fifth. He looked a little more gettable. You guys had a shot tonight.
JOE GIRARDI: We had a shot. If Bird's safe maybe we really get to him in that inning, but he wasn't.

But again, I thought our at-bats got better off him, and hopefully they continue to improve.

Q. Altuve entered hot, he had been hitting the entire playoffs, obviously had a great season. But when you're watching him and he's like that, how difficult is it to pitch him to get him out and he created that first spark and they got it going?
JOE GIRARDI: I mean, he's a great player. He's one of the best players in all of baseball, and we know that. And you have to make your pitches and he's going to fight you tooth and nail and his hand-eye coordination is off the charts. I mean, it's really off the charts. He doesn't swing and miss a lot.

You would think with a guy that's aggressive sometimes there's going to be swing and miss but he's not. So he's got an unbelievable gift and he knows how to use it.

Q. I know usually you don't like to answer these questions right after the game but do you have any feel for who might DH against Verlander tomorrow?
JOE GIRARDI: Well, yeah, I mean, we'll talk about it as a staff like we do every day. We have some ideas. I'll go look at it some more and go watch at-bats and then we'll have a lineup tomorrow.

Q. I wonder if you could qualify how difficult it's going to be to get to a World Series if you don't start getting something out of that hitting slot in your lineup?
JOE GIRARDI: Yeah. I mean, we have a number of quality hitters in our lineup, so there's a lot of teams that you might have a spot that struggles during the playoffs just because you run into such good pitching. You can't expect the numbers that you're going to see necessarily during the course of a season from a lot of guys because you're seeing such good pitching. Bullpens are really good. But, yes, I believe we can.

Q. How do you evaluate Masa's pitching?
JOE GIRARDI: Really another strong outing. Just a really good outing. So he took the line drive off his leg and was able to finish, and that's not the reason I took him out. I took him out because I thought he gave us everything he had and I thought it was time to make a change. But just another great outing.

Q. How would you evaluate Aaron's at-bats?
JOE GIRARDI: I thought they were pretty good. Again, he's had probably more pitches called on him that are borderline or just off the plate than anyone that I've seen during this time for us in the playoffs.

But I thought his at-bats were pretty good. They're long, they're not easy, they're careful with him. He's grinding them out.

Q. And then in terms of him coming through, obviously ends up in an out, but coming through, what does that do for him?
JOE GIRARDI: It should give him a lot of confidence. He's a really good player and he's going to have struggles just like anyone else. But to me, I like him up in that spot because that game can change in a hurry.

THE MODERATOR: All right, thanks very much. Appreciate it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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