Q. No calling of the ball?
JOE MADDON: No, I was not told that. I was told he saw something out of the corner of his eye and he backed off. Very unfortunate.
Q. Can you talk about Jon Lester's performance.
JOE MADDON: He's gotten better. He had struggles in the recent past with command issues with his fastball, but that's not the case right now. He's throwing his fastball where he wants to, the cutter's outstanding. He just had a really good fastball. He came out there on 97. I was hoping that would be pretty much adrenaline wear off and become more the pedestrian version, but that never happened.
Q. John Farrell yesterday was telling about how these series came down to little things like defensive plays. How important was that?
JOE MADDON: Yeah, we didn't play our best game tonight. Unfortunately it was not one of those one and done kind of games. We've been playing very well. We've not been making any mistakes. We made a bunch tonight, whether that or covering first base and not looking home or missing a strike 3.
Matty was not bad. He was actually pretty good tonight. It was just an unfortunate inning. With a more normal inning, he could have pitched deep into the game. Everything was good. We just kind of messed it up in that inning. But mistakes will kill you. We're normally not the team that makes those kind of mistakes. We did tonight.
But I've also learned one other thing, or main thing regarding baseball: 24 hours can make a huge difference. That's just one game, baby. That's just one. We'll be back tomorrow, I promise you. We'll be ready to play. We will not be affected mentally by tonight's game. We'll be ready to play.
So it happens once in a while. Normally when it happens during the regular season, I just say throw that one in the garbage can. And being that's the first of five, let's do the same thing now.
Q. Following up on Matt, did the game speed up on him? He was pitching so well.
JOE MADDON: Honestly, no, I thought he was fine. He got six outs in that inning. Six legitimate outs he had to get to get through that inning. He was, again, he missed a pop up or fly ball. We struck somebody out. Bouncer on the right side. He was throwing the ball well. There was no he gave up a couple of fly balls that hit the wall, and that was about it. I never saw him as being in trouble.
Like I said, he had really good stuff tonight. He could have pitched really deep in that game if we had done better in that inning, just playing normal defense.
Q. Do you have any issues with the Red Sox putting runners in motion up big late in the game?
JOE MADDON: No, I don't. That's their prerogative. I've never been one to use that term "embarrassed". If we are, it's our fault. You look for the same opportunities, for them to arise, for you to do the same thing in return, if you can.
But I don't play that game. I don't believe in that stuff. I know that's something that was written, I think, in 19 ought eight, and it's supposed to be adhered to the rest of your life. And part of it is, it is a different game, especially in this ballpark. Back in the day it took six or seven or eight singles in a row to score three or four runs. There were no homers. Today's ballgame there's a lot more homers and you've got the ability to score quickly in this ballpark. So I'm not of that ilk.
Q. Just want to clear up, you're not of the ilk that you wouldn't run or you don't get upset?
JOE MADDON: The old school rules that were written when singles were the norm and homers were not there's a lot of the game that people get upset about, and part of it is the phrase that "They are trying to embarrass us." If they did, that was our fault. Entirely our fault. If you get embarrassed in the game, I blame it on me, us. The accountability lies with the Rays, not the Red Sox doing their job. The object of the game is to score runs, and that's what they were doing.
Again, I think a lot of those old school rules that were written were written based on the type of offense that was played back in the day. And I don't necessarily agree with all of them.
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