Oct. 14 Ned Yost pregame interview

THE MODERATOR: We'll get started. Who has the first question?

Q. Just got to ask you, how did you sleep last night?

NED YOST: Good. I slept great last night. I really did.

Q. Any reason for that or just relaxed?

NED YOST: Yeah, just relaxed. Felt good. Watched the ballgame, slept good.

Q. What starters are going to be in the bullpen? Who isn't, I guess, available tonight?

NED YOST: We'll have everybody down there. We'll have Ventura down there late in case we get into a bind, but pretty much everybody, all hands on deck tonight.

Q. Dave Eiland said maybe you're going to treat this a little differently with Johnny. How short is his leash?

NED YOST: Depend on how he's throwing, it's as simple as that. If he's throwing good, it's going to be along leash.

Q. Can Wade give you three?

NED YOST: I didn't hear you.

Q. Can Wade Davis throw three innings?

NED YOST: Three innings?

Q. Yeah.

NED YOST: (Laughter.) Is that a serious question?

Q. I heard both.

NED YOST: Yeah. I imagine he could. I'm not really planning on him throwing three innings, but I imagine he could.

Again, you kind of start with your basic plan. If Johnny can come out, be aggressive, stay on the attack, get us through six, then you got Madson, you got Herrera, you got Wade. You would like to use that scenario.

But we can use again Herrera for two, Madson for two, Wade for two, whatever we need to do. We have got Chris Young on five days' rest, we got Medlen on 11 days' rest. We got Danny on two days' rest who can -- Danny Duffy that can come in and pitch if needed.

So we have got a lot of different pieces down there that we could use.

Q. In the Postseason games you've managed, were you ever anything less than totally confident going into a game?

NED YOST: No. No. I always feel good about this group. Again, it's all about execution. If you go out and, especially a game like this, if you capitalize on opportunities when you can and execute, you have to execute pitches, you have to execute defensively, execute offensively, we're going to be in great shape.

They're both talented baseball teams. Both teams have seen these pitchers in the last week, so they have got an idea of what to expect. And I just think, when you go in and sense the confidence in that room, it's just a good feeling. So, you've got confidence in them and have had confidence in that group, even when they didn't have confidence in themselves.

So, yeah, it's a group that I don't ever look at the dark side, if you will. I don't even entertain those thoughts.

Q. The whole confidence thing, specifically with Cueto and a red-hot Colby Rasmus, the top of the lineup just being extraordinary throughout this series, what's that confidence in him specifically and how you think he's just sort of handling things today?

NED YOST: He's handling things well. He was very determined yesterday for this opportunity and wants to make the most of it, obviously. Because he knows the whole world's going to be watching. So, he's ready to go.

Again, it's just about executing your pitches. If he executes his pitches, because everybody has holes in a lineup and where you get in trouble is when you're not executing your pitches and you're missing your spots and not hitting those holes, but if you can execute pitches, Johnny's going to be great tonight.

Q. The intangibles, the experience maybe give your guys a bit of an edge? The majority of the team is back, they went through Game 7 of the World Series. Houston's younger by comparison.

NED YOST: No, it didn't give us an advantage last year, never going through it. So, they're extremely talented team, Houston is. Very, very talented. We knew coming into this series that this whole series was going to be a dogfight, and it has been. I don't expect anything less tonight.

So, the experience factor helps a little bit, but I thought that we gained all the experience we needed last year by winning the Wild Card game. And they've done that, too.

So, it's going to be a fun game. Going to be a fun night.

Q. What did McHugh do in the first game that made him effective?

NED YOST: Again, threw a lot of breaking balls. He keeps the ball down. Executes down in the zone. Changed speeds really well. We hit five or six balls right on the nose off him, just right at people. So, maybe we can find some more holes tonight.

Q. Is Johnny here yet?

NED YOST: I don't know. I've been in my office talking to reporters, so I don't know.

Q. So you're having a great day?

NED YOST: I'm having a great day, yeah. This is fun. Yeah.

THE MODERATOR: All right, thanks, Ned. Good luck tonight.

NED YOST: All right.