Oct. 28 Jim Leyland pregame interview

Q. With Alex, how badly is he hurt?  And could he pinch‑hit?

JIM LEYLAND:  I'm not sure about the pinch‑hitting.  I'd probably run him in there to catch if I had to.  But just as far as I know, the trainer told me just a little bit ago it's probably best not to go with him.  Obviously yesterday I talked to the trainer, felt like he was okay to go and okay to play because I don't want to go naked with a catcher in the World Series, obviously.  Meaning that playing him would have to take him out, then you're sitting there without another catcher, so I don't want to do that.  So I'm just going to go ahead and scratch him and play Laird.  In an emergency I'm sure he could go back there and catch the ball.

Q.  Do you remember being involved in another postseason where runs are this hard to come by?

JIM LEYLAND:  They're normally hard to come by in postseason because you're going to face a good pitcher pretty much every night.  Both teams have.  Game 1 was a little bit of a crazy game, really.  It wasn't like we figured it would be.  But the last two have pretty much been what you think about postseason play.  Runs are hard to come by.

Q.  Prince hasn't seen many pitches so far in the three games.  Do you sense that he's trying too hard, pressing a little bit instead of being patient like he usually is?

JIM LEYLAND:  No, I don't think so.  I think he's hit some balls hard that have been caught, and then he's had some other games where he hasn't swung quite as good.  When you get five hits, like I said last night, we're a team here.  There's no one guy that's hurting ‑‑ it's not a mistake not to get a hit, and I talked to my team about that today.  It's not a mistake to make an error.  It's a mistake if you're not prepared, and we're prepared.  Right now none of us are doing well enough.

So I don't really know the answer to your question, to be honest with you.  It would probably be a better question for him, but I think he's fine.

Q.  How much of a concern is Alex's injury in terms of whether or not he can continue in the series?

JIM LEYLAND:  Well, that would be a concern, to be honest with you.  But that's something for a little later, obviously.  But it would probably be a concern.

We're pretty much ‑‑ Alex is very tough, without question, one of the toughest I've ever managed.  If it's hurting, it's hurting.  But I would have to talk to our medical team about that before ‑‑ I don't want to make any silly statements right now about that because I don't know the answer.

Q.  After the game?

JIM LEYLAND:  After the game I'll talk to the medical people, the doctors prior to the game.  I've already talked to the trainer who recommended basically not playing him today, so I'll talk to the medical team when they arrive today and get their feelings on it.

Q.  As a manager you're trying to put your players in the best spots to succeed.  Is it a powerless feeling when you send out a lineup like yours, that is pretty well set, and you have to have confidence that the guys are going to eventually come through?

JIM LEYLAND:  Well, I think everybody talks about lineup.  That's a real big topic around Detroit most of the time.  But you really want to ‑‑ when you say whether you're going to change the lineup, I'm not sure sometimes what people mean.  Do they mean hit somebody in another position or do they mean put somebody else in?  With all due respect to everybody, Danny Worth, Santiago or Peralta, there's only so many changes you can make.  So I'm not really sure sometimes what people mean when they say "the lineup".  Sometimes they pick out a player that's struggling and they don't want him to play.  But I've never really figured out that lineup stuff too much.

Our lineup it what it is, and we're playing in a World Series.  I'm not afraid to make adjustments, but down three games to none, it's a little late for changing a lineup, I think.  We're here, and that's pretty good, the fact that we're here, and now we've got to try to figure out a way to win a game.

Q.  Quintin Berry was pretty hard on himself yesterday, said it was going to be hard to sleep, and he's back in the lineup today.  Have you talked to Quintin today and his expectations for today?  And is he okay emotionally?

JIM LEYLAND:  Well, I'm going to talk to the whole team a little bit about what they've done, what's in front of them.  It's not a pep talk, it's just ‑‑ like I said, guys are a little tough on themselves.  There's nothing wrong with making an out.  There's nothing wrong with striking out.  That happens.  That's been going on in the game for years.  Don't beat yourself up.  That's ridiculous.  Guys do, but don't beat yourself up.  That's not necessary.

