Ken Macha postgame interview

Ken Macha postgame interview

You've seen Kenny Rogers plenty of times, both on your own team and opponents' teams. Can you describe what you thought of him tonight?

KEN MACHA: Well, when you can throw any of your pitches at any time for strikes and you're throwing them with sink on the fastball and good bite on your curve ball and slider and great arm action on your change-up, it makes it difficult for the hitters. I just looked at Eric Chávez' last at-bat, and Kenny got behind two balls, no strikes, and he throws him a slider. As a hitter -- and he had a three-run lead at the time. I believe there was two outs, too. As a hitter you're probably saying, He's going to throw me all sliders. Next pitch he throws a fastball right by him, didn't even offer it to him, and ends up striking him out. I believe he struck him out. When a pitcher is doing that -- and apparently he was doing the same thing with the Yankees -- it makes it very difficult. Kenny is pitching well; that's what he does. I got up here today and said he controls the running game; he fields his position well. He does a lot of things extremely well.

How difficult is it now being down 3-0 and in the opposition's ballpark? How do you keep the guys looking just to one game, meaning tomorrow?

KEN MACHA: Well, I think the approach has always been just one game. I mean, that's what you look at. We have Bonderman, we have Haren. Encouraging thing coming out of this game is Rich Harden threw the ball very well except for a little rust there in the first two innings, and I kind of like the four guys we're going to go out there. Dan Haren has pitched a lot of good games for us this year, and then we'll go ahead and we have four good starters lined up. You can't give up, and our guys aren't going to do that. They're going to go out and play. My friend over there in Boston, Francona, they were in the same position and they wound up doing it. So it's not an impossible task. You've just got to do that one game at a time. You're right.

Q. Given the weather conditions, were you surprised at Rogers' command?

KEN MACHA: You know what, I'll bet you if you ask Kenny if he was cold out there, he's going to say no. Curt Young through BP today. They came out in the outfield and we talked about the bullpen and he was sweating. I don't know what inning it was, 6th or 7th inning, I looked at the flag and it was blowing straight down, so the wind stopped. It was probably reasonable.

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Have the Tigers done anything differently than you thought they could do or anything better in this series, or have they done anything differently? Have they done anything better than you originally thought they could do going into the series?

KEN MACHA: Really you should take a look at -- I guess everybody has that day marked on the calendar when Jim had his big clubhouse thing. I mean, you don't go for as long as they did, for a long period of time, and play as well as they did, build a ten-game lead in that division when you're not a solid club. Their starting pitching can just go out and dominate you; they've got a great bullpen. They've played good defense here, and they're going to hit a homerun here every once in a while. They've got a great ball club. I think they flew under the radar a little bit. They went up there against the Yankees, and everybody thought that the Yankees would take care of them real easy, but that's not the case. They've got a very good club and they're not doing anything any differently. I thought we pitched pretty well today. 1st inning with a walk and a couple hits, and then Rich settled down and then Monroe hit the homerun, and that was it. We pretty much shut them down. We know their pitching is very good. They pitched better than us today.

I think Rich's control was due to rest.

KEN MACHA: That's what I just said. I don't know, the first four pitches looked like they bounced in there. It's a shame, too. The next hitter he fell behind, and then they started a runner 3 & 2 and we vacated second base. Had he got ahead of the hitter -- I don't know, it's hard to see in the dugout. Perhaps it's a double play and we get out of that inning with no runs, but that's what happens when you fall behind and they've got some people that can run. That ended up in a hole and it ended up in two runs that inning. He walked a couple, I think, in the next inning, too, but he settled down after that. Some of the jams that he got out of in innings -- Pudge Rodriguez, he punched him out, threw a ball right by him. I really like the way he's throwing the ball. Hopefully we can get to him again. As I said, we've got four really good starters going out there, as they do, and this thing is far from over.

Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.