TONY LA RUSSA: He showed everything
he could do, fastball, third base side, running fast,
the first base side. He had good command of his
curveball. He got a couple of good outs, up and
down. He's got a lot of weapons and everything
moves. He had really good command.
You've seen Carpenter awfully good,
many times. As far as efficiency goes, low
pitch count, everything else, have you seen too
many better than this?
TONY LA RUSSA: You know, the best
compliment we can give him is we've seen him do
this the last two or three years over and over
again. Like last year, I remember Dave said, and
he's had so many great pitchers, it was the most
relentless streak of great pitching he'd seen.
He's so strong between the ears that
nothing fazes him. He has a great game, he gets
ready for the next one. Besides the physical talent
he's got a good head, good heart, good guts.
Can you talk about what a lift having
a pitcher go out and give you shutout inning
after shutout inning, just for the rest of the
team, confidence-wise and what a lift it gives
you in these kind of series?
TONY LA RUSSA: It has at least a
couple of significances, one, you're playing against
the other guy and you're not breaking through
against him. So that's the only way you're going to
have a chance to win the game. We caught a
break for the other two runs.
The other one is, our club comes to the
park the day he pitches and everybody has got a
real positive expectation. So that's a heck of a
burden for the No. 1 guy. When he carries it like
he does, everybody feeds off it. So there's the true
No. 1. Deserves a ton of credit because he has a
lot he has to live up to.
Jim Edmonds has a way of coming
through in the postseason. So far he's shown
that knack for the first three games of this
series, how does he do that?
TONY LA RUSSA: Well, he's coming in
here? It'll be interesting to hear -- however he
does it, we have to teach it to the other guys. But
he's got that quality where the bigger the moment,
the more likely he's going to concentrate, not get
distracted, and produce. He's done that ever since
he's been here from 2000. He really is a primetime
guy. And when you consider how he finished the
season, sore, not playing much, there's no reason
for him to have this kind of time, he's very talented.
Nobody on either club is having better at-bats.
Beats a left-hander today in the clutch. He's very
talented. In moments like this, he just
concentrates better than ever.
How is Carpenter's hand? And
secondly, Edmonds and the way that he's
hitting lefties is so much better in the
postseason than the regular season, can you
TONY LA RUSSA: Well, first with Chris,
you know, occasionally when it's been really hot,
he sweats, he gets dehydrated and he would have
a cramping problem. This was a strange one,
because he was cool. He just relaxed it a little bit
and it eased and then he didn't feel it again.
With Jim, over his career he's been a
tough hitter against left-hand pitchers. It's a
combination of his shoulder was bothering him and
sometimes the competition wasn't fair and they
were beating him up. When he's right, he hangs in
there as well as anybody.
You've had a great starting pitched
game in every one of the first three games of
the series. With the way the pitching is lined
up the rest of the way, do you expect that to
continue? On your pitching, is Reyes going in
the fifth game, if everything follows through, if
it's necessary after that?
TONY LA RUSSA: Well, I mean I think
our offense has produced enough. But one reason
that we've gotten from day 1 of the playoffs to
today, we're in decent shape has been our
pitching, both at the front and back end of the
game. And, you know, the good thing and the
good confidence that we all have in uniform and
we know that each of the guys, like Supp
tomorrow, whether it's Anthony or -- each of these
guys, they're working hard right through the end of
the postseason, nobody is backing off.
He'll come out there ready to go. But we
have a lot of respect for the Tigers, it won't be an
easy game. You go about it right and you see
what happens. All Dave is and I have talked about
is keeping our options open. Short series, that's
one of the beauties of playing in October, you get
to consider bringing guys back on three days' rest,
where you wouldn't think about it during the
season. Supp tomorrow and we'll see after that.
I understand Carpenter has been
good wherever he's pitched, but at home he's
been unbelievably good, any explanation
TONY LA RUSSA: Well, I think you said it
right. He's been good no matter where. He's had
great games in a row. I think sometimes stats are
hard to read and this year he's been lights out at
home. But he's the same pitcher no matter where
he goes. And I think really on the road he had a
couple of games where there were clumps of runs,
you take those games out of there and his ERA
would be in the twos as well.
Fourth inning, bases loaded,
nobody out, you get the fielder's choice. In
that situation how critical was it that Edmonds
comes through, and you don't allow Robertson
to get out of that without scoring any runs?
TONY LA RUSSA: I think it's probably the
biggest offensive key to the game because the
right-hander didn't get him home, get the force at
the plate. You've got a very tough match-up. If
you look at what Robertson has done against
left-handers, he's been very tough against
left-handers to produce something there. One run
would have been big, two was huge. Biggest
offensive contribution we've had, and it was Jim's
Everybody talks about the hitting
and the pitching, but how huge was the
TONY LA RUSSA: Well, I said before,
when a guy is pitching effectively and working
quickly, the defense gets on their toes, and our
defense likes working behind Chris because he's
competing and he's making pitches. We have a
very good defensive club when we play our game,
which is most of the time. And I don't think it's
coincidental that we played defense behind him
like that, you know when he pitches, because they
like getting back there and he works quickly and
makes pitches and they get good jumps.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.