Fred Warner flipped his body sideways as he shuffled and spied Cam Newton. Then, in a flash, Warner coyly retreated into coverage, and, voila, the 49ers’ star linebacker came through with a shoe-string interception. At that point, the 49ers lead just 10-3, and, at that point, the New England Patriots showed just how little a…49ers 33, Patriots 6: Jeff Wilson scores thrice before injury, Fred Warner leads dominant defense — Times-Standard
There are a lot of reasons to be skeptical of this rumor.Are the Golden State Warriors interested in signing Jeremy Lin? — ProBasketballTalk | NBC Sports
Pat Riley clarified the comments he made during an interview with the Miami Herald in which he appeared to add an asterisk to this season’s NBA title. “The asterisk is next to the Heat’s name, not the Lakers. Their title is legitimate. Our loss has an asterisk (next) to it. The Lakers were the better […]Pat Riley Clears Up Asterisk Comment: Lakers Title ‘Is Legitimate’ — Portal4News
The emotional hounds have been released long ago. The unwritten celebration penalties have been rescinded. Harold Reynolds, of the MLB Network and baseball’s Dead Pan era, says these whole playoffs have been “like a high school baseball tournament.” That, today, is a compliment, and on Saturday night Brett Phillips turned the aftermath of Game 4…Brett Phillips sent Tampa Bay’s hearts racing, including his own, at the end of Game 4 — Whittier Daily News
TAMPA BAY RAYS (2-2) vs. LOS ANGELES DODGERS (2-2)
RH Tyler Glasnow (2-2, 6.08) vs. LH Clayton Kershaw (3-1, 2.88)
Sunday, October 25, 2020 First Pitch: 8:08 p.m. Location: Globe Life Field TV: FOX Radio: ESPN Radio, WDAE 95.3 FM, WMGG 96.1 FM (Sp.)
INSTANT CLASSIC—Last night the Rays won a postseason game in walkoff fashion for the third time in club history, following Game 3 of the 2013
ALDS vs. BOS (José Lobaton homer) and Game 2 of the 2008 ALCS vs.
BOS (B.J. Upton sacrifice fly)…Seminole HS product Brett Phillips—who,
as a 2-year-old in 1996, attended the first Rays Fan Fest at Tropicana Field
with his grandma—delivered a 2-strike, 2-out game-tying single to score
Kevin Kiermaier in his first at-bat since Oct 7…he advanced to second on
an error by CF Chris Taylor, and Randy Arozarena scored the game-winning run on a second error on the play, a missed catch by C Will Smith.
– It was the fifth game in World Series history to end on a walk-off
error, and the first to end with two on the same play…the last team
to win on a walk-off error was the Cardinals in Game 3 of the 2013
World Series vs. BOS on a Will Middlebrooks obstruction call…
it was the first World Series game to end on a fielding error since
the Mets won Game 6 of the 1986 World Series vs. BOS (Bill Buckner error)…the only other World Series walk-off errors: Mets won
Game 4 of the 1969 World Series vs. BAL on an E1 and the Boston
Braves won Game 3 of the 1914 World Series vs. PHI-AL on an E1.
– Last night the Rays became the fifth team in World Series history
to record a walk-off win with the team trailing and the third to do
so when down to their final out…see chart below for play details.
– Last night was the 61st walk-off in World Series history and first
since the Dodgers won Game 3 of the 2018 World Series vs. BOS
(Max Muncy homer)…according to ESPN Stats & Info, the Rays became the first team to win a World Series game they trailed entering the bottom of the 9th inning since the Royals in Game 1 of
the 2015 World Series vs. NYM (trailed 4-3, won 5-4 in 14 innings),
and the first team to win a 9-inning World Series game they trailed
entering the bottom of the 9th inning since the D-backs in Game 7
of the 2001 World Series vs. NYY (Luis Gonzalez walk-off single).
– On a night when Dan Johnson—who hit a game-tying homer with
the Rays down to their final strike in an eventual 8-7, walk-off win
in “Game 162” on Sep 28, 2011—threw the ceremonial first pitch, the
Rays won on a walk-off, 8-7, after being down to their final strike.
– The Rays have four comeback wins this postseason after an AL-most 20 come-from-behind wins during the regular season.
BY THE NUMBERS—This is the 47th time in World Series history the Fall
Classic has been tied 2-2, including the third time in the last four seasons
(2019, 2017) and fifth time in the last 10 seasons…of the previous 46 times
a World Series has been 2-2, the winner of Game 5 has gone on to win it
all 30 times (65.2 pct.) but only six times in the last 14 occasions…the Game
5 winner of any best-of-seven series (not just the World Series) tied 2-2
has gone on to win the series 43 of 62 times (69.4 pct.)…this is the fourth
time in franchise history that the Rays have been tied 2-2 in a postseason
series but the previous three were all best-of-five: 2020 Division Series
vs. NYY, 2019 Division Series vs. HOU and 2010 Division Series vs. TEX.
– According to ESPN Stats & Info, last night was the 14th game in
World Series history to feature at least three lead changes but the
first with three in the 6th inning (or later)…the first lead change of
the entire series came in the bottom of the 6th, then the Dodgers
went ahead in the top of the 7th before the Rays won it in the 9th.
– According to the Elias Sports Bureau, last night was the first game
in postseason history with runs scored in eight consecutive half innings…the previous high was six straight half-innings in Game 3 of the 1947 World Series, a 9-8 Dodgers win over the Yankees.
– Kevin Cash used 21 players in last night’s game, tying the 1961 Reds
and 1947 Yankees for the most in a 9-inning World Series game.
– Last night the Rays became the first team to win a 9-inning World
Series game when allowing 15+ hits since the Brewers yielded
15 hits in a 6-4 win in Game 5 of the 1982 World Series vs. STL.
POWER BALL—In Game 4, the Rays hit 4 HR to tie the franchise record
for a postseason game (5th time), and it was the first time they did that in
a World Series game…their first 6 runs in last night’s game came on homers; their last 2 runs were a result of a broken-bat single, walk, line drive
single and two Dodgers errors…the Rays have hit 4 HR in four of their last
24 postseason games after doing that once in the club’s first 30 postseason
games…according to Stats LLC, the Rays became the first team in major league
history to homer in four consecutive innings of a single postseason game.
– The Rays have hit 33 HR this postseason, the most in a single
postseason in major league history (see chart)…the Rays have hit
multiple homers in 11 of their 18 postseason games…the Rays have
increased their HR/G from 1.33 in the regular season to 1.83 in the
postseason, but their R/G has dropped from 4.82 to 4.22…68.4 pct.
(52 of 76) of the Rays runs this postseason have come on home
runs, compared to 41.5 pct. (120 of 289) in the regular season.
THE GREAT RANDINO—In Game 4, Randy Arozarena singled in the 1st inning, homered in the 4th, singled in the 6th and walked and scored the game-winning run in the 9th…the homer was his ninth of the postseason, setting a major league record for a single postseason and tying Evan Longoria
for the most in Rays postseason history all-time…all 16 HR with the Rays have
come since Sep 2, the most in a season (reg+post) in major league history for a
player who had none prior to September…according to ESPN Stats & Info,
his 8.11 AB/HR ratio in his postseason career is the best all-time (min. 70 AB)
ahead of Babe Ruth (8.60)…last night was his fifth 3-hit game of the postseason, passing HOU Jose Altuve in 2017, STL Albert Pujols in 2004, SEA Edgar Martinez in 1995 and SEA Jay Buhner
in 1995 for the most in a single postseason…strangely, while Arozarena is batting .377 (26-for-69) this postseason, he is hitless in 6 AB with RISP.
HOW NOW BROWN LOWE—In Game 4, Brandon Lowe hit a go-ahead, 3-run
homer in the 6th—the first in Rays World Series history with 2 runners
(or more) on base…he has 3 HR this series, tied with SF Jeff Kent in 2002
and LAD Davey Lopes in 1978 for the 2nd-most as a second baseman
(while playing the position) in a single World Series behind PHI Chase
Utley (5) in 2009…he has 3 HR in his last 13 AB, after 1 HR in his first 56
AB of the postseason…his 6 RBI this series have all come on homers (solo,
2-run, 3-run)…his 6 RBI are tied with HOU Jose Altuve in 2017 for the
most in a single World Series by a second baseman in the last 11 years.
THE OUTLAW—With his 7th-inning homer in Game 4, Kevin Kiermaier
became the sixth player all-time to hit a game-tying homer in the World
Series out of the No. 9 spot in the batting order, first since MIN Chili Davis
in Game 3 of the 1991 Fall Classic at ATL…Rays No. 9 hitters have 5 HR
this postseason, breaking a tie with the 2018 Red Sox, 2016 Cubs, 2014
Royals and 2002 Angels for most in a single postseason in ML history.
LEFTOVERS—Combining regular season and postseason, 43 of the club’s
78 games (55.1 pct.) have been decided by 2 runs (or fewer)…the Rays are
31-12 (.721) in them, going 8-2 in the postseason after a major-league-best
23-10 (.697) in the regular season…the Rays are 17-7 (.708) in 1-run games:
3-2 this postseason after a majors-best 14-5 (.737) in the regular season.
– The Rays have played six consecutive errorless games and have
made only 1 error in their last 12 games…the Rays have a .994 fielding pct. in the postseason, totaling 4 errors in their 18 games.
– Sixteen of the 25 runs allowed by the Rays in the World Series have
come with 2 outs, including nine with both 2 outs and 2 strikes.
– The Rays have allowed 30 HR, most all-time for a single postseason…the Rays have allowed multiple homers in seven of their last 9
games and at least 1 HR in 16 of their last 17 games…the Rays have
allowed six 1st-inning homers, tied for 2nd-most in a postseason.
– Reg+post, the Rays are 32-7 when scoring first, 40-8 when scoring
4+ runs and 38-1, 34-0, 41-0 when leading after 6/7/8 innings.
Sorry Pat, but injuries are just part of the game.Pat Riley says Lakers’ title has asterisk due to Miami injuries — ProBasketballTalk | NBC Sports
The NBA salary cap is expected to decline “anywhere between $3 million and $12 million” for next season, sources told of the San Francisco Chronicle. The league reportedly missed its revenue projections by $1.5 billion due to a combination of the shutdown, cancellation of games, and finishing the season without fans. It was reported on Friday […]Salary Cap Could Decline ‘Between $3 Million And $12 Million’ Next Season — Portal4News
BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)–State Senator Tim Kennedy wants to bring professional basketball, albeit temporarily. Kennedy sent a letter to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Toronto Raptors President Masai Ujiri Suggesting KeyBank Center as a home for the Raptors if the US Candian border remains close. You might remember, cross-border restrictions forced the Blue Jays to move […]Senator Tim Kennedy wants to host the Raptors at KeyBank Center if border remains closed — News 4 Buffalo
“We’ve had no conversations about him not being here and we’ve been planning for the future with him.”J.B. Bickerstaff on Andre Drummond: ‘We’ve been planning for the future with him’ — ProBasketballTalk | NBC Sports
A report by Rebecca Clancy for The Times of London. Lewis Hamilton battled a poor start and “excruciating pain” to claim victory at the Portugal Grand Prix to become the most successful race winner in Formula One history. Yesterday’s victory in the Algarve was the 35-year-old’s 92nd of his career and came only two weeks […]Peerless Lewis Hamilton surpasses Schumacher record in style — Repeating Islands
The 116th World Series
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Tampa Bay Rays
Saturday, October 24, 2020
World Series Game Four – Postgame Notes
Globe Life Field, Arlington, Texas
TAMPA BAY RAYS 8, LOS ANGELES DODGERS 7 (SERIES TIED, 2-2)
First Pitch: 7:09 p.m. Gametime Temperature: 57 degrees Tonight’s Attendance: 11,441 Time of Game: 4:10
LA DODGERS IP H R ER BB-I SO HR WP BF Pitches/Strikes
Julio Urías 4.2 4 2 2 1-0 9 2 1 18 80/56
Blake Treinen 0.2 1 2 2 1-0 1 0 0 4 16/10
Pedro Báez 1.2 2 2 2 1-0 2 2 0 7 26/15
Adam Kolarek 0.2 0 0 0 1-0 1 0 0 3 9/5
Brusdar Graterol 0.1 1 0 0 0-0 0 0 0 2 7/3
Kenley Jansen (L) 0.2 2 2 2 1-0 1 0 0 5 21/12
TAMPA BAY IP H R ER BB-I SO HR WP BF Pitches/Strikes
Ryan Yarbrough 3.1 5 2 2 1-0 1 2 0 16 69/40
Ryan Thompson 0.2 0 0 0 0-0 1 0 0 2 5/4
Pete Fairbanks 1.0 2 1 1 0-0 1 0 1 4 12/8
Diego Castillo 1.0 1 1 1 2-0 1 0 0 6 26/13
Aaron Loup 0.1 2 2 2 0-0 1 0 0 3 11/9
Nick Anderson 1.1 3 1 1 1-1 1 0 0 7 23/15
John Curtiss 1.1 2 0 0 0-0 0 0 0 6 14/10
THE FALL CLASSIC AT 2-2
• With the Rays win tonight, this marks the 47th time in World
Series history that the series has been tied at two games
apiece, the third year over a four-year span (2017, 2019),
and the fifth time in 10 years (also 2011 and 2013).
• Of the previous 46 times that a World Series is tied,
2-2, the winner of Game Five has gone on to win the
series 30 times (65.2%), including six times in the last 14
occasions. Those were the Yankees in 1996, the Marlins
in 1997 and 2003, the Red Sox in 2013, the Giants in
2014 and the Astros in 2017. The seven teams to lose
the Series in that span after winning Game Five all lost
the series in seven games, including: Brewers in 1982;
Red Sox in 1986; Cardinals in 1987; Braves in 1991;
Yankees in 2001; Giants in 2002; Rangers in 2011; and
the Nationals in 2019.
RAYS AT 2-2
• This is the fourth time in franchise history that the Rays
have been tied 2-2 in a Postseason series, previously
doing so in this year’s ALDS against the Yankees, the
2019 ALDS against the Astros and the 2010 ALDS againt
the Rangers. Tampa Bay went on to lose both series. It
is the first time to occur in a best-of-seven Postseason
DODGERS AT 2-2
• This is the 15th time since 1900 that the Dodgers have
been tied at two games apiece in any best-of-seven
Postseason series, most recently in the 2018 NLCS in
which they went on to defeat the Brewers. Overall, the
Dodgers went on to win the series five times.
• This is the 11th time since 1900 that Los Angeles has
been tied at two games in a Fall Classic, most recently in
the 2017 World Series in which they ultimately fell to the
Astros in seven games. Overall, the Dodgers went on to
win the Fall Classic three times (1981, 1965, 1955).
GAME FOUR RESULTS
• The Rays improved to 5-5 all-time in Game Four of a
Postseason series. The Rays are now 1-1 in Game Four
of the Fall Classic, previously losing to the Phillies in
Game Four of the 2018 Fall Classic. Tampa Bay is now
1-2 this Postseason in Game Four.
• The Dodgers fell to 20-23 all-time in Game Four of a
Postseason series. The Dodgers are now 9-12 in Game
Four of the Fall Classic. Los Angeles is now 0-2 this
Postseason in Game Four, also losing to the Braves in
in the NLCS.
WALK IT OFF TB
• Tonight’s historic contest marks the first walk-off win in a
World Series game since the Dodgers defeated the Red
Sox in Game Three of the 2018 Fall Classic.
RANDY’S HISTORIC RUN
• Randy Arozarena delivered a solo home run in the
fourth inning tonight, his ninth round-tripper of the 2020
playoffs, establishing a new Major League record for a
• His nine home runs also match Evan Longoria for the
most career home runs in Rays Postseason history.
• Randy’s 26 hits this Postseason match Pablo Sandoval
(26 H, 2014) for the MLB Postseason record.
• Arozarena also holds the MLB Postseason record
for the most total bases (59) in a single Postseason,
surpassing the mark held by David Freese (50) in 2011.
• Arozarena also notched his fifth three-hit game of the
2020 Postseason, establishing an MLB record for the
most in a single Postseason.
• His 13 extra-base hits this Postseason are one shy of the
major league record held by STL David Freese (2011)
• Last night, Arozarena surpassed Derek Jeter (22 H, 1996)
for the rookie record for most hits in a single Postseason.
• Randy’s 26 hits also trail only BJ Upton (27) for the most
career hits in Rays Postseason history.
