Oct. 14 Mike Matheny postgame interview

 

Q.  You used six relief pitchers.  Are all of them available again tomorrow?

MIKE MATHENY:  Yeah, none of them threw too many pitches.  That wasn't how we wanted to do this.  Lance Lynn hit a wall, needed some help and the bullpen came in and did a great job.

Q.  That's the earliest you've gone to Rzepczynski this year.  Did you sense that we've got to win this thing right here right now with the lefties coming up now?

MIKE MATHENY:  Yes, that was the spot in the lineup we were able to use him.  There are a couple of spots in the top, but that situation kind of leaned towards using Zep.  He's done a nice job.  He finished strong, there's some ups and downs during the season, but he's throwing the ball well and that's good timing for us.

Q.  What happened with Lynn, did he just lose it or just a progression of bad luck or whatever?

MIKE MATHENY:  That's the danger of a guy that we've kind of yo‑yoed him a little bit with being a starter, being in the pen, and it's just ‑‑ it's tough to change gears like that sometimes.  And he's been doing a real nice job when the opportunity presents itself.  But you do kind of get out of your routine.  And he was having trouble with his secondary pitches.

But his fastball looked good, but when he was working behind in the count it serves into a team like the Giants' hand.  And they've got an explosive offense and made a strong run and put Lance in a hard spot.

Q.  Both homers came on two‑strike pitches and a number of other productive at‑bats.  Can you talk about that situational hitting?

A.         I think that's been a very much ‑‑ much of a strong suit for us all season.  And it's a beautiful thing when these guys trust themselves when they get to two strikes.  They can be a little more selective early in the count and then they're not going to panic when we do get to two strikes.  I give the guys a lot of credit, one.

I give Mark McGwire a lot of credit for putting a good game plan out there and helping to reinforce that idea of not being too aggressive early, and if you get to two just fight.  They all shorten up their swings and good things happen.

Q.  When did you sense that it wasn't going to be Lynn's night?

MIKE MATHENY:  That all happened pretty fast.  You could see it starting to go in that direction.  And we knew we couldn't let it go too far.  But the next thing you turn around and you're looking at four runs.

But in general we keep a close eye on everybody.  It doesn't matter how well they've been throwing or if there's any outside circumstances, we watch them close, and as soon as we think they need some help we're quick to do it.  Tonight it happened fast, though.

Q.  When the Giants started to put their rally together, you didn't get your bullpen up right away.  Did you feel like Lance still had it going and he was going to get out of it?

MIKE MATHENY:  Yeah, I did.  He was throwing the ball pretty well.  He had a couple of balls off their hands, a couple of balls off the end of the bat.  And then they started squaring some up.

But you look at the whole body of work, and at that point he still looked pretty good.  The ball was coming out of his hand.  He was getting underneath a little bit which has always been a caution sign.  And usually he can correct that, get back on top of the ball, and get depth to his sink rather than side to side run.  But once he got on the side and the ball starts elevating, it usually is tough to keep on the plate.  And it happened fast and couldn't recover.

But to me he's as tough as anybody we have between the ears and he'll go make his adjustments and he'll be ready to pitch when he gets his chance again.