ST. LOUIS — Here are a few of Nationals manager Davey Johnson’s comments from his press conference before the team worked out at Busch Stadium in advance of the National League Division Series.
On Michael Morse’s recovery from a minor hamstring injury:
You know, Morse is doing fine. He came in the day after last day and he’s just had probably a little spasm in his hamstring, he’s good to go and work out. Everybody is in really good shape. You know, the roster, I think we are going to hold that off so nobody gets an edge on us. I told the guys all of the guys that were going to be activated for it. There were some tough decisions.
On how his approach this postseason compares to past ones:
Well, the thing that’s different about it is the preparation is a lot tougher with the new format with the wild‑card, because you start your throwing program to set up your pitching for whoever you’re going to play, and two clubs are totally different, Atlanta and St.Louis. It’s no different. I mean, the preparation that you have for a ballclub comes in 160 games in a regular season. You really don’t do anything different. I don’t want to act any different. It’s going to be business as usual. We’ve got no trick plays we’re running out there.
On Tyler Clippard being helped by recent rest:
He’s had a great year. He’s a helluva competitor and he was my closer for a long time. Storen is actually my closer. I really don’t like to say who is my closer because sometimes matchups may favor one or the other. But you know, it’s going to be business as usual, and the last week, there was a little bit of changing roles because of setting up with Clip and closing Storen.
On throwing left-handers against the Cardinals’ right-handed lineup:
Well, if you look at the records, right‑handers have just as much trouble hitting Gio as left‑handers. When he’s locating his fastball, and he’s hitting the low side of the plate, he’s got a devastating curveball, I don’t care if they have all right‑handers out there. He’s tough. And with Zimm, same way, pretty consistent both sides. So I mean, it’s really an easy choice. Gio would have hung me if I didn’t have him going first. Gio had one heck of a year. I think he was lowest hits per inning and most clubs stack their clubs with right‑handers. I admit St.Louis has some awfully good right‑handers in the middle of the lineup, but you have to make good pitches.
On the team’s mood during the flight to St. Louis:
This team is always relaxed when it’s together. Just got makeup off the chart. … They enjoy being around each other. Just fun to be around and they enjoy the game of baseball.