June 21, 2022
Omaha, Nebraska, USA
Texas A&M Aggies
Postgame Press Conference
Texas A&M - 5, Notre Dame - 1
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: I thought it was a great ball game. Obviously Nathan was just outstanding in every sense of the word, coming back on short rest, which is exactly what we needed. And we got enough timely hits. We had chances to break the game open many times, either had a base-running mistake or they made a pitch or Bost hit that ball hard to center field that the center fielder ran down. We'll take it.
Congratulations to Notre Dame on just an unbelievable season. Link Jarrett, can't say enough about the job he and his staff have done. My first year of coaching Clemson, 1993, he was playing shortstop at Florida State. Happy to see him doing so well. Best wishes to the Fighting Irish.
Q. Nathan, how were you able to rebound from a rough start in game one and have a strong outing today?
NATHAN DETTMER: It was tough for sure. I'm not going to lie to you. After Friday, I felt just terrible, like I let my team down.
But to come back and have Coach give me the ball just two games later, all that confidence just flowed through me and to know they trust me and that the players trust me, behind me. All I had to do was believe in myself. That's what happened and had some success today.
Q. Nathan, what was the conversation like with you and Coach when he told you that you were going to be starting?
NATHAN DETTMER: He just told me straight up, he was, like, when do you want to go. I told him whenever. He said we need you tomorrow. That was yesterday. He told me I was going today. And I was, like, let's do it, let's go. I want it.
Just to kind of redeem myself and again to know that he trusted me with the ball. And it was amazing, and to know my guys behind me believed in me it was amazing.
Q. Nathan, when did you know that you had the sinker going like it was? And, Trevor, when you're playing defense behind a guy who is sinking the ball like that, did you anticipate all the action you had at third?
NATHAN DETTMER: Right from the start, in the bullpen, when I was down there with Troy, I was getting really good to my glove side and to my arm side, that sinker. I knew if I gave it a shot, what I've been doing recently is starting it outside and it's become a ball, and starting it inside become a ball. But if I just attack the middle and trust my line, throw some strikes, I know I have a shots, and I know these guys can work behind me.
TREVOR WERNER: He was doing a great job locating all three of his pitches, three or four. I would look up at the big screen and see guys completely swing over the sinker. It was starting in the right spot and finishing in the right spot. They obviously didn't have fun with it.
It's fun to play behind that because you know you're going to get a lot of rollovers like me and Kole did today. And we know when he's on, we're going to get a lot of plays. The whole team's feeling good when Dettmer's going.
Q. How much in your scouting did you know about these Notre Dame hitters? Seemed like they were pretty aggressive early on. How much did that factor in when you were facing them today?
NATHAN DETTMER: I didn't know too much about them, but just in the little scouting report. I knew, we talked about it, that they were going to be on swing and they were going to be aggressive on the base paths and they're out to punch you right in the face. If you just attack and let them swing over my sinker I was going to have success, and that's what happened today.
Q. Trevor, Coach talked about how if you could all get nice pitching outing like Nathan gave you guys, it could potentially really help the offense just kind of get back out there after a quick inning, quick three outs and get in that rhythm. Is that something you feel like with what the guys did kind of help your offense especially those third, fourth inning?
TREVOR WERNER: 100 percent. When Dettmer is out there rolling we're spending five minutes on defense. It saves a lot of energy and you get just get right back on them and keep pressure on Notre Dame. And that's what we did all day and I think that's what helped us be successful and get the win.
Q. Obviously Coach has been here a lot and has navigated the losers' bracket and whatnot. Can you just tell us how the past few days have gone for you guys in terms of approach, handling the pitching? And do you feel like his experience kind of transferred over to you and gave you confidence?
TREVOR WERNER: Yeah, we just talked about, a couple days ago, before our first elimination game, that we're just going to win one game at a time and don't let the Aggies win one. At this point, we're on two one-game win streaks. And we're feeling good and confident and ready to take on OU again.
NATHAN DETTMER: Well said. That's all I've got.
Q. Trevor, Coach talked about how important it was to play a clean game. You got that one out of the way early and played a clean game. And how redemptive was it, even though it didn't hurt you, to hit the home run? And what did you hit?
TREVOR WERNER: First batter for them, just kind of came out of my legs a little bit and went under my glove. I went, so what, learn from it. Just gotta stay down and stay on my legs.
And next batter bunt, right back to it. Felt good to get that one out of the way, and that was the only one of the game the rest was clean.
On the homer, I was actually walking up to the plate it was to lead-off of the inning, I looked at the painting of the College World Series, like, behind home plate. I was like, you know what, this is pretty cool. And that let me relax a little bit.
And I put a good swing -- he was throwing kind of a cut fastball a little bit, and it was pretty much the same pitch I saw, I took the first pitch and then hit the home run on the second pitch. And it was just middle, middle, and I put my good swing on it.
Q. Nathan, can you tell us what it was like Friday for you, Friday night and then into Saturday after a hard day in the first game?
NATHAN DETTMER: As I said before, it was really tough. When I came out after that game, I just felt so little. And I felt like I let everyone down and I'm not going to lie to you. I went into my hotel room and I cried. I didn't know what to do. I felt lost.
But I have a good friend, Micah Dallas, he texted me that for one game it doesn't define me as a person. And baseball doesn't really define me as a person. All my worth is through God. And I just prayed to him that night. And he just told me that's not my story.
And he's got a plan for me. And that one game wasn't it. And I just had to trust in his plan. I know he had a plan for me. And I had success today and it was awesome, great feeling.
Q. Coach, did you have Moo Menefee diving for an out on your bingo card today?
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: No, I didn't, but the pitch before I looked back at Coach Yeskie and said, we can pick this guy off; he's not paying attention to what's going on.
Normally they're not looking to run, but Menefee, his pick-off move, it's a weapon. So you'll see us do that every now and then, obviously if the guy is running, but also if we're trying to steal an out.
It wasn't the most beautiful rundown, but Moo, he got it done. And we had to take a time-out so we could clean up a little bit.
Q. Why Nathan?
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: Well, I just felt like he had only thrown 44 pitches. I didn't like the matchup if we were going to throw Prager. You want to be left-handed. OU's a great team, whether you're a right-handed pitcher or left-handed pitcher. But I think you would rather be left-handed against them as much as you can.
And obviously we want to win and stay here but also I'd like to win the thing. And I felt like if we're going to have a chance to win the College World Series and play, still be playing on Sunday or Monday, Dettmer was going to have to pitch twice.
The longer we waited to start him the less likely he'd be able to do it or he would have to do it on even shorter rest. The fact that he'd only thrown 44 pitches on Friday gave us an opportunity to do that. And him being a sinkerball guy. Usually those guys there sometimes can be a little bit better on a little bit shorter rest.
That was the thought process. I honestly didn't think we had an option. I thought that was the only option. If we were going to, A, try to beat Notre Dame; and B, try to win the College World Series, which we're a long way from that. But you understand what I'm saying. If he's going to pitch twice, three times in the series, we needed to get the middle one over with.
Q. What was the issue with the mound in the seventh inning?
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: No disrespect to the grounds crew, I think the mound's been an issue throughout the course of the week. I saw, was it Preston Johnson? The pitcher for Ole Miss last night? Brandon Johnson, that fell down. Our guys were complaining about it.
I think it's just really dry. There's some holes. I don't know if there's different clay or something, what's going on. But it's been an issue.
Q. When you look at the three games that you guys have played so far, would you say that this was the best defensive effort that your team gave so far?
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: Yeah, we only -- we punched out eight guys. Obviously Trevor had a really nice game. Nobody's asked yet about the Menefee, first and second, nobody out, and we get the 5-3 double play.
I thought that was our best game. Certainly wasn't our best base running game. There were a few things there. Some I'm okay with. Some I'm not.
But I thought it was, in terms of pitching and defense, by far our cleanest. We only walked two guys and hit one. So I thought we did a better job of limiting free bases.
Q. I know you kind of feel like you have unfinished business, but to get in College baseball's final four in year one, that's a pretty high bar.
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: That's pretty awesome. Super proud of the kids, how far they've come from not just the beginning of the season, but I mean this last time last year we didn't even have a coaching staff. A third of this team wasn't even a Texas A&M Aggie yet. We were still recruiting out of the transfer portal.
You look up a year later and you're playing, like you said we're in the Final Four of college baseball. Great tribute to the kids. The coaching staff, administration, everybody committed to having a great program. And everybody has given themselves up for the common good.
And this team, whether we win or lose the rest of this thing, they're going to be remembered for a really long time and brought a lot of excitement back to Texas A&M baseball, and people are fired up.
Q. Obviously Nathan put in a solid outing, but in terms of the length that he was able to go and the amount of innings he was able to eat up, how much does that help moving forward?
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: Obviously a ton. We've got to play three games in three days, correct, I think that's the tournament. So anybody that saves every possible pitch.
Palisch ran to the bullpen. I think he threw a couple. Hopefully we didn't use him too much. Now we're at the point where Dallas has pitched. He's not obviously going to be able to pitch anytime soon. Dettmer is obviously done for a while.
This is that point that every college coach talks about all year long where now you need something from somebody that you haven't gotten, whether it be a Prager or a Wyatt Tucker. Some other guys down there, Will Johnston will have to give us extended length to have a chance. And we're going to have to score against a great team.
All I know is our guys, we've been back in the corner all year long, especially with our pitching situation and we just keep fighting. So I know it sounds cliche, but Nathan definitely gave us some breathing room by going seven innings.
Q. You've seen the passion of this place. You had seen it before. Is it hard for you to believe that you now have half of the Aggies' College World Series victories and their appearances in history?
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: Yeah, I mean, I don't think much about that. I don't know the past history. I know the program's been awesome. I respect how hard it is to get here. Coach Childress had a phenomenal run -- 13 straight trips to the NCAA Tournament. I hope I'm able to be part of that for the next 13 years. And then two trips to the colleges.
And know the way the ball bounced against TCU a couple times. It could have been four. And that completely changes things.
It's so hard to win a game much less a game in the College World Series. I'm super respectful of how hard that is. And obviously we have a university that's committed to winning at the highest level. And we're all hired for a reason and that's to get here and win here. That's easier said than done.
You don't just get to throw money at something and twinkle your noise and have it happen. But you just want to be in position every year. And if you're in position every year, the way the ball bounces, you get a great pitching performance like today, who knows? You can stay here for a long time.
Q. That second inning, top of the second inning where got the called strike looking and the base running mistake, seemed like it could have potentially been a momentum change in the game. But obviously your guys responded well. Did you say anything to the guys? And if not what pleased you with how they responded to the situation?
JIM SCHLOSSNAGLE: You're talking about Bost at second base? Yeah, we thought we had something on the starting pitcher. He actually did exactly what I wanted him to do. I think that was the first time, at least on video, all year long that Simon, first time all year long, at least on video, that he's run that little inside move.
Normally when he doesn't look at second base he pitches. We talked about it in the scouting report. So they got us. That's a baseball play. And those things happen in baseball. There was one out. We had just punched out trying to get to third base with one out. And we want to play offense offensively.
I didn't think that was a reckless play. The fly-ball tag-up, whatever happened there, I'm way more upset about that than an attempt at a stolen base.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports