10/07/2004 2:59 AM ET
Pedro Martinez, postgame quotes
Game 2 starter talks about his winning performance
Q. Pedro, how satisfying was this performance for you?
PEDRO MARTINEZ: Well, to me, it's not anything really big. It's a great feeling for the team to go home where we play so well, basically, ahead 2 and 0. It's not any surprise more me, but I am really happy in the same way to actually go back to where I wanted to be, and no better moment to actually change the way I was doing things.
Q. Pedro, with some of your public comments the last week or two, there was the suspicion from some teammates and maybe even your manager that you were playing possum a little bit, that this was a little bit of a head game you were playing with opponents. Did you have any doubt about what you were going to be able to do tonight?
PEDRO MARTINEZ: I felt I could do anything, do any game. I just throw at the end of the season and the regular season, and I knew for a fact that off season game could get your adrenaline going, could get you to do things totally different than the way you really think during the regular season, especially at the end when doing things didn't really count.
But I didn't take any of the things for granted. I wanted to do good. I just couldn't do it. But thank God, I turned it around, and now I feel like I can pitch better.
And by the way, I wasn't playing mind games with anybody, I just said what I said. I am responsible for it, but I wish everybody would fall asleep for that one and let me go out there and do my thing.
Q. Pedro, you seem to have a good fastball right out of the gate. Did you make any more of a conscious effort to rely on your fastball tonight?
PEDRO MARTINEZ: You know what? I did not want to say to you guys, because I don't like to make up excuses. What I do I do, either good or bad. But in the last two games I felt a little stronger than normal, and if I was to tell you guys that I was just getting stronger, you would probably laugh at me, say, well, it's October and you are feeling stronger.
You know, my body has reacted differently the last few years. My last fastball in the playoff last year was 95 miles an hour, and I came off the Spring Training when I was supposedly throwing 90, or whatever. I don't know if it was negotiations related or what happened.
But I feel great right now. My arm feels great. I feel strong. I feel like I can click whenever I want, and I just thank God for the way I am feeling, and I just hope to continue to do that.
And I didn't want to say I was getting stronger, and I was getting a little erratic with my pitches. Control is what happens, but I didn't want to bring it up for an excuse for not doing well like I was.
Q. What was that 7th inning like, specifically the at bats against Eckstein and Figgins?
PEDRO MARTINEZ: It wasn't anything strange at all. Those guys can make contact, especially Eckstein. I knew that Eckstein didn't really hit the ball into the field, but I couldn't give up. I had to continue to just make him swing the bat and get into the field or hit it out of the park if he could.
Q. Pedro, how did it feel pitching second? You normally open. But pitching second, did it put you in a different frame of mind? Was it either more relaxing or did you get to see the series in a different way?
PEDRO MARTINEZ: You know, I was number 1 today. That's all that matters to me. I don't believe in what the experts from out here have to say. I am just here to do my job. I get paid to do my job, and I do it anywhere they choose to put me.
I actually shut my mouth, I ate my ego, because I wanted to let go on some of these experts around here talking trash, and I swallowed it, because to me, anytime they give me the ball, I am special. I am the number 1. It doesn't matter how many days I have to wait.
And to me it was an honor to see Curt Schilling win. He pitched better than me; I am admitting it. I respect that, as well, so enough with the trash talking. We get along really well. I have never been mad because he pitches any game. He has been outstanding against not only this team but any team we played. We get along great. Please don't try to break that up, making up trash, talking or making up stuff that's not true, so I am glad I am the type to feel better.
Q. Just to go back to the point you were saying before, if you had to guess, why are you stronger now than you were before?
PEDRO MARTINEZ: Well, I did a rehab that was different to me. I got hurt in 2001, and after talking to the doctors that actually were in charge of my rehab, they said that in my third year, I will probably become normal again, like I was, before I got hurt.
And it's surprising, but it is feeling like when I was I actually pitched for the first time all of the outings I was given, and pitched 200 some pitches, which was my average, actually. And feeling great. Thank God, and I hope it continues to be that way.
Q. Pedro, aside from any suggestion that there was ever any problem between you and Schilling, I mean, did you were you at all hurt by being asked to pitch game 2? And I am not suggesting angry, but as much as disappointed.
PEDRO MARTINEZ: You know, one thing I am going to tell you right now, I did not want to pitch the way I pitched the last few games. But I did not pitch up to the level that they expected me to pitch, and Schilling continued to do it all season long.
You know what? It actually took a little bit of the pressure off me to actually see him go out there. And I appreciate that, and I respect that. And I don't really have to second guess whatever decisions they make. I am an employee, I get paid to do what I do, and I go and do it however they want. If tomorrow I have to be in the bullpen, if I blow my arm out, I will do it, whenever we play another game.
I know I achieved a lot, and I know I have my little share of respect, but when you talk about playoffs, there is no time to be mad, there is no time to complain, there is no soreness that you can't overcome or pain, sometimes, and I hope I continue to do it. I am going to leave my heart out there for my team.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.