Potent quotables: 12 pieces of bacon and a Red Bull

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“We’ll show up [Sunday], do what we always do on early games, have 12 pieces of bacon, a Red Bull and go get ’em.”



– Terry Francona reveals how the Red Sox will prepare
for a do-or-die matinee with the Angels on Sunday. Clay Buchholz will
attempt to save the season against Scott Kazmir. Kazmir was 2-2 with a
1.73 ERA in six starts with the Angels this season.




“This game can be really weird. I
never would have guessed that we would have swept those guys.”




– Casey Blake comments on his team’s unlikely sweep of the Cardinals.
Though the Dodgers had the better record during the regular season,
they had to face two legitimate Cy Young candidates to start the
series. The Dodgers managed to pull out both games. They carried that
momentum to Game 3 with a dominant effort by Vicente Padilla, who
tossed seven scoreless innings.




“I don’t like the stigma of our club getting swept. We’re a better club than that, and the series was more
competitive than that. But that’s what it is. But today wasn’t a real
good competition.”





– Tony La Russa knows his team is better than the one that showed up for the NLDS. This season marks the first time that the Cardinals have ever been swept in a Division Series or League Championship Series.



“He wasn’t a bad guy at all, as far as I was I was concerned. I didn’t
feel like he stole our money. … I went down with him. He took a lot
of crap, and so did I. I never lost my perspective on what really
happened. It was a move that didn’t work because he didn’t stay
healthy. Do I blame him for it? No I don’t I don’t think he laid down
on us.”




– Yankees general manager Brian Cashman reflects on the much-maligned Carl Pavano signing. Pavano will seek redemption against his former team on Sunday night as the Twins try to keep their season alive.

Kris Bryant on Joey Votto: “He’s the best player ever … He’s a future Hall of Famer, that’s for sure.”

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The Cubs wrapped up a four-game series against the Reds at Wrigley Field on Thursday afternoon, suffering a 13-10 loss to split the set. They’ll match up again against the Reds next week for a three-game series in Cincinnati. That’s good news for Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant, because that means he’ll get to see Reds first baseman Joey Votto some more.

As CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney reports, Bryant has grown quite fond of Votto. Bryant has already won a World Series ring, a Rookie of the Year Award, and an MVP Award, but he still looks up to Votto. According to Bryant, Votto is “the best player ever.” He added, ““He’s my favorite player. I love watching him. I love talking to him, just picking his brain. He gets a lot of (heat) about his walks and working at-bats and some people want him to swing at more pitches. But, gosh, I mean, he does an unbelievable job. You know that he’s going to give you a great at-bat every time he goes up there. It’s definitely a guy that I look up to and I can learn from.”

Bryant said that Votto is “a future Hall of Famer, that’s for sure.”

Bryant also explained how his approach changed by watching Votto. He said that in his rookie season, he was “swinging at everything.” Votto, however, is “aggressive, but he’s not going to swing at a pitch until he wants it.”

Indeed, in Bryant’s rookie season, he struck out in nearly 31 percent of his 650 plate appearances. This season, he has struck out in only 19 percent of his PA. His walk rate has also increased by more than 2.5 percent since his rookie campaign. Compared to last year, Bryant is down in HR and RBI, but his average is the same, his on-base percentage is markedly better, and his slugging percentage is only down by a minute amount.

Video: Daniel Descalso hits D-Backs’ third inside-the-park homer of the season

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Diamondbacks second baseman Daniel Descalso hit his team’s third inside-the-park home run of the season during Thursday’s 4-0 win over the Astros. In the top of the fourth inning, with the score 1-0 and the bases empty, Descalso ripped a 1-0, 83 MPH change-up to right-center field. The ball caromed off the wall, heading towards left field, which sent center Jake Marisnick on the chase. Marisnick tried to pick up the ball with his glove, but dropped it, which sealed Descalso’s destiny for an inside-the-parker.

It had only been five days since the Diamondbacks’ last inside-the-park home run. David Peralta hit one against the Cubs on August 12. Ketel Marte legged out his club’s first ITPHR on July 26 against the Braves.

As ESPN Stats & Info notes, the Diamondbacks have three as a team, which is amazing because the other 29 teams have hit seven combined.