10/14/2013 1:08 A.M. ET
Oct. 13 John Farrell postgame interview
By / MLB.com
Q. Can you talk about an eighth inning capped by Ortiz's home run?
JOHN FARRELL: We're going to play it to the final out. David so many times has come up big, whether it's regular season, postseason, none bigger than tonight.
When you consider down four runs, not a very likely scenario that you come back from that many runs that late in the game. But we kept grounding out at‑bats. A couple of walks. We finally broke through in that sixth inning where we chipped away and got one run. David comes up ‑‑ to see the amount of work he's been putting in, just studying Benoit, he gets a first pitch fastball and drives it out of the ballpark.
Q. A situation where Gomes hadn't had any hits tonight and going into the decision to leave him in the ballgame, talk a little bit about that?
JOHN FARRELL: We had one more move on the bench with Nava. And we were holding him back for Will, if that spot came up. In those pressure moments we've seen ‑‑ there's complete trust in Jonny. And against Porcello we knew it was going to be sink or slider, and felt Jonny was equipped to handle that. He did some broken ground ball in 5 and 6 hole that Iggy probably makes an extended play and we catch a break for the error. But late in the game, Jonny's going to keep things under control at the plate.
Q. Your team does so much taking of pitches and especially first pitches. When David goes up there is that instinct or he's watched so much video or done so much studying?
JOHN FARRELL: Different story when you've got bases loaded. Obviously Benoit is trying to get a strike early. And David is such a smart hitter, that he's looking for one pitch on the plate early to turn it loose, we're fortunate he got it here tonight.
Q. You guys talk all the time about being resilient. When you've gone 15, 16 innings with just one hit, how do guys keep their heads up?
JOHN FARRELL: Tonight is almost a tale of two different games inside one. Their pitching basically dominated us. But Vic gets the two out base hit, Pedey gets the ball off the wall, and there was a little bit of life injected into us. We keep coming. That's been a characteristic the entire season, it was on display here tonight. And once again our guys don't quit until that last final out is made.
Q. Were you surprised that it was a Benoit‑Ortiz matchup, that a lefty wasn't coming in, like Coke, at that point?
JOHN FARRELL: Knowing that they had Coke loose or getting hot down there, and Benoit has recorded four out saves a few times this year already. He's going to go probably his best reliever in that situation. But you can look at it in many ways, he's probably had more success against left‑handers than right‑handers. Fortunately we got a pitch on the plate that David took out of here.
Q. I know you guys are athletes and professionals never like the term "must win." But heading to Detroit, what's the difference being tied?
JOHN FARRELL: If we're going into Detroit down two the way that they've pitched against us, that challenge becomes even greater. But I think everybody looked upon this series was going to be a well played, hard‑fought and it's not disappointing at this point.
Q. You've seen a lot of these things that David does in the postseason. What is it about him and moments like that one right there?
JOHN FARRELL: He stays calm. We talk a lot about whether it's David or other guys, guys that can perform in meaningful moments, they've got the ability to keep the emotions under control. It's clear‑cut what he's looking for. And whether it was Manny Ramirez for a number of years and he and David pairing up for success, there's a lot of similarities to those two players, that in those key moments, they keep their heart rate under control.
Q. Similar to David, the same thing with Pedroia, what can you say about what he's done in this series and was it more of a lift tonight to the dugout when he got that first run in?
JOHN FARRELL: Yeah, it was. Given the first game and a half had gone, Pedey does things a little bit differently than everybody else. And it's such a strong, competitive spirit, a will to succeed, whether it's a headlong dive in the 3 or 4 hole or field a ground ball or whether it's to come up and never give in. There's a competitive drive in that guy that is second to none. And we thrive off it, we feed off it. That was the case here tonight.
Q. You mentioned David studying Benoit. Is that a matchup he anticipated?
JOHN FARRELL: You're going to face that closer. We don't see him very many times during the regular season. But there's probably going to be key moments where the middle of the order is going to face that closer, that best reliever, and that was the case tonight.
Oct. 13 David Ortiz postgame interview
Q. Facing Benoit, what was your game plan and how aggressive were you swinging at that first pitch?
DAVID ORTIZ: Well, I know facing him a couple of times and during the regular season, and he kind of started slow and then go back to the heat, which pretty much all of them have a good fastball.
Q. John said you've done extra work on Benoit because you hadn't faced him that much. How much work did you do to be prepared for that sort of moment?
DAVID ORTIZ: I watch everybody. I watch every single pitcher, what they're trying to do against me, especially. I know they try to approach me better than anyone else. They don't want to make a mistake. So try to work hard on that.
And that guy has good stuff. And we got the history for things to happen before. And you make up your mind. After you see that, I pretty much tell all the guys, especially the young hitters, you can't go to the plate trying to hit everything. That's what we've been trying to do the last couple of days, plus their pitching being outstanding.
Like Sanchez last night, he pretty much had everybody guessing, Scherzer tonight was outstanding. He have everything going on. And these guys, they haven't give in. Like you saw Scherzer up by four runs, 3‑2 throw a slider, overpowering with his fastball. We know we are a dangerous hitting team. So they pitching careful to everybody.
Q. You've had some pretty big moments in October. How high up do you rank this one, considering how bleak things looked for a while tonight?
DAVID ORTIZ: We need it, man. We need start some momentum going on. And I think going back to Detroit 1‑1 is ‑‑ 2‑0, I'm pretty sure that that game that we're going to have on Tuesday against Verlander I'm pretty sure you're going to see guys having better at‑bats. I think that, like I say, they have an outstanding pitching and we are the kind of team that we try to take advantage of mistake.
And the past couple of days, I mean, see the whole regular season you haven't seen a team shutting us down for 14, 15 straight innings like they have the past couple of days. If you look at the way we've been pitching, unbelievable. We play those guys seven times during the season, they have a totally different approach, the way they've been pitching these past couple of days. It's up to us make an adjustment.
Q. How much does your vast postseason experience help your comfort level as you step up there?
DAVID ORTIZ: I tell you what, man, postseason is something that it can work both way for you. It can go well, if you stay calm. Or it can go bad if you try to overdo things.
Like last night, pretty much all we were trying to overdo things. I was trying to produce for the team when the opposition is pitching me very careful. I was chasing a lot of bad pitches, I feel like I was jumping a little bit. In my first couple of at‑bat I feel like I was doing some funny things. We've had four days off and sometime it can go against you, when you're not facing pitching. And it happens. It happen to all of us. So we pretty much need the momentum going on. And I think winning this game is going to tell a lot.
Q. How were you able to calm down?
DAVID ORTIZ: You know, I just tried not to do too much, man. I try to put a good swing on the ball. My idea at‑bat wasn't to go out and hit a grand slam. We've been struggling, when it comes down to put a good swing on the ball. Those guys have been doing an outstanding job hitting the spot and keeping ‑‑ keeping us off balance. If I was telling you about thinking about hitting a gland slam, I'd be lying to you now. You try to put a good swing on the ball and that happens.
Q. Were you surprised they didn't bring in Coke, a lefty?
DAVID ORTIZ: What can I tell you? Playoff is playoff, and you've got to make your pitches. You've got to do what you've got to do. As a hitter you are more on top of your toes in a playoff game what you normally do in the regular season, adrenaline is going all over the place. And there's a reason why Leyland did what he did. He's been doing good for them. When you need four outs, how many times do you see that? You see that all the time. So what they see is the situation that they go into, when you go down with your closer.
Q. When you saw Jonny Gomes go on to second base, did you have any doubt somebody was going to try to get him in?
DAVID ORTIZ: I'm telling you, playoff situation like that, pretty much most of the time you see hitter executing. And especially tie game, late in the game, and we have a lot of guys capable of doing that.
Q. How much were you able to watch the flight of the ball and did you think at any point that Hunter had a good shot at it?
DAVID ORTIZ: I tell you, Torii always scare me. I grow up playing with Torii. He's one of the best outfielder I ever saw in my life. Torii can chase balls out there. This guy went from playing centerfield to right field, and I wouldn't be surprised if he get a Gold Glove again this year. I saw on the video and the reason why I think he didn't catch that ball is because the ball take like a left turn when he was going right. And, looked to me like he kind of touched it. But that's Torii. Torii is a trooper out there, man. And he's fun to watch.
Q. The pitch that you hit, it was a change‑up, I think?
DAVID ORTIZ: Yep.
Q. Were you looking for a change‑up? It was outside. You were able to pull it. Oftentimes you'll take that off the wall if you have a good bead on it. But this one you pulled.
DAVID ORTIZ: I know they not going to let me beat them with a fastball in that situation. Plus I know that my boy, Benoit, he had a good splitter. And I take my chances in the situation. But that pitch was pretty much hittable. It was on the plate. And put a good swing on it.
Oct. 13 Jarrod Saltalamacchia postgame interview
Q. Can you take us through that at‑bat and what were you thinking after that wild pitch?
JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA: Well, my approach changed. At first, man on second, I was trying to get him over. After he threw that first pitch down and away, I figured that's how they were going to pitch me. I tried bunting earlier in the year against them and it didn't work out so well. I figured I'd go ahead and swing the bat. And I felt good.
Once the fastball happened, the approach changed a little bit, trying to hit the ball up the middle and take your chance.
Q. Can you describe the confidence you feel when you see David against Benoit in that situation in the eighth inning?
JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA: David hitting in the postseason, period, you knew he was going to break out of it. Last night, Sanchez making a lot of people look pretty bad at the plate. So we knew going into tonight we had a battle and bounced back.
But coming against Benoit right there, I felt something good was going to happen. I think everyone knew something good was going to happen. He stayed on it and drove it to right center.
Q. What's it like in the dugout there in the fifth and sixth inning when you have one hit there and things aren't going your way, it's been a game and a half now, what's the emotion like in the dugout?
JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA: It was tough. We didn't get much since last night. And tonight was going the same way. Felt that sense we were going to break out of it. We had to. It was just ‑‑ we're on a team that stays on the struggle that long.
We felt we were going to break out of it. And I think on the fifth or sixth inning is when everyone got more pumped up and excited. We were getting some opportunities, just not doing anything with it. That was a big walk by Ells, and then we were able to get the bases loaded.
Q. What did you make on that pitch that David hit, for him to hit a change‑up like that down and away?
JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA: That's when David is on, right there. In my head, bases loaded, he had been out in front of a lot of pitches, really kind of jumping at the ball. So I thought he was probably going to take the split and hit it off the wall. I didn't think he was going to take it down and away and pull it to the right. But that's what he does.
Q. When you see the ball go off Fielder's glove, are you thinking that there's some sort of karmic thing going on?
JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA: I was hoping so. No, I was trying to get the ball over, hit it over the right side of the field. And when I did pop it up I kind of was hoping it was getting out. And then as I saw him getting close to Carp, I didn't think he was going to catch it. And I think if you watch the replay I was fist pumping when he did drop it. That's a big difference with men on third and one out and men on second and still one out. That was a big turning point, I think.
Q. What changed for Clay in the sixth after the first five innings and what does it mean to pick him up?
JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA: Well, I don't think Clay had his best stuff, obviously. The cutter was kind of backing up. They're an aggressive hitting team. And they didn't make any mistakes. We left some change‑ups that Cabrera hit out. And I think he was just starting to get a little tired and leaving it up a little bit.
But that's what we're about. We're about picking each other up. The starters have picked us up 12, 13 times this year, when we got shut out. It's about time we started picking stuff up for these guys and winning some games.
Q. What's it like to see the David Ortiz postseason experience live?
JARROD SALTALAMACCHIA: It's incredible, there's no sense of ‑‑ on the bench there's nobody really surprised when he does something like he does. But it's unbelievable. You watch it on TV for so many years, and growing up watching it and then being able to be on the bench and watch that ball go out and seeing him run the bases. It's like any other day. He gets excited but you can't really tell he's any different, if he's rushed or if he's calm, he's the same every day.
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