Q.  What does it take for a manager‑general manager relationship to succeed?  And how would you describe your own relationship with Dave?

JIM LEYLAND:  Well, Dave and I ‑‑ I'll try to make this brief, but we met each other in Chicago when I was a coach for the White Sox and Dave was in the front service.  Later on he was in Montreal and I was managing in Pittsburgh.  We developed a friendship, we've developed a baseball respect.  He later on asked me to manage the Marlins.  We were fortunate enough to win a World Series together.

I think we have a great relationship.  I don't think there's any question about that.  We both have one thing in common, we want to win.  I don't think there's anybody better at putting a team together than Dave Dombrowski, and hopefully he feels that I'm the guy to manage it.

But the relationship is really good.  We're both competitive people.  I don't think we've had an argument since 2007.  So that's pretty good.

Q.  How does the outlook or your level of optimism increase knowing that a win tonight means you have Verlander tomorrow to send the series back?

JIM LEYLAND:  Well, I can paint a rosy picture, but the picture is not rosy right now.  I mean, our pitching is set up terrific, but you've got to win a game.  So I can stay up here and try to paint the best picture, but we've got to go out and win a baseball game somehow.  We've got Scherzer tonight, that's good.  We've got Verlander tomorrow, that's good.  We've got Fister the next day, that's good.  And we've got Sanchez the next day, that's good, but we've got to figure out a way to win a game so we can extend that.

I've felt great about our pitching all along, and I think it's been pretty darned good.  But we've just got to figure out a way to go out and win a baseball game.

Q.  What's the nature of Alex's injury?

JIM LEYLAND:  He got hit with a foul ball.  It's between the elbow and the wrist, and it's on the bone, and it's pretty sore.

Q.  Bruise?

JIM LEYLAND:  Yeah.  It's not broken.  I mean, hopefully, or I'll be embarrassed because I'd hate to think I caught a guy with a broken arm last night.

Q.  Miguel Cabrera was the only one that didn't speak to reporters after last night's game.  Obviously the team was disappointed.  Does that make you worry at all about where his mindset might be, to just kind of leave in that situation?

JIM LEYLAND:  No, I think you're not going to get the benefit of the doubt when you're on a national stage like this, and that's one thing that at some point I'll talk to him.  But I'm also going to say this, and I'm not defending anything, I'm just making a point:  As a manager you have to be careful.  I will deal with the situation and check into it, because you have to be there through the good and the bad.  You can't be on this podium only when you win.  When we're 0‑3, I've got to be up here and I'm not the happiest camper in the world.  However, you have a responsibility.

On other side of that coin, families are here, mothers are here, young kids are here.  I don't know that somebody might have been sick, I don't know that something wasn't right in the family, he had to get out.  As a manager you guys can all laugh and say, oh, you're covering for your player.  No, I'm not.  I'll deal with the issue because I want to find out what it was about.  But at the same time before I go rant and rave and talking to somebody about that, you've got to be a little careful with that.

So I don't know what the situation was, but I will address the situation.  But at the same time, I want to make sure I don't make a fool of myself.  The mother is out there, maybe she's ill or your father is ill, and you rush out of the clubhouse.  I don't know that that was the issue, I doubt that it was.  But we're all big boys, and you've got to face you guys whether you like it or not.  You can't just be here when everything is going well.  That's our responsibility.  Nobody from the Detroit Tigers ducks that.

We'll deal with that internally, but like I said, I need to find out a few more facts before I go national across the country and be saying something that I'd be sorry for.

Q.  Did you spend a lot of time thinking about whether to speak to him or not, and what to say?

JIM LEYLAND:  Well, let's just leave that one at this right now.  Let's not get in depth with this right now.  I think I addressed the question respectfully, and I don't want to get on a soapbox about that right now.  If you want to ask me about it later on a personal level, I'd be glad to answer your question, but I don't want to make too big a deal of that right now.  Just let me take care of that, and I'm sure at some point I'll have an answer for you.  I'll give you guys my phone number.  You can call me all winter, I'll give you an answer to it.