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October 16, 2013

Carl Crawford

Adrian Gonzalez


Dodgers – 6
Cardinals – 4

Q.  Adrian, as they say in baseball, you hang around long enough you see stuff you've never seen before.  Could you just take us through the two home runs you hit.  And then the thing I've never seen before, I think those were Mickey Mouse ears after the first one?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  The first home run, I know Kelly is an aggressive pitcher, so I was just trying to look for a fastball.  I got to 2‑0.  Threw me a fastball 2‑0 and I kind of over swung a little bit.  So I just told myself to try to stay short and he threw me another one on the other half and I was able to get to it.
The Mickey Mouse ears, I was just having fun with the comment that was made earlier.  Nothing against them or anything.  It was just to have fun.
Then the other home run, I was just ‑‑ I've always struggled against Axford, so I just told myself to look for something middle and go after it, and I just ran into a curveball.  I was able to get it in the air; and luckily, thank God, it got out.

Q.  What is it about this team that allows you to be so resilient?  You could have your back completely against the wall like you did today and you come out and find a way to win; and who knows what's going to happen over the weekend, but what is it about this Dodger team?
CARL CRAWFORD:  Well, we know we have a good team.  We know what we have in the clubhouse.  We believe in ourselves.  We trust one another.  To be honest with you, I just think guys weren't ready to lose today.  We have to take it one game at a time.
Tomorrow is the next step for us, and we just believe that if we take that approach we can win.  Hopefully come back and get to the World Series.
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Just like Carl said, we believe in ourselves.  We've been in a tough situation in late June.  Very similar to where we could have easily folded the season and not be in this situation.  But we knew that we have a team that can bounce back and do some pretty incredible things out there.  Just a talented group of guys.
We've got a bunch of guys that have been in this atmosphere before and won a lot of World Series or been to the World Series.  We just lean off of them and take their leadership and their direction and just keep playing hard every day.

Q.  How important was it for you to have the support of the people and have accomplished two home runs and one single?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  LA fans have given us incredible support all year, and having them behind us was huge.  It gave us a lift, and we definitely weren't going to go down on our home field.  The importance of hitting two home runs, to me, it's just about winning.  It's not about me.  It's about the team.

Q.  In your first answer, you mentioned having fun.  Is this the most fun you've had in baseball personally?  And what is it about this group that makes it that way for you?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Yeah, you're in the playoffs.  You've got to have fun.  If you're not having fun in the playoffs, then you don't deserve to be here.  Just enjoying every moment of it.  Preparing and leaving it all up to God.  Just really enjoying it, you know, and having fun.  I mean, to me, if you can't have fun out there in these situations, then you shouldn't be out there.

Q.  From the back flip to the Mickey Mouse ears, how much emotion was behind that for you?  Are you concerned that the Cardinals will take that the wrong way?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  I don't see it that way.  I think you guys are building it up more than anything.  I think it just gave us the lead and there is no emotion.  It's just having fun.

Q.  Carl, anything you can point to for this nice stretch you've been on the whole postseason?  The Braves series first and then this one.  It seemed to sort of start the last week of the season.  Did anything in particular happen there?  And lastly, are you watching the Red Sox at all in the playoffs?
CARL CRAWFORD:  Well, I just started feeling better towards the end of the year.  Luckily the body felt good, the swing started to feel better, so that enabled me to look for some pitches to drive.  Just kind of found the stroke that I'm comfortable with, and it's been working for me.  As far as the Red Sox, I'm watching both teams play.  Monitoring them real closely.
I have to worry about the Cardinals right now though.  I can't real really worry about what's going on in the other games.  I mean, I watch them, but the Cardinals have my main focus.

Q.  How important for you guys is victory, and how will you face off the next game?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  The victory is incredibly important, because if not, we're eliminated.  That goes without saying.  Our focus for Game 6 is to score runs for Kershaw and let him do his thing.  So if we can give Kershaw some run support, we're pretty confident.

Q.  You've had success against Kelly in the past.  I know it's been nine at‑bats against him, but you've had a lot of success against him.  What kind of feeling does that give you going up against him in a playoff situation?  Is nine at‑bats enough to build confidence against a pitcher?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Yeah, there are just certain match‑ups that you can't explain it.  You just see the ball well out of his hand.  It just definitely gives you confidence going into the game just knowing that you're looking for your pitch.  But he's a great pitcher.  I still have to execute my swing.  I still have to execute my game plan.  If he executes, he's going to get me out.  I don't care how much confidence you have.  Pitching dominates hitting.  But if I can execute my game plan, I'm confident.

