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December 11, 2019

Brian Snitker

San Diego, California

Q. What have been your thoughts as Alex has pursued Donaldson and the order of the bat? How much of a need is that, and how much would you like to have Donaldson back?
BRIAN SNITKER: I'd love to have Josh back just because I've had him before. He's one of those guys that you kind of grow attached to. What he brought, what he did for our club. I understand how the business end of this works too. Alex is, I think, so far in the off-season has done a great job in what he's done, and I think that bat is, it's a big deal. Whether we can do it, I don't know, but if we don't, we'll be fine. We'll piece it together somewhere else.

It's not as easy as -- it's not as easy as wanting it, I know that. But I've got every confidence in the world in what he's doing, what this team's doing, as evidenced already by what we've done this off-season.

Q. Are you in contact with Josh at all?
BRIAN SNITKER: I texted him a couple times, and I would have anyway. You go through the season with a guy like that and what he did, and like I say, he grows on you. He's a good man. He's a bright player. I'm pulling for him no matter where he's at.

Q. Brian, Austin Riley got off to a great start last year when he came up and then really fell off. How would you characterize his position with the team heading into 2020?
BRIAN SNITKER: He's going through growing pains that a lot of young players go through. I referenced earlier, it's like Ozzie kind of last year had the same type of situation. It's just part of the growing process. It's part of the learning process with a kid. He's aware of it. He's going to be working this off-season, and when we get to Spring Training we'll see where he's at and how he fits.

We love Austin Riley. I love Austin Riley. I think his upside is huge. We saw what he can do. But he's a young player, and we know in this league you don't surprise anybody for very long in the game anymore, and he's going to have to make adjustments, as they all do. Everybody has to at some point in time. He's very capable of that.

Like I say, we're very confident in his abilities, his aptitude, everything. The work ethic, everything he's got going on, and we look at him to be a special player for us at some point in time.

Q. If the chips fell a certain way, would you feel comfortable for him as your Opening Day (indiscernible)?
BRIAN SNITKER: Yeah, but you never know what might happen. We'll get to Spring Training, see where he's at. I've got a lot of confidence in the kid. I've seen what he can do. I think he's been a guy that's repeatedly, he's made adjustments. He's shown he can make adjustments, so I don't have any -- I don't know why now that I don't have any doubt he'll do it at this level also.

Q. With what Josh did batting behind Freddy last year, how important is it to get a guy, whether it's him or someone else to protect Freddy the way he did last year?
BRIAN SNITKER: You look at every team, and that guy -- we used to talk about that with chipper and trying to get somebody behind him. I think it's big. It's important. Will it happen? I don't know. I'd sure like for it to. And then I think it will definitely make us a better team if we can do it. But it still remains to be seen.

Q. And what about the chemistry part of the equation with him? You lose Brian McCann, obviously, that's a big one. Will that be a job to get that restored, that chemistry you had last year and the year before.
BRIAN SNITKER: No, I don't think so. We had it two years ago. We had it this year. We'll continue to have it. It's a good clubhouse. It's a good corps of guys. As much as we'd like to have that, I don't think one entity is going to make that much difference. It's a really strong -- the makeup of our club is an asset for us, I think, and how those guys compete, how they work, how they -- so I don't think it's going to be a huge hole. I think anybody -- like Cole Hamels, he has a lot of credibility, and I think he's going to be great for our clubhouse, but we've got really good ones in there.

Q. How encouraging is it to know how much more depth and experience you have in that bullpen than you did?
BRIAN SNITKER: Very much. You see how important that bullpen is, especially over a long season, having pieces that you can mix and match, and the depth is huge. Because it's hard to -- it's hard to go into your Minor Leagues and get depth like that. I think the Major League depth will just allow the Minor League guys, hopefully to mature more, to keep pitching and get experience.

It takes a lot of guys to get through the year, as we all know. But I think going into it with the experience and depth we have is going to be another big asset to what we've got going on.

Q. Now that you've signed Hamels, are you still looking for another starting pitcher?
BRIAN SNITKER: I think you're always looking for pitching. I don't know that you ever have enough. I don't know. We'll see what's out there, see whatever. But like I say, I don't think you can ever have enough starting pitchers.

