May 24, 2013
Postgame Press Conference
Nebraska 7, Minnesota 4
Big Ten Baseball Tournament
Head Coach Darin Erstad
“We needed a big start out of our senior right-hander and he delivered, just fantastic. He hasn’t started in a long time. I was thinking if we could get four innings from him and go from there it would be fantastic. He almost got through the fifth, I’ll take that. He gave us a chance to win. Luke Bublitz, that was the best he’s thrown since he has been here, since I have been here. Guys found a way to get it done and we get to keep playing baseball.”
On the big inning…
“With a team playing a game before, we wanted to come out and step on it right away. Their pitcher had a lively fastball, especially up in the zone and we couldn’t get on top of that thing. We kept grinding out at-bats and we have had good success doing that. We executed some bunts and got some base hits.”
On pitching Hander instead of DeLeon…
“We tried to find a way to win the tournament. What I didn’t want to happen is have DeLeon warm up, get hot and we pop a six spot in the first inning, yet he goes out and throws six shutout innings. We were playing a team that has already gone nine innings, we hoped to catch one of their non-weekend starters. Now we have DeLeon, on a couple weeks rest, going against a one or two seed. I’ll take my chances there.”
Pitcher Ryan Hander
On starting today’s game…
“I found out this morning, I got real excited. I will do whatever I can to help the team. When I found out, I was just getting myself prepared, just execute, go out there and throw strikes. Put our team in the best position to win this baseball game.”
On starting, after relieving a lot lately…
“I don’t know if it ever goes off, every day before the game I play catch and work out my flat grounds. Starting or relieving my main thought is just to throw strikes and play it out-by-out, inning-by-inning.”
On his stuff today…
“My curveball was working well today. My fastball was alright.”
Second basemen Pat Kelly
On playing at home in Minnesota…
“It’s a lot of fun, going out there and playing. The main thing now is playing baseball.”
On his hitting today…
“They were starting me with fastballs and I saw it well. I went up there with the same approach I always do. Didn’t really think any different.”
Relief Pitcher Luke Bublitz
On what was working for him…
“Today, the biggest thing I was doing was throwing strikes. I have an issues with command and today I managed to throw my fastball for a strike.”
Head Coach John Anderson
“Long day, long day. Lots of emotion but proud of our kids. I thought they left it all out on the field. There has been eight games in the tournament, we have played four of them, played three in the last 24 hours. It is a six-team tournament that if you are in the losers bracket and if you are not one of the top two seeds, it takes a miracle to try and get back and win the thing.
"I have no disappointment. I told our team that they competed throughout the tournament and that we left it all on the field. It is a disappointed group. If we would have had Snelten or Crawford in the first five weeks of the season we might have been able to win a couple more games be in a different position that we are right now. We might have had a chance to keep playing but that is baseball. I have no regrets, this was a great group of people to coach, I enjoyed every single day.
"I thought young Dalton Sawyer for a freshman stood out there on the mound and threw an open plate for the most part when he competed. He is young yet, he threw the pick-off well, but I felt the game moved pretty fast for him and he was unable to slow it down. We had a base open there with Kelly at the plate, a lefty on deck with two outs I am not sure we are trying to throw that pitch in that situation we still had some wiggle room there.
"We had to leave Dalton out there, we had a lot of games to pitch yet if you want to stay in the tournament. You have to win the tournament to stay in the season so, we had to try and get as much out of him as we could because we have to find some pitches, but that factors into the decision. And then we bounced back and got a four spot which made the game interesting but we could not get it going again in the offense. I am just proud of our group, proud of the way they competed, they never gave up, never gave in. They should not have to walk out of here and hang their heads for any reason.”
Catcher Matt Halloran
On wanting to come back after being down 6-0…
“We just said in the dugout to just keep chipping away. We had a lot of game left, I think it was only the third inning when they put that number up. We still had six more at bats to put up six more runs. It is an elimination game and you can’t give in yet the season is on the line. Last year they put up a six spot, we came back and put up a seven spot a couple innings later. It is not over until it is over.”
On hitting the home run…
“I was really excited. During that inning we felt like we had a chance because we had some good energy about our offense. We felt we were going to come back.”
Rightfielder Kurt Schlangen
On the senior class being done…
“It is never easy for any group. Like fourteen John Anderson) said we left it all out on the field. In the middle inning we tried to get our toes running and rally around, we wanted to shut them down and keep chipping away and put runs up, but we came up a little bit short.”
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