On Teheran’s performance
“He wiggled out of a lot of jams. That’s probably the main reason we didn’t run him back out there in the seventh. I think he had one clean inning. Everything else, God, I think he had six left on the first three innings, two an inning. Lot of stressful innings, and that’s one of the reasons we didn’t want to run him back out there in the seventh.
“It’s hard to hold a two-run lead in the major leagues, and we did it. Our bullpen did a terrific job. Coming off last night, kind of on vapors. That’s all we had today, what we used there. And they did a nice job. We scored early, and we couldn’t get anything else off Gio the rest of the (game).”
Each of first three innings, Nats had two on with none out and Teheran gave up no runs
“He wiggled out of them. He kept pitching, and I think Gerald did a nice job keeping him out of a big innings. We made some nice plays defensively. Gattis made a nice play going towards the line, and Terdo. Pauly almost made one there in the ninth inning. We did a nice job. It was a good homestand. We always talk about winning series, and we did. We won three series at home. So enjoy the off day tomorrow and then we go on the road.”
On Laird throwing out runner for double play on strikeout
“That was big. First and third, one out, strike’ em out, throw ‘em out. That was a big out.”
On the ‘B squad’ getting a win
“It was good to get Gattis some at-bats, to get Terdo some at-bats, good for Gos (Gosselin) to get his first base hits in the major leagues. Lot of good things.”
On Teheran’s maturity since last year, shown in those tight situations getting out of trouble
“He keeps pitching. That’s a good trait to have. He’s maturing in the right direction.”
What were you think when they put two on with none out for third straight inning, in the third?
“I’m thinking he’s right at 60 pitches for three innings, and you know your bullpen is spent. I’m going, man oh man. But he did a nice job getting us through six, and once we got through six we said, OK, we’ve got a shot here with the guys we have (available).”
On getting through a game without any more HBP controversy or ejections, etc.
“Yeah, it’s over with. Two boys playing in the schoolyard. It’s over with. I think both teams have respect for each other, obviouisly. There’s a lot of good players on that club, and we’ve got a lot of good players. I don’t see anything going on the rest of the time.”
On Kimbrel vs. Harper matchup at end, two of best young talents in majors
“I totally agree. We got the best of it today, but Harper’s did a lot of damage in those situations, and I’m sure before both of those guys’ careers are over, they’re going to have that type of matchup a lot.”
On Teheran’s performance
“He got himself into some trouble early in the game, but he didn’t panic. He made pitches and was able to work out of it and keep throwing zeroes up there. It was fun to work with him today, because I didn’t think he had his ‘A’ stuff but he was able to go six innings.”
“Him having the electric stuff that he has, he’s able to work through (situations) like that. He didn’t have his best stuff today – he was struggling with that slider, and his change-up wasn’t very good. But he kept making pitches when he needed to. He knew we needed him to go deeper in the game, and he was able to go six innings. I’m sure he probably could have went out there and got us another inning, but skipper thought that was enough and was able to give it over to the bullpen.”
On throwing out Werth trying to steal second to complete inning-ending double play in 7th
“I was able to get a good grip and make a good throw, and (the play) kind of gave us momentum.”
On Teheran maintaining his performance this late in the season
“It’s good to see a young guy do that. But the kid works hard, he’s in there, he’s learning, he watches and asks questions when he’s not starting. And in catching him in spring training, I knew he had the stuff to get it done. It was just a matter of him maturing and wanting it. He shows all of us that he wants to go out there and compete every time, and he’s not scared. I feel like we have a really good chance to win with him on the mound, every time.”
On the series
“Fun. This is what baseball is all about. It’s late August, we’ve gone on a run, obviously they’re disappointed and they want to come in here and they need to sweep series now. We won the series and extended our lead, so it’s fun. That’s what baseball is all about, that’s what you prepare for in the offseason. It isn’t going to get any easier. We’ve got to go one game at a time, and hopefully that puts us in October.”
On winning with the ‘bomb squad’ backups
“It’s fun to go out there. I had a blast out there today, seeing some of the young guys get an opportunity. It’s good baseball when you can give your starters a day off like this and go out and win a ballgame. The most important thing was, Julio pitched a really good game and gave us a chance to win. We were able to scrape a couple of runs, and gave it to that powerful bullpen.”
On working out of jams in first three innings
“Yeah, I know. Those three innings, I know I got in trouble, but I just was trying to think, they can’t score, so whatever I can do to get out of that inning, and those three innings.”
Were you confident you could?
“Yeah, my confidence, whenever I get in trouble like that I just get up, that’s the confidence that I have.”
On trying to go deep to rest bullpen
“We had a long game last night and I was trying to go the longest I can. That’s what I say to the bullpen, ‘Sorry, but I did my best.’”
Nervous at all pitching inside, after what happened last time when you hit Harper?
“I wasn’t thinking about that. I know what happened the last time, but I was just trying to concentrate on this game and just make pitches, whether they were inside or outside.”
On Laird helping him
“I work good with him. I have the confidence, every time I get in trouble, we just try to find the way to get out.”
How do you feel this late in the season, with innings getting close to your personal high?
“No, I don’t feel (tired). I’m just trying to get ready to pitch every five days, and that’s what I’m doing.”
That how you imagined your first major league hit would be (the bunt single)?
(Laughs) Not quite. I think as a kid I was thinking more like a homer or something. But I’ll take the bunt single.”
Then you had to go get another hit that wasn’t a bunt
“Exactly. All the guys in the dugout were giving me a hard time, saying they got real hits for their first hit. So I had to come out and get one the next at-bat.”
On winning the series, his first games with the team
“I was awesome. I was just happy to help, to contribute. I figured I might be in the lineup with the late night last night. I was pretty fired up when I saw my name in the lineup, and I just wanted to do something to help us win.”
On coming in late in game
“I’d have rather played, started the game. But being smart about it, rest is good, especially after last night. We’ve worked hard enough to get an opportunity where rest can happen.”
On winning a long, rain-delayed, chippy-at-times series
“It’s good to win series right now for us in general. We’ve got to beat teams in our division to keep the lead where we like it, and we’ve also got to keep winning games for home-field advantage.”
On winning the series
“It’s nice. It’s great, actually. Those guys – it’s not an easy win, I’ll tell you that, against that ballclub over there. (Werth) is unbelievable right now. He’s absolutely on fire. Great team, great pitching staff. You saw it today, Gio was amazing. So it’s huge for us to go in and just try to continue what we’ve been doing all year.”
On Teheran getting out of jams early
“That’s the thing about our pitching staff, when they don’t have their great stuff they go out there and battle. They try to find what they do have. He pounded the zone, he threw his curveball for strikes and for balls when he needed to. The kid’s growing up to be a pretty good pitcher.”