Oct. 12 John Gibbons postgame interview

MODERATOR: Okay, we'll get started with questions for John Gibbons.

Q. John, why David, when you had such a substantial lead?

JOHN GIBBONS: Well, I looked at it this way. You know, was hoping today to get five out of RA, six if everything went well. We did have a nice little lead. The way I looked at it, it was starting to roll around that top a little bit. And one thing I've learned over the years, sometimes the best way you win games is don't let the team get back into it. Especially this -- you know, it's our first go-round with this kind of game but I know what kind of offense they have. So I was really focusing on Choo, he hit him twice and he's hit him in his career. What we didn't want to happen is a couple guys on base, Choo comes up. And RA has been known to give up the fly balls, launch it. Maybe if that should happen now they're right back in the game. And I told Price today, if we get you up, you're going in. Last night he was kind of up and down a couple times. We couldn't do that again. That all factored in with Cecil down and Loup was out today, that left-handed bunch there. Yeah, it wasn't an easy decision. It was hard for me to do, but I thought that was the best way to win the game, keep them from coming back because -- even they came back a little bit late in the game and made it reachable for them. And of course you watched that Kansas City game, too. You know how that works. That's what was behind it. He might have had an inning left anyway, we're kind of guessing, but probably not a relationship-building move, but a team win, that's what I was looking for.

Q. John, before the season ended, you were kind of emotional about your decision-making with Mark Buehrle. Do you throw all that away come playoff time when you have to take R.A. out with one more batter and he gets a win?

JOHN GIBBONS: Yeah, I care as much as anybody about individual accomplishments, whether it's a save or a win or home run, whatever it is. When it comes down to it, my job is to manage the team and try to win the game. All those things factored in, I thought it was the best move. Probably not a popular move but that's what you've got to do. But situations, regular season, that's different, that doesn't happen, you know. But this is a do-or-die game for us and I've seen it too many times in this business, especially with the kind of lineup and the way things were stacking up for us, a strike, a long ball, get a couple guys on a long ball, it's a totally different game. There's still a lot of game left. Fans get back into it and all that stuff, so.

Q. With Price throwing 50 pitches now, does this mean that Stroman's going to start Game 5 and that Price will be available out of the bullpen?

JOHN GIBBONS: If David got in there at all today, Stroman's going to throw Wednesday, so yeah.

Q. I've got to go back to Dickey one more time here. I understand everything that you just said, but it was 7-1?

JOHN GIBBONS: Right.

Q. And he was one out away from the likely win. So I'm still not understanding why -- is it the knuckleball that you didn't trust? Is it him that you didn't trust, and did he say anything to you when you came out to the mound?

JOHN GIBBONS: No, no, he was fine. I even mentioned to him when he was sitting in the dugout, the half inning before he went back out there. Really what it came down to, I was looking with their lineup what was going to happen. He had three guys before he got to Choo. Choo had been on him all day and he's hit him his whole career. It's a great hitting park if you're a left-hander, it's some easy home runs. So I thought, you know what, if I'm getting David hot, he's got to go in. So and this is the situation, maybe we eliminate them from getting Choo on, and then you've got Fielder and all those guys. There's a method to the madness. I'm sure it's not real popular.

Q. (No microphone.)

JOHN GIBBONS: No, it had nothing to do with that. We had one lefty down there tonight. You had better take advantage of it that point anyway. We're hoping if he gets it, he can run the game, you know. No, no, that had zero to do with that. I don't think he needs my help to get wins.

Q. John, is Price still available to you on Wednesday out of the bullpen?

JOHN GIBBONS: No, you won't see him now.

Q. To follow up on that, John, was there a point as that game was going along and Price was in there where -- was there a decision to make, well, if I take him out at a certain point I might still have him available for Game 5? Or once you put him in, did you figure this was going to be it for him?

JOHN GIBBONS: Well, we wanted to at least get him to the last couple innings, get him to the eight and ninth, and we had Sanchez. A lots based on our availability of left-handers. And let's face it, you need some lefties against this lineup, really. Cecil is out, Loup had some family issues to deal with so he wasn't around. Really I thought it was a pretty good strategy. It wasn't a popular one but I thought that was the best way to go. It's all about winning, I thought, you know.

Q. John, you mentioned the Kansas City-Houston game. I think that -- did you see that score during your game?

JOHN GIBBONS: Oh, yeah, I caught the tail end of it before I went out there.

Q. Was that on your mind?

JOHN GIBBONS: Oh, yeah. You know what, things happen fast. And sometimes, I've learned, I've watched enough baseball games, been involved in enough that sometimes the only chance you've got to win is you keep the team from coming back in those lopsided games. At that point, too, they started to hold our offense in check. We scored a lot early. The other pitcher was pretty good, which you see a lot, but you score a lot of runs early, all of a sudden you dry up. Next thing you know a team climbs back, so that's basically what it wasn't.

Q. When you said it wasn't a relationship building move. Are you talking about Price or --

JOHN GIBBONS: That was sarcasm.

Q. I know that. Were you talking about David or Dickey?

JOHN GIBBONS: Whoever your starter is, if you yank him with one out away, that's it --

Q. David was okay coming in the way he was used?

JOHN GIBBONS: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Q. Looks like it's Stroman and Hamels for Game 5. Thoughts on the matchup?

JOHN GIBBONS: Just like the second game at home. They both pitched great, turned out to be a 14 inning game. Tight ballgame, wouldn't surprise me one bit.

Q. John, you're going back home, which hasn't been good so far in the series, but you've won two. You must like the position the team is in going back to Toronto?

JOHN GIBBONS: Well, yeah, the fact that we're going back is everything, yeah. You know, we've been good at home all year. We didn't get those two games there, we didn't play particularly well necessarily, but that's where we're best. And that was the goal to come down here, hopefully get it back there. That's what we've done so we'll see.

Q. When you saw those first three home runs in the two innings, did you feel like your team had finally showed back up?

JOHN GIBBONS: Yeah, definitely. It was a good hit. Two opposite field home runs, too. That's when we are really swinging it well. That means they're staying on the baseball a little bit. Donaldson getting us on the board early, that kind of thing. I think that was important in this game, just like I thought last night, too, you know. When you're facing elimination, you know, you take the lead and makes it easier.

Q. You mentioned Loup earlier. At what point did you know he wasn't going to be available and do you know what his status will be for Game 5 yet?

JOHN GIBBONS: Yeah, I mean, he left before the game to take care of something. Yeah, I expect him to be back.

MODERATOR: Thanks very much, John. See you in Toronto.