10/05/2004 10:39 PM ET
Millar: We set the tone early
First baseman likes Boston's chances with Pedro
Red Sox first baseman Kevin Millar has been a regular contributor to MLB.com the past two seasons. He is providing daily commentary throughout Boston's postseason run. Millar breaks down his team's 9-3 victory in Game 1 over the Angels.
|After hitting a two-run homer, Kevin Millar is congratulated by David Ortiz. (Kevork Djansezian/AP)
This is the way you want to go out there and set a tone. We got a great pitching performance by Curt Schilling, we swung the bats well, we played great defense. It was a great team win and our bullpen did a great job. We're capable of playing like that.
It was nice for me, personally, to make a contribution right away, too, getting that two-run homer in the fourth. It was a big hit for the team. When you get a chance to put the team up, 3-0, at that time, it's important against a great competitor like Jarrod Washburn.
You don't want him to get great tempo in the game because he's pitching at home. He hung a changeup and I was able to get a good swing on it and get the good part of the bat on the baseball. And then Manny Ramirez came up with the big three-run homer that really put the nail in the coffin.
This one is in the books, but Game 2 is just as important. We have two of the biggest horses in the game, and that's what makes us so dangerous. We had Schilling today, and we come back with Pedro Martinez in Game 2. We don't have a No. 1 or a No. 2. We have two aces.
We have a chance to get Pedro Martinez on the mound, up 1-0. I like it. If he's throwing the game he's capable of throwing, it will be a tough game.
Everyone is talking about Pedro. He's lost four in a row and all that, but he's a human being. He's throwing the ball well. We're so used to seeing him have the 1.80 or 1.90 ERA, but this guy goes and competes every pitch. He's a three-time Cy Young Award winner. He's not a guy where other teams are saying, 'Hey, let's face Pedro Martinez.'
It's nice to get that first one out of the way. It gets that nervous energy out.
If you're not nervous, you're not ready. Everyone in this locker room was nervous. That's what it's about. It's a big group of kids in here playing baseball.
We were excited to get out there and get the first win out of the way, and now we'll continue to play good baseball.
Kevin Millar's analysis appears as told to MLB.com reporter Ian Browne. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.