Q. What kind of an impact do you think Cole Hamels could make both in the rotation and also for the staff? Similar to maybe what Dallas Keuchel did when he came in last year?
BRIAN SNITKER: Yeah, I think he'll be really good for our club. I think he'll be good for our young starters, our young pitchers. I think he'll be good for our team. Again, I think just adding a piece like that is really -- is big for us.

Same thing when we got Dallas. Guys that bring that extra credibility that have been on top of the mound and been successful Major Leaguers, and Cole is the same. He's that guy. So I think that it's going to be great for our club.

Q. Following up on that, how nice will it be to have Cole from day one of Spring Training because Dallas came in the middle of the season?
BRIAN SNITKER: That will be great too. It was a great sign last year getting Dallas and big for our club. It was just having Cole in Spring Training, the work ethic, how these guys go about it, they've been -- it's tough to be a starting pitcher in the National League and make all the starts and what you have to do, and our guys learned a lot last year, getting through our year, our young guys.

Having another guy like that that's been through it, knows how to do it, and the steadiness of what it takes to be successful in that position, I think he's going to be great for our club.

Q. Hey, Snit, you've been around a while. Commissioner said the league has never undertaken such an investigation with the sign stealing situation. Have you always had some strong feelings on that just in general and then the current situation as well?
BRIAN SNITKER: Not particularly. Guys have been trying to figure out an edge for as long as we've been playing. Whether it's guys tipping pitches, they study it. Some guys are better at it than others and getting advantages. I've never really spent a lot of time with it. I mean, I think a lot of it -- you know, it's been going on for a long time, the stuff that on the field type things.

Q. Are you curious, like everyone else, what the results of this is going to be?
BRIAN SNITKER: Yeah, it will be interesting to see what happens.

Q. When it comes to the proposed three batter minimum, how does that impact your strategy, do you think?
BRIAN SNITKER: Well, it's going to. It's going to be -- we're going to have to be aware of it. I think it will become our new norm. There's something that you're always adjusting to in this game. It's players do it, the staff, the managers, the front office -- we're all making adjustments all the time in this game trying to stay ahead.

I've had to make the adjustments and have new normals in my career, in my job, and players have had to do it. With the analytical age and things that are going on now, there's a lot of new normal. That's just going to be another new normal. After we get in there and we do it, it will just become what we do. So it's something that's going to be different, and we all have to be aware of it and how we plan and how we go about it, I think, as it goes. In the end, it will just become, like I say, a new normal for us, and it won't be that big of a deal.

Q. Is the additions, the type of guys that you added, the Will Smiths and Chris Martin coming back, does that help in that regard?
BRIAN SNITKER: Absolutely. They're not matchup guys. They're clean inning pitchers. They're guys that can finish an inning, go back out, and that's huge. I think that's going to go into the development of young relievers in the Minor Leagues. We're going to have to be aware of that, and they're going to have to be able to not be matchup guys. That's going to be kind of probably a lost art with that a little bit.

You have to pick your spots with certain guys, and it's going to be in the development of pitchers and probably in structuring your bullpen. I think right now I feel real good with where we're at in that regard.

Q. Does the rule tend to probably favor offense at all because you can't mix and match the same way?
BRIAN SNITKER: Every now and then, you're going to get a matchup that you probably don't want just because of that. And that happens anyway. Sometimes you get backed into a corner and don't exactly get a matchup that's ideal. You try and navigate through that, so that may end up being a part of it.

Q. Any good reports on Freddy's elbow?
BRIAN SNITKER: Yeah, feels great. Last time I talked to him, he said he hadn't felt that good in a long time. I think he's going to be really excited about -- he's probably going to be excited about his workouts this winter and coming to Spring Training. I know he feels really, really good.

Q. Do you think Foltynewicz is kind of how he was?
BRIAN SNITKER: Yes, after the slow start and getting behind the 8 ball a little bit, and I saw him the other day, he's already started his workouts. He's another one that feels great. I think he's going to be excited about getting going and feeling healthy. Hopefully, we'll get him through Spring Training and get a full Spring Training. Again, the kid's got tremendous upside, and we just keep hanging with them.

But I think he'll be -- every time they go through things like that, I think they cherish each day, and they just become wiser and more appreciative of everything they have.

Q. Sort of come out the other side better for it sort of thing?
BRIAN SNITKER: Exactly, yeah, after what they go through.

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