• Brandon Lowe delivered a clutch three-run homer in the
sixth inning tonight to give the Rays a 5-4 lead. It was his
third round-tripper of the 2020 Fall Classic, and he now
has the most World Series homers in Rays history. • Lowe’s three homers are tied for sixth-most by a second
baseman in World Series history. Only Chase Utley (7),
Billy Martin (5), Joe Gordon (4), Davey Lopes (4) and
Tony Lazzeri (4) recorded more. • In addition, his three homers in a single Fall Classic rank
tied for second with Lopes (1978) and Jeff Kent (2002),
and trail only Utley’s five homers in 2009.
Game Four Postgame Notes – Saturday, October 24, 2020
TAMPA BAY HITS HOMERS
• With home runs by Randy Arozarena, Brandon Lowe,
Hunter Renfroe and Kevin Kiermaier, the Rays extended
their MLB Postseason record and have now clubbed 33
round-trippers during their 2020 playoff run. The previous
record of 27 was shared by the 2017 Astros and 2002
Giants, and was matched tonight by the 2020 Dodgers. • The four homers are a World Series record for the Rays
and match the franchise’s Postseason record, previously
accomplished in Game Two of the 2020 ALDS, Game
Three of the 2019 ALDS, the 2019 AL Wild Card and
Game Three of the 2008 ALCS. • Tampa’s four home runs are tied for fourth-most in a
World Series game, most recently accomplished by the
Red Sox in Game Five of the 2018 Fall Classic. The
record of five homers in a single World Series game is
shared by the 2017 Astros (G5); the 1989 Oakland A’s
(G3); and the 1928 Yankees (G4). • Kevin Kiermaier became the first player to hit a gametying home run in a World Series game while batting out
of the ninth spot in the batting order since Chili Davis in
FIVE-INNING ROAD BLOCK
• Following Ryan Yarbrough’s 3.1 inning-start, the Rays
are the second team in World Series history to have
six consecutive starters not reach 5.0 innings (Charlie
Morton, 2020 G3; Blake Snell, 2020 G2; Tyler Glasnow,
2020 G1; Scott Kazmir, 2008 G5; and Andy Sonnanstine,
2008 G4). • According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Rays
became the first AL Club to do so, as it was previously
accomplished only by the Dodgers (7G) in 1947.
A REAL TEAM EFFORT
• The Rays utilized 21players tonight, matching
the record for a nine-inning World Series game, previously
accomplished by the 1947 Yankees and 1961 Reds. • The Rays (7) and Dodgers (6) also combined for 13
pitchers tonight, the most in World Series history for a
• In the third inning, Corey Seager slugged his eighth
home run of the 2020 Postseason. Seager matched
Nelson Cruz (2011), Carlos Beltrán (2004) and
Barry Bonds (2002) for the second-most in a single
Postseason, trailing only Randy Arozarena, who clubbed
his ninth home run of the 2020 playoffs tonight. • The round-tripper was also the 11th Postseason homer
of his career, matching Duke Snider for second-most
in franchise history. Earlier in the game, Justin Turner
clubbed a home run to establish a new Club mark (12). • Seager now has three career World Series home runs,
matching Carlos Correa and Derek Jeter for the most by
a shortstop in Major League history. • Seager became the third player in franchise history to
tally four hits in a World Series game, joining Maury Wills
(1965 G5) and Jim Gilliam (1959 G5). • He became the first Major Leaguer since Kris Bryant
(2016 G6) to notch four hits and a home run in a Fall
Classic contest. Marked just the 19th such game in World
Series history. He joined Robin Yount (1982 G5) as the
only shortstops to accomplish the feat in history.
SHORT & SWEET
• Making his first career World Series start tonight,
Julio Urías tossed 4.2 innings of two-run ball with nine
strikeouts and one walk. • Urías became the second pitcher in World Series
history to tally nine strikeouts while tossing fewer than 5.0
innings, joining Blake Snell, who accomplished the feat
earlier this series in Game Two. It marks only the fourth
such start in Postseason history, also accomplished by
Brandon Woodruff (2020 NLWC G2) and CC Sabathia
(2017 ALDS G5). • Julio became the sixth Dodgers pitcher (seventh time) in
Fall Classic history to notch at least nine punchouts while
not permitting more than one free pass, joining Walker
Buehler, who did so last night, Clayton Kershaw (2017
G1), Sandy Koufax (1965 G2, G5), Don Drysdale (1963
G3) and Don Newcombe (1949 G1). • At 24 years, 73 days old, he became the youngest
pitcher to tally at least nine punchouts in a World Series
contest since Florida’s Josh Beckett (23, 163) in Game Six
of the 2003 World Series. The only pitcher in franchise
history to accomplish the feat at a younger age is Don
Newcombe (23.113), who had 11 strikeouts in Game
One of the 1949 World Series against the Yankees.
• Corey Seager and Justin Turner became the third pair of
teammates to both log at least four hits in a World Series
game, joining Paul Molitor and Robin Yount in 1982, and
Whitey Kurowski and Joe Garagiola in 1946.
• The Dodgers tallied seven two-out RBI tonight. Their
55 two-out RBI this Postseason surpassed the previous
record of 45 held by the 2004 Boston Red Sox for the
most in a single Postseason since 1999, according to the
Elias Sports Bureau. • The Dodgers became the first team in World Series
history to score with two outs in six different innings of a
WALK THIS WAY
• With his walk in the third inning, Max Muncy collected
his 19th free pass of the 2020 Postseason. He has now
recorded the third-most all-time in a single Postseason,
and trails just Barry Bonds (27 BB, 2002) and Gary
Sheffield (20 BB, 1997).
• With multiple home runs tonight, the Dodgers have
now clubbed multiple homers in seven consecutive
Postseason games, establishing an MLB Postseason
record. The previous mark of six straight games was
held by the Yankees (2019-2020).
• There was at least one run scored in eight consecutive
half innings tonight, the longest streak in World Series
history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. • This also marks the first game in Fall Classic history that
both Clubs scored in three straight innings.
PHILADELPHIA UNION (5) – TORONTO FC (0) POST MATCH SUMMARY
PHI – Sergio Santos 27’ (Kai Wagner)
PHI – Mark McKenzie 33’ (Kacper Przybylko, Jamiro Monteiro)
PHI – Jamiro Monteiro 56’ (Kacper Przybylko)
PHI – Sergio Santos 63’ (Kai Wagner)
PHI – Sergio Santos 68’ (Brenden Aaronson)
PHI – Jamiro Monteiro 9’ (caution)
TFC – Auro 10’ (caution)
PHI – Andre Blake 64’ (caution)
TFC – Patrick Mullins 73’ (caution)
TORONTO FC: 12-3-5 41 PTS.
PHILADELPHIA UNION: 12-3-5 41 PTS.
- Ralph Priso and Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty both made their Toronto FC and MLS debuts in tonight’s match, both coming on as substitutes
- Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty becomes the youngest player in club history to play for Toronto FC
TORONTO FC – Quentin Westberg; Richie Laryea, Omar Gonzalez, Laurent Ciman, Auro (Justin Morrow HT’); Michael Bradley (C), Marky Delgado (Liam Fraser HT’), Nick DeLeon (Ralph Priso 64’); Tsubasa Endoh, Alejandro Pozuelo (Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty 72’), Erickson Gallardo (Patrick Mullins 35’)
Substitutes Not Used: Kevin Silva, Tony Gallacher, Jayden Nelson, Jacob Shaffelburg
PHILADELPHIA – Andre Blake; Raymon Gaddis, Jakob Glesnes, Mark McKenzie, Kai Wagner; Jose Martinez (Jack Elliott 74’), Alejandro Bedoya (C) (Ilsinho 82’), Jamiro Monteiro, Brenden Aaronson (Anthony Fontana 82’); Kacper Przybylko (Cory Burke 69’), Sergio Santos (Andrew Wooten 69’)
Substitutes Not Used: Joe Bendik, Aurelien Collin, Olivier Mbaizo, Cole Turner
GREG VANNEY – HEAD COACH, TORONTO FC
You’re missing some big names and playing a good team but tough one tonight, what went wrong, is this the kind of performance that you have words with your team?
“What went wrong, it was wrong from start to finish. We weren’t close to them the entire night really. We weren’t in good spots for each other, we weren’t clear in terms of the stepping out in how we were going to defend, we couldn’t put passes together and they were just at a different speed then we were that’s for sure. So, part of it is we need to put it behind us but part of it is we need to recognize and just a reminder at this time of the year you physically got to be out ready to compete and battle, fight for balls and win tackles and all of those things first and foremost and then you can play, you got to be strong when you’re holding up the ball, the ball has to move a lot quicker, a lot of that stuff has to happen and tonight it didn’t. Yeah we’re missing some guys but guys had the opportunity to step in and try to show that this time of year they might be able to help us and again from start to finish it was never right and we were too far away from them for much of the night, they had way too much time on the ball. If there were duals, we lost most of them so that’s something that has to be cleaned up. So, 100% we will discuss this, but we also have to put it behind us because we got a game in another few days.”
Thoughts on Ralph and Jahkeele’s debuts…
“I wish it was in a game that was closer but in the end their opportunity came, and I thought they came on and did fine. By the time they came on in the game there wasn’t a lot left in it. I thought Jahkeele was spry, he had himself a great opportunity, the best one that we had all game, I thought he was busy and active. I think, Ralph came on and was able to get the game under him a little bit and help us to win a couple balls and help us move the ball forward a little bit. So, it was nice for those guys to just get a feel for it all. It’s unfortunate it was on a night like tonight where a lot of other things weren’t going well but I’m at least happy for them to at least get a sniff.”
Not often we see three substitutions before the second half, can you walk us through those changes?
“With the way the game was going in the first half I just felt like we needed an outlet on some level. We weren’t able to combine through them, we weren’t moving quick enough, the ball wasn’t moving quick enough for us to play through their pressure. We needed an outlet at some point so we got Pat on to try and give us at least something that if we had to play a little more direct we could compete a little bit better to hold things up or knock things down so that was the Pat scenario. Then the two at half-time were Marky, we needed to get off just to check on him, he was getting a little tight there and we needed really for precaution as well as concern we had to get him off of the field. Justin in for Auro, more to get Justin ready and moving forward, put a left footed player on that side so he could drive forward a little bit more to get us out of pressure if we needed to, nothing more than that, to get some guys going. Justin who hasn’t played in a few weeks and also to try to protect Marky a little bit, hopefully whatever he’s feeling is not anything for us to be too concerned about.”
MICHAEL BRADLEY – MIDFIELDER, TORONTO FC
How easy is it to put a performance like that behind you?
“Anybody who has played or has been a part of football understands that unfortunately there are night’s like this. They’re not fun, there’s no excuses but unfortunately, it’s just part of it sometimes. We have a really good team and we’ve had a really good team over the past handful of years and we’ve been fortunate enough and good enough to make sure that night’s like this are as few and far between as possible but the reality is still that it can happen to anybody. The reality is very simple, we are going to make sure that we use it as a real reminder for us as we go into this last part of the season and into the playoffs of what games this time of year are like of the way that some of these different teams try to make the game hard on us, we’re going to use it as a reminder about what our mentality and just commitment and focus has to be like at the beginning of games and so were going to use it in all the right ways and at the same time we’re going to get back to Hartford and we’re going to wake up in the morning and in all the right ways we’re going to completely move on and get ourselves ready for Wednesday.”
How difficult is it to see through the 90 minutes when it seems like at every step, every turn something is going wrong?
“That part of it is real. The challenge of still finishing out a game when you’ve had a night like that, when you get into the middle of the second half and now there’s no chance to win, to still find the right way to finish the game, that part is not fun but it’s just something that everybody has to deal with. To answer the first part of your question, like I said we’re going to look at certain things, we’re going to talk about certain things, we’re going to make sure we use it as a reminder, as a recalibration of what we need to be about as we move into these last few games of the regular season and into the playoffs. But again, there’s no time to feel sorry for ourselves, and nobody’s panicking, I promise you that.”
Debuts for Ralph and Jahkeele, what did you see from them tonight and what have you seen from them in training in terms of their development and being ready for this stage…
“Let’s be honest, that’s far and away the best part of the night is that two young Toronto boys from our academy who’ve worked hard to sign first team contracts and now push themselves in this last stretch in training every single day. They both get the opportunity to make their debut, to get on the field and both of them showed that they are not going to be fazed one bit. Certainly, for all us on the inside of the group and hopefully for everybody connected to the club, the coaches in the academy that they’ve had along the way, their parents, their families, that should be a really proud moment.”
-TORONTO FOOTBALL CLUB-