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October 27, 2019

Gerrit Cole

Washington, D.C. - postgame 5

Houston - 7, Washington - 1

Q. AJ mentioned that he visited you on the mound to sort of calm you down after that Zimmerman pitch. Can you take us through that and how he does that generally through the course of any given season?
GERRIT COLE: AJ? He's just really in tune with the game. I think being the catcher for his playing career gives him an advantage in situations like that. And he just came out, gave us a breath and kind of stated the obvious. And we just made pitches after that.

Q. To what degree, if at all, did you have to adjust your approach to the game with that start, did that affect in any way you approached the game?

Q. What was the biggest difference between tonight and Game 1?
GERRIT COLE: I thought this stuff was crisper, I thought we executed more pitches. Yeah.

Q. And then you really got out of one jam. Walk us through first and third, no outs?
GERRIT COLE: So 2-1, quality change-up to Soto. Does a good job staying through the play of the ball, lofting over Yuli. Tried to go up and over Kendrick. Leave it over the plate at the top of the zone, another good swing, George does a fantastic job cutting the ball off. We're in a first and third situation, not trying to get too far ahead of ourselves.

Need to make a couple of pitches to Zimmerman, execute those. And then just take a step back and breathe. Know we're at the bottom of the lineup. You can kind of smell the pitcher's spot coming up, you don't want to get too far ahead of yourself. It's a tight ball game, you can afford to give up one; but you can't afford to give up a huge inning.

You're just going to make your pitches, get a little bit of leverage to Robles, keep the pressure on him. Fortunately, the ground ball was hit hard enough that we were able to turn the double play. We didn't get fortunate in the first game with Rendon in a similar situation where we weren't able to go around the horn because the ball was hit too slow. We executed a couple of pitches there.

But the mindset is if we lose Robles we can still attack Gomes. And then if we lose Gomes, we've got the pitcher coming up.

But you want to be aware, I think, after you get one out. It's important to get one out. If Zimmerman flies out there or takes a deep fly ball or grounds out and we get one in, let's say we don't turn a double play, we've only got one out, that's kind of the focus there. Once we got the leverage we went to some put-away pitches and executed them.

Q. You came into this town down 0-2. You leave up 3-2. What does that say about the resiliency of this club and what you have been through in the past and how much that helps in these kinds of situation?
GERRIT COLE: We have some guys that are experienced in the World Series, for sure. So that's an advantage.

I think "resiliency" is a great word. I think this club demonstrates that trait. And we've demonstrated that trait throughout the whole year. I think we drew a lot on our experiences throughout the season.

This is a seven-game series, we just came off a seven-game series. Ultimately if you push these series deep, six, seven games, you're going to end up playing a lot of games in October.

And so we just take the mentality like we took during the regular season, we're just going to kind of put one foot in front of the next, respond to the challenges that come our way and you shower off the mistakes, and celebrate the amazing plays. Celebrate the amazing pitches.

Q. Your last pitch of the game, the 3-2 pitch to Robles, maybe you got the benefit of the doubt on the call. Do you think you had another batter in you if that would have been called ball 4?
GERRIT COLE: They were going to -- that was -- I didn't even notice who was on deck. I just wasn't going to give in in that situation. We had gotten deep enough into the game that we had our guys up in the bullpen. In that situation after one run in, you have a three-run lead, you're trying to stay away from the rallies. So you're just going to make your pitches.

I felt that I did get fortunate on that call but I thought that I was unfortunate on the 3-2 count previously.

Q. With your outing today you're tied for the most strikeouts in postseason history. How confident do you feel in Verlander for Game 6?
GERRIT COLE: Well, that's actually -- I didn't know that. That's pretty neat. That's pretty special. That's all I got.

And then in terms of Verlander, a high level of confidence. He's prepared. He's ready for this moment. We've been communicating back and forth throughout the whole series on how we were going to make an adjustment to what we were seeing and how we were going to attack.

So it's going to be business as usual for him. He's going to set the tone for us. Hopefully we can back him up with some runs, and play some great D. But these next 27 outs that we're going to have to get to end up finishing this thing off are going to be the hardest that we've had to get all year. So we're going to need to rest up and prepare ourselves for that.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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