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October 29, 2022

Dusty Baker

Houston, Texas, USA

Minute Maid Park

Houston Astros

Postgame 2 Press Conference

Houston Astros - 5, Philadelphia Phillies - 2

THE MODERATOR: We'll start with questions for Dusty.

Q. After Game 1 was so tough the way that ended what's it say, and I think we ask you this every time your team responds, but what's it say about your team to come out in that first inning and have three back-to-back doubles and in some ways put that game away early?

DUSTY BAKER: Well, we didn't exactly put it away. They were always threatening over there, as you saw, how they came back on us yesterday.

But this team has a short memory on bad occurrences and bad games. You can't bring yesterday into today or else it will continue. You have to start all over again and just realize it's a new day and hopefully we have a different outcome.

Q. Do you already have the starting pitcher for the third game in Philadelphia or not yet?

DUSTY BAKER: Yes, we have Lance McCullers. He's starting the third game in Philadelphia.

Q. It seems like you've been saying every day that Altuve was due for a big game and he finally had one. How good was that for you to see him finally break out?

DUSTY BAKER: Well, it was great. If I say it every day, it's got to happen one of these days. You know just how I feel about Altuve. His track record speaks for itself. I mean, he swung the bat great today. It was a good feeling to get him to lead off like he's been doing all year in the first inning. Boy, it was great to see. All the guys on the team were extremely happy for him and for us to see him have that kind of game. Hopefully he can continue and start to roll the way Altuve can roll.

Q. I wanted to ask you, and I know it's not a mathematical must, but how important was it to win this game and avoid going to Philadelphia behind 0-2?

DUSTY BAKER: Well, it was almost a mathematical must, actually, because it's tough when you lose the first two games at home. But I've been on the other side of things too when we've won the first two games in the other team's park years ago and then they came back and beat us.

But it is good for the city, good for our fans, that they went home happy after last night because I just went to get coffee at a couple places -- at one place this morning and people were kind of sick about last night. So you like to have a positive attitude throughout the city, and that vibe radiates to us.

So it was great to win that first game.

Q. Can you talk about Framber and what you got from him today. I know you expect it, but just about his outing.

DUSTY BAKER: Well, you expect it, but you don't know. I mean, this guy has been as consistent as any pitcher that I've ever had throughout the course of the year, and he just continued to do the same thing during the playoffs. He gets big outs. He makes big pitches. Our team is extremely sharp usually behind him because they're alert, especially on the infield. You know you're going to get a lot of balls, and you got a great chance to turn a double play or two, which helps keep his pitch count relatively low and keep him in the ball game, because I think he had like 60-something pitches after 4, 68 pitches, whatever it was. And you start counting and you say, oh. That's why we were trying to hopefully take him into the 7th. He almost made it.

But he's been great. And Maldy has directed him through most of these victories. It was much needed for us.

Q. Montero dealt with a lot in that 8th inning. What did you see in his ability to get through all that? And how much thought did you give to getting a fresh arm in there?

DUSTY BAKER: Well, yeah, I had some thought. But you think about who is the matchups for the guys that are coming up that inning. We was hoping that he would get by, through Harper. And you're always, he's always on your radar when he's going to be up next.

We had a near miss of a long home run by the dangerous Schwarber. So, yeah, I mean we thought about it, but we just thought about who might be better in that situation than who we had in there already, as long as he wasn't tired or start throwing balls and stuff.

So that was a big 7th inning that he covered for us.

Q. What was the mood in the dugout after three doubles to open the game? Obviously things happening the way that they did last night, but I imagine that's a great way to get things started.

DUSTY BAKER: Well, it was. And I was pulling for a fourth, actually. Try to score as many runs as you can. Because you know Wheeler is one of the tougher guys in baseball.

That's the first time a lot of our guys have seen him. But we watch a lot of video and our hitting guys, coaching staff tries to get them as familiar as possible with who we're facing that day. Especially a new guy.

And it was great to get the fans into it right away. There's a lot of electricity in this building.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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