Q.  Don was saying‑‑ kind of got a feeling that typically you're very serious, very focused on the game, but you may actually be having a little more outward fun right now than you've had most of the time.  Are you having more fun right now?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Absolutely.  Like I said, we're in the League Championship Series here.  Just trying to have fun, enjoy it and just not try to force anything.  Just let the game happen.  When I'm at the plate, obviously I'm serious.  I'm trying to execute my game plan.  But other than that, I'm just having fun.

Q.  Until this year, you've, I'm sure, read about Zack Greinke and heard about him and now you're on his team.  What have you learned about Greinke now that you're teammates with him?
CARL CRAWFORD:  I didn't realize how much of an athlete he is.  He moves well.  I faced him so I knew how much of a good pitcher he was, but he prepares well and he's real focused, a really smart guy.  He's a bulldog when he takes the mound.  That's the type of guy you want to play behind.
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Yeah, I mean, he's one of the best competitors I've been with.  One of the smartest pitchers I've been with.  He doesn't get rattled.  He knows what he's doing.  He stays composed.  Even in that first inning, bases loaded, no outs.  He just knew if he kept making his pitches he was going to get out of it, and he did.  That just shows that he's got the whole package.

Q.  For both of you guys, is this the perfect example of how baseball's such a crazy game?  No home runs the whole series, and then, boom, it's Home Run Derby today?  Then if I told you in spring training you had Kershaw and Ryu going in the last two, would you take it?
CARL CRAWFORD:  I'd take it.  It just goes to show how baseball is.  One day you can be on and one day you can be off.  The pitching has been dominating this series, and nobody's been hitting home runs.  Today we just seemed to find the stroke for the home run.  I don't really know why that is, but we'll take it.  Hopefully we can continue to swing the bats like that.
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Yeah, it is a crazy game.  Can't predict anything, that's for sure.  But, yeah, I'd definitely take Kershaw and Ryu the final two games of this series, absolutely.

Q.  (Question in Spanish)?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  (Answer in Spanish).

Q.  You kind of set off an internet explosion during the game when you made that ears gesture going into the dugout.  Are the ears retired now, or could they come back out during the series?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  I'm going to retire them so they're not talked about once again.  It's just something that doesn't need to be talked about.  It was just for fun, like I said.  I don't need it to get out of hand here because it shouldn't be.

Q.  Carl, are you disappointed to hear the ears are going to be retired now?
CARL CRAWFORD:  Once you start it, you've got to keep going (laughing).  I'm pretty sure it rubbed them the wrong way and they're going to use that as some kind of fuel, so you might as well keep doing it, Adrian.
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Hey, if Carl wants them.  It's for him, not for anybody else (laughing).

Q.  (Question in Spanish)?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  (Answer in Spanish).

Q.  You've both been on teams with much greater payroll restrictions and owners who were not willing to do nearly as much as the Dodgers have done here.  I'm just curious what the practical effect has been on your clubhouse?  The day‑to‑day effect, and if the Dodgers hadn't brought both of you over along with Greinke that you guys wouldn't be playing at this point in the season?
CARL CRAWFORD:  It's nice to be with an organization that's willing to do whatever it takes to win, and that is the situation we're in right now.  It's good for us because we always know that probably if we need something, those guys are probably going to get it for us.
As far as them being here without us, I'm pretty sure they probably would have went and got somebody that could help them get there with the money they have.
But we're just fortunate enough to be on this team.  We've been fortunate enough to be able to contribute and to help being in this situation.  That's really all you can ask for.
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Like Carl said, they're an ownership group that was going to stop at no lengths to get a winning team on the field.  We're just grateful to be here and to be with this organization at this time.  It's incredible what our ownership group is doing.

Q.  (Question in Spanish)?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  (Answer in Spanish).

Q.  Kershaw is obviously one of the best pitchers in baseball‑‑
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  Not one of the best.  The best.

Q.  Got it.  Wacha has had a good postseason.  How would you guys assess that match‑up, and what kind of adjustments do you plan to making facing him?
ADRIAN GONZALEZ:  From an offensive standpoint, he's a guy I never faced before Game 2; and he's a great pitcher.  He's got great stuff, great changeup, great fastball.  But now that we've faced him and we can have an idea how he's going to attack us, we can make our adjustments and feel more confident definitely seeing him a second time.
With Kershaw, we're fully comfortable he's going to do the same job he did in Game 2.  All we have to do is score for him.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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