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October 7, 2019

Dave Martinez

Washington, D.C. - postgame 4

Nationals - 6, Dodgers - 1


Q. Can you walk through the 7th, Max's run out of gas and got too hot, lefty Pederson, what's the conversation, what did Menhart say to Max and what went on?
DAVE MARTINEZ: He just wanted to give him a little breather. As you know, typical Max, I think he said something like he's coming in but, hey, this is part of it, let's go. It was Max's game at that point. We had Doo up for Muncy. Max got the ground ball. What an incredible performance by Max tonight. He gave it everything he had.

Q. What has it meant to you that your star players, your biggest name players have stepped up in this series kind of making the difference for you in the games that you've won, not just on the mound but guys like Rendon and Zimmerman tonight, for the biggest guys on your team to be the ones that are delivering?
DAVE MARTINEZ: Yeah, I've been in this game a long time and big moments big players seem to come through. Tonight Anthony and Zim, I mean Zim, that was huge. He understands his role but he came tonight and he got a chance to start and, man, what a huge moment for us. Proud of him.

Q. It's the playoffs. You don't usually barrel up many people?
DAVE MARTINEZ: Can you say that to Muncy?

Q. Can you describe the release of emotion when Zim caught that and got it out?
DAVE MARTINEZ: Hey, it was, for me in those moments I just, I take a look real quick at the dugout. That's what fires me up is the guys. Because they were battling hard. And when those big moments come you can see it in their faces. It's huge, it's incredible, it's a feeling that I can't describe, really. But to go on top like that and Max is on the mound, that's the burst we needed.

Q. That ball of Zim's stayed in the air, they timed it and everything, over six seconds, it was more than 30 degrees, the wind was trying to blow it down. I mean other balls got killed. What were you thinking in the six seconds, they're going to catch it, the wind's going to kill it?
DAVE MARTINEZ: No I was in the, I was blowing.


Yeah, but, hey, it was up there for a long time. But even he said, he came back and he admittedly said, I crushed that ball. And I said, well, I'm just glad it just went out. So but, yeah, like I said, huge moment, he comes through in a big way.

Q. Did you think about hitting Cabrera for Zimmerman at that moment?
DAVE MARTINEZ: No, no. I mean, like I said, these guys, he's a veteran guy. For me typically I don't pinch hit for those guys because, like I said, I've been in this game a long time and I've seen guys like Zim come through in big moments and he did that tonight.

Q. Max early on seemed like he was almost dialing it back a little bit, trying to be more efficient, getting quick outs. And then second half of the outing maybe starting to dial up a little more. Do you think that was by design realizing that he needed to get you deeper in the game and keep the pitch count down?
DAVE MARTINEZ: When he came out and I saw him throwing 95, I really felt we were going to be in good shape. He was in a good place, he wasn't trying to over amp, and he understood. Like I said, I told him, hey, you're going to have to throw, I'm going to have you throw 120 pitches today, but he did everything we asked him to do and more. I came in and I'm not going to say jokingly, but I was hoping he would go 8. But he gave us 7 and we handed the ball to Doo and Huddie.

Q. He likes to empty the tank, I guess, given his choice almost every time. Is that the farthest to the empty that you've seen his needle, I guess, in your time with him?
DAVE MARTINEZ: Yeah, we were all, that, I could say there was 33, 34 guys pushing the car behind him. I mean, he was at his wits end right there. But like I said, another guy, veteran guy, big moment, comes through. Bases loaded, comes through, big outs.

Q. In your couple years here, what have you learned about how much Zimmerman means to this franchise and these fans being a career National from the very beginning?
DAVE MARTINEZ: I mean, yeah, to this organization, to the whole Washington fans, to our ball club, I mean, getting him back and now that he's healthy, he's helped us out. The last month he's helped us out. So the key is to keep him healthy. And I know that he wants to continue to play, and part of it is to stay healthy.

Q. Speaking of career Nationals, you obviously have Stephen going in Game 5. Just with everything he's been through and what he's meant to this franchise, how do you feel about giving him the ball in a game like this?
DAVE MARTINEZ: It's not going to be hard, that's for sure. But, yeah, he's, like I said, he's a big reason why we're playing Game 5. And I'm glad we gave him the ball and run him out there and see how long he can go for us.

Q. Zim has struck out twice before he came to bat there, you had Adams a left-handed hitter potentially or Cabrera who can switch hit. Was that one of those analytics moments where you instead went with baseball feelings or whatever you want to call it?
DAVE MARTINEZ: Yeah, I mean I liked, I really liked him on Baez, I did. The biggest thing was to lay off the sliders down, but he was aggressive. And he has been more aggressive especially with fastballs lately. So he put a really good swing on the ball.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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