May 24, 2023
Hoover, Alabama, USA
Hoover Metropolitan Stadium
Alabama Crimson Tide
Postgame Press Conference
Florida 7, Alabama 6
JASON JACKSON: I thought it was a really good ballgame by two really good teams. That's kind of what the postseason play is all about. That's what the SEC tournament is all about. That's what we all expect to see when we come here.
It's a tough loss. We took a lead into that last inning, and Alton has been great for us all year. You've got to give them some credit, they had some great at-bats.
But I thought it was a really good college baseball game, and I thought our guys fought hard, I thought their guys fought hard, and at the end of the day they got the big hit at the end.
Q. Luke, how were you feeling ahead of your start against LSU last month, and can you take us through the process of how a decision that you weren't going to pitch that day was made?
LUKE HOLMAN: I mean, I thought I was going to start the whole day and then I had a couple back issues, and I just didn't feel good enough to start that day.
Q. I'm sure that was one of the craziest games you've ever played in. How do you flush this out of your system and get ready for a 1:00 start tomorrow after a long game like this and an emotional loss like that?
TOMMY SEIDL: Yeah, you've just got to flush it, take what you can from it, learn from it. And then just hydrate, get sleep, and get ready to go tomorrow.
Q. How do you guys go from the high of your double and then when you watch that ball sail out, take us from the highest of highs to maybe the lowest of lows there?
TOMMY SEIDL: Baseball is a game of winning moments, and we won the moment in the top of the 9th, and they got us back in the bottom. It's just a matter of staying even keel as you can throughout those moments that will just help you win those moments in the future.
Q. Tommy, when that ball is going over your head in center, at what point do you know it's a home run, and what is that feeling like?
TOMMY SEIDL: Yeah, it's not a good feeling when you lose a game, especially on a walk-off home run. I guess as an outfielder you just see the ball off the bat, and it keeps going and keeps going, and then it's a home run. Basically when it got out is when I realized it was a home run.
Q. On your double, too, it looked like maybe a misjudgment. Did you know that was going to get past him at first? Take me through that moment.
TOMMY SEIDL: Yeah, you never know, especially at the Met. It's a huge park, plays big, so you really just never know how a ball is going to land. You just run out hard of the box and hope it gets down.
Q. Luke, you settled in well after the first inning, your first start of this tournament in the postseason. Talk us through how you felt as you went through the game.
LUKE HOLMAN: I think I settled in as the game went on. But rough start, hung a slider to Rivera and learned from that, 3-2, I shouldn't just throw one in there for him to hit. So I learned from it, and throughout the game, I just pitch by pitch got better.
Q. You scored those three runs in the 11th and you're feeling great and it looks like you're about to take down the top seed in a long game, and Moza does that, and now you're in the loser's bracket. What was the impossible message of going in there and saying we've got to play tomorrow and keep this thing going the rest of the week?
JASON JACKSON: You know, basically what I told them was, Hey, man, this hurts, and it's supposed to hurt. You invest that much into a game, and it was an emotional game and it was a very well-played game, but this was supposed to hurt. That's a kick in the gut. So it's okay to be pissed. You should be pissed.
But we are going to go back to the hotel, and we're going to eat, and we're going to be pissed off for a little while, and that's okay.
But when we wake up tomorrow, that score resets to 0-0, and we've got to bring it to the ballpark. We have to be ready to go. We have to be ready to bring it when we get here tomorrow.
Q. Going into tomorrow, what is the double elimination strategy compared to if you guys won that game with pitching, especially in extra innings? What are you going into tomorrow, everything you have?
JASON JACKSON: Yeah, we've still got several guys who haven't thrown yet, so we'll kind of take inventory of who's available and who's not and who feels good tomorrow when we get here.
Alton won't be available tomorrow. I would say he's not going to pitch tomorrow. But other than that, I think we should have plenty of guys ready to go, and we'll just go one game at a time.
Q. How much mental fortitude did it take from Moza, and how proud are you of him for getting out of that jam after making that error? A lot of players melt at that moment. What did you see from him?
JASON JACKSON: He's gotten better and better every week. He missed the first part of the year, rehabbing from an injury. And since he's been back, he's gotten better and better each time out.
And I think the more you go out there, the more you learn to handle those situations, and you kind of -- he's kind of been there done that now, and would have been really happy with his development and progress over the last three, four weeks. And he's become a guy that we really count on, along with some of those other guys out of the pen.
Big outing from him tonight for sure.
Q. Is the plan for Garrett to go tomorrow on the mound to start the game?
JASON JACKSON: Yeah, that's the plan. Yeah.
Q. What goes into the decision to leave Moza in to start the bottom of the 11th instead of going to Alton to start the inning?
JASON JACKSON: Yeah, we talked about it, and even if it was a one-run lead, we were going to leave him in to face Langford. Langford has got pretty big splits. He's done well against lefties.
A.D. threw 25 pitches the night before, so we wanted to keep his outing as short as we possibly could. So we were trying to steal an out right there, and not only steal an out, we thought it was the best matchup.
And so that was the plan all along, whether it was a one-run lead or a three-run lead, we were going to let him have Langford and then go to A.D. after that.
Q. I know it's fresh, but what's the prep for the rest of the night? Are you going to try to watch to see who loses? Auburn obviously will be a big one tomorrow. Do you guys care?
JASON JACKSON: Well, you have to figure out who you're going against, right, so you can kind of do some prep work and scouting report. We've played everybody during the year, so you have some good reports, but you want to know who you're playing and who they might pitch and who they have available.
So I'm sure we'll stay up and watch this game and get back to the hotel and get ready to eat and get cleaned up. And then, yeah, we'll probably watch that game so we're ready to go tomorrow.
Q. For most of the week, two biggest crowds were Alabama and Auburn fans here. Tomorrow at this stadium for elimination, what would tomorrow mean for that vibe?
JASON JACKSON: I think it would be packed here, wouldn't it? I think that's exactly what the Hoover Met would love to have.
But shoot, they've got a game tonight against Vanderbilt, and that's a great team, and Auburn is playing really well. So we'll see how it plays out. But whoever we're playing, we'll be ready to go.
Q. At a tournament like this, it's hard to look ahead, but obviously there's such a grind in this tournament, with the talent that you're seeing day in and day out and these times and the slots of games and obviously going on a long day so early in the tournament. How do you prepare for what's ahead as well when obviously the next step is looking at the NCAA tournament but also trying to make your way through here at the Met this week?
JASON JACKSON: Yeah, I think you just try to be smart about it, and we try to go one game at a time right now. We've got our pitching kind of lined up the way it's been, so we've got the next couple days if we can get through there, then we'll see who's available after that, but we should be good the next two days, and we'll take it from there.
But yeah, it is tough. Every single day you come to the park you're playing somebody that's probably ranked in the top 10 every time you come to the ballpark each day. But that's what this tournament is all about. That's why it's so great.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports