On Bourn, McCann what you want to try to rally in ninth
“Usually at home we want to be shaking hands in the ninth but yeah you had those two guys up. You had Bourny getting on base and you had Mac and the top of the order. They escaped another one. I think we left what 10 runners on base. We weren’t very good with runners on base even though we hit the ball hard, we hit it right at them. I thought Freeman’s ball in the previous inning was going to split the gap. He was right there. I thought Sheets did a terrific job. Longest outing of the year. Pushed him out there in the seventh inning and he did a nice job. Gave us a good opportunity to win the ballgame. Gave up three earned runs and did a fantastic job for us to try to win that ballgame. Our bullpen did another nice job keeping the game right there. Avilan came on with first and second to get Dobbs, it was a big inning. That inning could have gotten out of hand and we kept it there in check and they turned two double-plays, one in the eighth and one in the ninth to get out of jams so. Go on to tomorrow, try to win the series.”
On Sheets’ tough fourth inning
“I thought the first inning was the tough one. We gave up five hits in the first, couple balls, the one Carlos Lee hit, it was a grenade behind first base, we can’t really defend it anywhere. That was an RBI and a couple balls got through the infield there but other than that I thought he did a nice job. He gave up a run on the ball that LeBlanc hit down the line. He got aggressive on it and scored a run. Other than that I thought he did a terrific job keeping us in the ballgame.”
On good debut for Johnson
“That’s the way he is. He’s a hard-nosed blue collar guy. bunt single and a great at-bat against Bell to get a base hit and did a nice job in the outfield. So that’s what he does. He gives us those type of at-bats and those type of games day in and day out.”
On Janish’s two hits
“And bases loaded, I thought that ball had a chance to split the gap. And he made a couple nice plays defensively on that flyball down the line there in foul territory. Can’t complain about anything he’s done. He’s been terrific.”
On pinch-hitting Pastornicky for him in 8th inning
“Pastornicky is more of an offensive-type player. And you’ve got a chance there to try to do something late in the game and take a shot at it.”
Sheets’ 104 pitches and seventh-inning seen as progress
“For him going out there in the seventh was a big plus. I think going out sitting down (and getting up) for seven innings and getting over that 100-pitch mark was a good step forward.”
On giving up some seeing-eye singles, bloops
“It’s a base hit. I’m not going to say they hit bloopers. They got hits.”
On how he felt going season-high 6-2/3 innings and 104 pitches
“I felt good. I needed to find a way to nip that first inning in the bud. I think if I just fielded my position I may have had a shot. That ball’s a liner back to me, I think Dobbs hit it. I feel like that ball’s very catchable and I should have probably caught it. I just kind of froze up. I couldn’t really move.
“It stinks when you’re riding a long winning streak and the first inning I gave them the momentum right out the gate, the momentum that we earned over seven games.”
But to hold them to one run after 1st, are you happy with that?
“I try to keep them to none. I just couldn’t get out of the inning. I’d get two quick outs in some innings and they’d find a way to get a runner on. They did a fine job of hitting and just keeping pressure on me.”
On Marlins’ two-out hits in fourth inning, infield hit and pitcher’s double down line
“I went 0-2 and felt like I made a pretty good 1-2 pitch on [Cousins]. Stats say he’s a pretty aggressive hitter, and he really didn’t budge. The next pitch he puts it in play. We knock it down [Freeman at first base], we can’t make a play. I don’t know where the pitch was to the pitcher. He finds the line. The run scored, but regardless whether the run wouldn’t have scored, it was just that kind of night — you go from one pitch a way to having to throw seven or eight more pitches. I think it happened two or three innings.”
On pitching into seventh inning (lasted six innings in each of previous three starts)
“I got to the seventh, I’m going to take some positives out of it. It stinks [that] the first inning was the game. After that I threw the ball well. I thought I was throwing OK early, but just didn’t make enough pitches.”
On loss, missed opportunities
“I don’t know what happened today, man. I don’t know what to say. I guess we had opportunities to score a couple of runs, but we didn’t take advantage of a couple of pitches that we probably could have hit hard somewhere. It didn’t happen.
“Ben Sheets threw the ball well. He kept us in the game. We just didn’t score. We didn’t score enough runs to come back. We had a chance to tie the game and we didn’t.”
On his error in left field and other missed plays
“We didn’t execute some routine plays. Like, I missed that ball in the outfield and they scored a run. The main thing is, we didn’t take advantage of opportunities to score. When you don’t tie the game, you feel pressure at the end of the game, looking for a homer in that situation. It’s hard.
“We’re just going to come back tomorrow and come back at it, start a winning streak again.”
– Staff writer Carroll Rogers contributed to this report