Francona workout day interview
Manager comments on Beckett, Red Sox clubhouse and lineup
You've got a starting pitcher who has been in this exact situation four years ago in the NLCS, and you've got a core group of guys who came back from down 3-0 in '04. How much does that translate? Is it a factor? Does it help?
TERRY FRANCONA: I think it's our responsibility to try to make every positive factor in there be positive. You know what, every year is different. Shoot, every inning in every game is different, but I think you certainly try to draw upon experiences, and again, draw positives wherever you can. That's our responsibility.
You play games out and you end up kind of landing where you are, so it's our responsibility to go from there and make it good.
In two of the last three games obviously they've been tie ballgames until the Indians have had an enormous inning. How disappointing is it at this stage of the season to have them become seven run innings instead of two or three?
TERRY FRANCONA: That's exactly why we ended up going to Manny when we did, to stop that. It got extended in a hurry.
Yeah, it's disappointing. Certainly you hear us talk during the season all the time about trying to have crooked number innings because it certainly helps you win games, and that's twice now we haven't been able to put out the fire quickly enough. I mean, last night that was the only inning they scored, but we ended up fighting uphill so much just because we couldn't put it out.
We've been really comfortable all year with Delcarmen following Wakefield because of the differential, giving hitters such a different look. But the pitch to Peralta, he missed so much that -- I went back and looked at that, you give him credit for having a great swing, but we really missed our spot.
During the national broadcast last night there was a report that Beckett had some back stiffness after his last start. Was that indeed the case, and did that factor in at all?
TERRY FRANCONA: You know, I don't think I want to get into any medical. I think I kind of alluded the other day after his start that he was -- I think I might have said he was kind of beat up or it took a toll on him or however I worded it. I think I'm just comfortable saying that. It took its toll.
And again, don't feel the need to always reveal every single nick that somebody has or doesn't have or is perceived, but like I said, it took its toll on him a little bit.
Three years ago before Game 4 of the ALCS we asked you what the mood was in the locker room and you said you weren't sure because you just came from there and they were playing salsa a music at top volume. Before Game 5 of the ALCS, what's the feeling in your clubhouse?
TERRY FRANCONA: Actually what I remember is I walked in there and they were watching Animal House, watching Belushi hit the guy over the head with a guitar. I was thinking it was sort of appropriate (laughter).
You know, you can't force a personality on teams. If you went down there now and saw this group acting differently to show that they're at ease, again, they are the way they are. We have some guys down there that are rather serious and quiet, and the rest of the guys that are the way they are. So as long as they stay consistent in their approach and we do as a staff, that's probably the best thing we can do.
You won't get into particulars regarding Beckett. Is there anything that you would have any reservations about sending him out there tomorrow?
TERRY FRANCONA: No, no, no. Again, I don't want to make up more of anything that isn't there, either. Basically in a nutshell we really felt like the way we did it put us in the best position for the whole series.
You haven't really put innings together. Any lineup thoughts for tomorrow, maybe at that bottom part of the lineup that hasn't done a lot?
TERRY FRANCONA: Well, with Sabathia pitching, Kielty will play right field again.
You know, there's a lot of thoughts, and Millsie and myself, we stayed here last night and talked about a lot of things. But I think we tried so hard to get ourselves in a position where we could run this lineup out there, and then in Games 1 and 2 really did such a great job. So in short doses things certainly get magnified. I think what we need to do is get ourselves in position where we do manufacture runs and not just lean on solo home runs. I don't know that juggling people necessarily is going to make those solo home runs be different.
To take that a step further, I think in '04 I think Johnny was 3-for-29 before Game 7 of the ALCS. How important is it for you to be loyal to the guys that kind of got you where you are now?
TERRY FRANCONA: It's not just the loyalty because I certainly think that they know that that's there. I think what it is is trying to do what you think is right. I don't think there's ever a I'm trying to think of the right word. There's a difference between being loyal and doing what you think is right. I think you can do both. Sometimes the loyalty part is when you tell somebody something they don't want to hear, telling them the truth. And we certainly do that all the time.
Just think that we're going to do things the way we think is the right way to do it, and if it doesn't work and we go back and we think about it and we do it again.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.