Blue Jays interim manager John Schneider spoke with the media after Sunday's win over the Boston Red Sox and discussed what caused Kevin Gausman to leave the game early.
- Hey, John, when Gausman came out there, was he dealing with a cut off of a blister, or what was going on?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: Yeah, kind of like just like a weird cut on his middle finger that happens to get flared up sometimes with his split. But I think if this was a playoff game or if it was earlier in the year, whatever it was, if circumstances were a little different, he would have kept going. But just trying to play a little bit safe.
- And do you think you'll have to do anything differently with that, or is this pretty standard going into the wild card series?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: Yeah, I think he should be fine. He's managed it before. He's managed it last year. I'm not too concerned about it at all.
- Whit for you guys in the last 10 days or so has kind of emerged as a pretty significant contributor. What are you liking from him, both at the plate and in the field, for that stretch?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: A lot. I mean, at the plate, his at-bats are tremendous, hitting for power as well, kind of just showing the player that he has been over the course of his career. Really heads up play today on the ball that deflected off Bo. But yeah, he's been exactly what we had hoped for. And I've said it before, for a guy that wasn't getting in there regularly to get a chance, he's been a huge spark for us.
- And then at this point for you guys, like outside looking in, it seems like you're in a bit of a weird spot not knowing what happens after Baltimore or how long you're going to be away. What is that like for you and for the team?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: It's crazy. You know, you got, like, seven suitcases packed, you feel like. But we're ready to deal with it however it shakes out. Excited that we're in this position.
And you got to keep trying to pile up the wins and hopefully get back here in front of these awesome fans to host the series. Don't want to take that for granted how much we appreciate playing here as opposed to other places like we have the last couple of years. And we want to be back here as much as we can, so you got to just take care of business.
- It became sort of an unanticipated bullpen day for you guys a little bit. What did you think of their performance beginning with Zach Pop?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: I thought Zach Pop was outstanding, nasty sinker, mixed in his slider. Their lineup today was a little bit different. And it kind of set up very well for him with the right-handers. Cimber being Adam Cimber. You know, Anthony with one bad pitch. And then [? Yimi ?] and Jordy doing their thing. So I can't say enough about what they did. Kind of spur of the moment. They were ready to roll. They were great.
- I guess it was useful that you did some of those pitching fielding drills the other day with Zach Pop there?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: We didn't practice that one. But I'm glad that it went into his glove. I think that's obviously one of those plays where you kind of just throw your glove up there and hopefully-- hope you catch it. And we were lucky enough that he got that one.
- We talked a little bit about Teoscar yesterday. He kept the [? role ?] going today. He's getting hot at the right time for you. What [? are ?] you [? seeing? ?]
JOHN SCHNEIDER: Yeah, that. I mean, I think pitch selection is key for him. And he's pretty much locked in right now. And you know, he's a guy that can change the complexion of a game with one swing. He did it again today twice. His at-bats have just been really, really good.
- Is it about the way he's feeling too? I mean, we know that he had the foot thing. He had the oblique earlier. But since you guys got to Philly, he has been just kind of ridiculous.
JOHN SCHNEIDER: Yeah. I mean, everyone's tired right now. But I think that he's physically feeling good. And I think that the time of year kind of gets everybody ready to play a little bit. And for him, he's been here for a few years. And it's pretty cool that he's heating up right now when these games really mean a lot.
- And just can you speak to the fact-- I don't know if you even know. It's the first time in franchise history that a Canadian got a win, and a Canadian got the save.
JOHN SCHNEIDER: I know. On Canadian soil, I believe. I think it happened in Milwaukee, I heard, with John Axford and somebody else. But that's pretty cool the fact that we've won 90 games in this division back-to-back years is pretty cool. This division is so tough. And to be here for that has been pretty special. I know we don't take that lightly. And looking forward to more obviously. But it is pretty cool to have Canadian guys get the win and the save here at the Rogers Center.
- John, this is a 16 and 3 season against the Red Sox, which really has a lot of weight in that race for you. Whether it's this weekend or the full season, have you seen something you like especially about how your team's played Boston?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: Yeah, we've played them well for whatever reason. We've swung the bats extremely well. I think our game plan against their really tough hitters has been good. And we've taken care of the baseball for the most part.
If you look back, I mean, I'm thinking back to Chappy's play that he had in Fenway, kind of a backhanded flip double play. We've made some really good plays. Tapia's inside-the-park grand slam. Things have kind of just been falling our way against a really good team. But I think it's also-- that's what our offense is capable of doing.
- Hey, John. You guys clinched before this series. And then to come in and kind of get the sweep, is this kind of obviously from the win perspective exactly what you would have wanted but from kind of the effort and the staying locked in what you wanted as well?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: Yeah, absolutely. I think it's whenever you're playing a division team, I think it kind of just motivates you a little bit. The circumstances that are right now, everyone is important. I always feel like it's two days after you clinch and celebrate, you're a little bit tired, if you will.
And it's a credit to them for coming out. Teo getting us on the board, and then kind of just putting some good at-bats together against Wacha. But it really shows a lot about how these guys are feeling right now and how excited they are to be part of this. And you know, it was a really good series.
- And then we've been talking about how Whit's kind of come around with the bat. But then he had kind of that funky play with Bo in the field. What have you seen from him defensively since he kind of got here?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: Kind of what he's been his whole career, steady and very versatile. You can put him anywhere really, outfield, second base, game or two at first base. It's been kind of a calming presence when you have a regular guy like [INAUDIBLE] go out. So I think it speaks a lot to the depth of our team and just speaks a lot to the skill set that he brings. So he's been vital to what we've been doing down the stretch.
- All right, thank you, everyone. Oh, we have one more. Rachel?
- I just wondered about Jordan at the end there. Did he give you a little bit of a scare, slipping in that first base?
JOHN SCHNEIDER: Yeah, weird play. I think it was more so when he hit the ground. You know, that's a tough play for a big, athletic dude to be over there on his back. So he was totally fine. We were just making sure he didn't roll his ankle or anything. It's just typical Canadian dude getting dirty and finishing it off.