D-backs manager Lovullo sticking to what got him here in one-game playoff
Arizona Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo is aware of what Wednesday’s National League Wild Card Game against the Colorado Rockies means, but he isn’t ready to change his operation for it.
“Will I change my strategy? Probably not,” Lovullo said. “It’s worked all year long here. We made it this far. For me to change and do something totally different, it’s really not my style. But I can assure you that, if I do, it will have a strategy, there will be a reason for it.”
Lovullo prefaced the statement by acknowledging this is not just another game.
“Well, first of all, it’s a one-game knockout moment where the chips are all in there,” Lovullo said Monday. “We know what the stakes are. And in baseball, I think that we’re all adrenaline junkies. We love those moments. We live for them. We prepare for them. We know how to navigate through them. I enjoy feeling pressure.”
Louvllo said he spoke with managers Bruce Bochy of the San Francisco Giants and Ned Yost of the Kansas City Royals, and their advice on playoff managing was to make things simple.
The first-year manager is still working through his roster as he continues to figure out what situations would call for a certain pitcher and so on. Both managers did recommend an extra position player over a pitcher.
Lovullo spoke on some of his philosophies on managing, including establishing relationships with each player early and togetherness as a whole roster. Those values have been the driving force of his managing style, and his players see that through.
“I think the difference for us is communication, and the way he came to us in the beginning and said, hey, we’re just going to play as a team,” outfielder David Peralta said. “We’re going to be a big family. He’s communicated about whatever moves he’s going to do and everything. I think we can appreciate that.”
Lovullo, and his team, credit that approach to the success the team has had.
“So it was a perfect storm of delivering the message to try and change the culture, and then the players went out and executed every single day,” Lovullo said. “They did that on their own. They performed. They grew. They cared about one another. And you could see where that landed us.”
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