Here's a transcript of Manager Terry Francona's press conference following the Indians' 6-0 win over the Phillies on Wednesday night.
On seeing a different Bauer - Tonight, he walked the leadoff hitter in I think four innings, and I believe all those walks were against left handers. Saying that, when he got into some traffic out there, he made unbelievable pitches. He threw his fastball, he threw his off-speed, he attacked hitters when he had to with really good stuff.
On getting excited for Bauer’s potential - Very, when we’re looking to get excited. But that’s real stuff. I think what maybe goes under the radar is how much he competes, because he’s a quiet kid and he doesn’t say much. He really competes. I think that showed when there were runners on base.
On the importance of the command of his fastball -The more he understands that, and again with repetition, then it gets really exciting. Because then you’ll see some constituency.
On Raburn’s hitting – When you plug a guy in, whether it’s injury or double-header or whatever, and he gets this hot, that’s such an added bonus. You can never tell, you can’t flip a switch when a guy plays, but he’s been so hot. And we’ve been able to hit him all over the order. And he’s played well defensively. The catch he made tonight, it’s a lead-off walk, the game’s still close. That kinda changed things. It’s been huge for us.
On the bloop hits falling – We had a bunch tonight. Sometimes that goes in cycles. I think when you desperately need those to be hits, that’s when it’s probably more glaring. But when you’re hitting the ball and squaring ‘em up and you have some base runners and things like that, those things tend to happen more.
On the play against Cy Young winners – I don’t think what hardware they have in the past really goes into our approach. We respect who we’re facing but we’re trying to be better than them. There are certain pitchers you know, if they make a mistake you better hit it.
On the play with Kipnis at second – I probably had the worst look in the ballpark. But the guys who were watching it said it looked like he was out of the baseline. I have a horrible look from there.
On scoring first in a game – It’s a good way to play. When you score first and then score next, that’s a great recipe for winning. It’s a lot easier to play when you’re not fighting back. it doesn’t mean you can’t win. But it’s a really good way to play. If you have good speed, you can take an extra base, and if you make an out, it doesn’t cost as much.
On if he’s thought about Raburn’s fit into the lineup in the future – No, never. I think I have a responsibility to think through the rest of the game and where we’re gonna pitch and things like that. That wouldn’t be very productive.
On if he relishes coming off the bench – I think everybody would like to play every day. I think that’s why guys are good. But he’s taken this opportunity and made the most of it. It’ll serve him well down the road also, because there’s gonna be times when we have guys nicked up. That’s how the season goes. When you can plug a guy like an Aviles or a Raburn in there and not miss a beat, that’s really helpful.
On getting Raburn in the offseason – Funny, because when I first came here and got hired, Chris and I were talking that first day. I knew he had a rough year. I said, “If they take him off the roster…” Chris was like, “Yeah, I’m with ya.” So we called him right away. He got off to a really rough start last year and it kinda snowballed on him. He’s got a nice, short stroke. He looked to me like he could be a really good guy to come off the bench because he does keep his swing nice and short and compact.