Oct. 21: Bumgarner, Pence postgame interview

Oct. 21: Bumgarner, Pence postgame interview

Q. Hunter, before your first at‑bat you have three hits, but before your at‑bat a player was thrown out at the plate for your second out. I wonder, did you feel that this inning could slip away with us leading only 1‑0 or did you have any of that at in your at‑bat?

HUNTER PENCE: First of all, I was excited we scored a run; that's a good feeling. Yeah, you've got to take some of those chances. You have to take risks in this game. I thought it was a good call to bring Buster. They just made a good play and that happens. But once that happened, in my mind, the situation was two outs, runner on second. This is an opportunity you've got to try to find a way to get him them in.

Q. Madison, how big was it for you to have that cushion when you went out there for your first inning?

MADISON BUMGARNER: Yeah, it definitely makes it a lot easier on you when you can go out there and you know that our guys have already scored three runs. Just makes it easier to go out there and make pitches and attack guys and try to get ahead. You're not so worried about leaving one over the middle at that point because we do have a three‑run cushion there.

But I felt pretty good, and the command was good. So we were making pitches there all night really.

Q. First of all, could I ask you, just overall, the way the team played tonight, how impressed were you with the way the Giants performed overall tonight?

HUNTER PENCE: You know, it's definitely a good feeling to come out and play the way we did here, because we knew it was an intense atmosphere. It was a lot of days before both teams played. So I think Blanco's leadoff at‑bat really was amazing. Not only that first inning, but also the way Madison came out and pitched the way, getting us in, pretty quick innings. It kind of settles you into the ballgame and makes it feel pretty good.

Q. Madison, we often try to get inside the heads after a great performance. Did you just feel you had it tonight? Did you feel dominant tonight? Because you certainly looked that way on the field.

MADISON BUMGARNER: You know what, I felt pretty good. It was just about going out and making pitches and executing. I know that's a boring answer, but for me, that's all it is, is I'm just trying to make pitches and take all that other stuff and push it aside and just concentrate on moving the ball around, getting ahead, and getting outs and getting us back in the dugout.

Q. Madison, first off, can you take us through the bottom of the third. You were in a tough spot and really battled through that and kept the Royals off the board. Second thing, you had a couple different scoreless‑inning streaks that came to an end tonight. Could you talk about the pitch and how you felt about this amazing streak that you've been on?

MADISON BUMGARNER: Yeah, the third inning, first of all, my teammates picked me up way more often than I get a chance to pick them up. Those strikeout situations, we were going for them and trying to keep them off the board. That's nice. That is one of my favorite things to be able to do in baseball is to work through a situation like that one.

It's tough not to pay attention to a streak when you've got it going. I don't care. I'm not here trying to set records and keep streaks going and whatever, but you do know about it. A World Series game is not something you exactly forget about. So you remember what they were. But tonight, that was the last thing on my mind. We're up 7‑0, so I'm just trying to compete and go after guys and be aggressive.

Perez is a big, strong kid. It was a pretty good pitch. I haven't went back and looked at it, but obviously there were probably other choices that may have worked out better, but with the game going the way it was, I just wanted to be aggressive and go after guys.

Q. You threw a couple of those 67‑mile‑per‑hour curveballs. Buster says he doesn't really know when they're coming. What is your thought process on that? How many times have you thrown that? And why do you throw it when you do?

MADISON BUMGARNER: Just going off the way the hitters look in their previous swing or what kind of feel I have for it. It's just changing speeds, you know. That's really it. I usually decide after the pitch I've thrown before depending on what happened.

I don't do it too often. There are a lot of games that I don't throw any of them. So just depending on the situation and how it feels, just to give it a different look.

Q. What makes this club such a dominant postseason club on the road?

HUNTER PENCE: Well, thank you. That's a tremendous compliment. I don't totally have any answer for the success that we've had. It's been an awful lot of fun, and it's been a privilege to be a part of 2012, the postseason run, and the run that we're a part of right now and this opportunity to be in the World Series this year.

But there is no one way. Just you feel like we have a group of guys that really care, that really love to play the game. And it's kind of our motto to play together, play as a family, and love and enjoy every bit of it.

So, yeah, if I had any answer other than that, it's just we go and compete together as a unit.

Q. Hunter, you may have answered it there a little bit, but you seem to be a great fit with this team and the city of San Francisco from the moment you got there. What is it about the team and the city that connected with you so quickly and made you want to stay there for a while?

HUNTER PENCE: Well, I mean, the games in San Francisco, it's really a magical atmosphere. I think that the type of people that run this organization and the type of players that are here, it's just a group that I felt like I fit in there. There are a lot of accepting people of different personalities, and really I've just been extremely grateful to have had the opportunity to come over here and play in front of the fans, the energy that they bring and just all the guys there. They're all unique and different, but it's a bunch of guys that have the same interests as far as getting out there and getting after it. They have the same vision and belief and are willing to grind.

I think that looking around the locker room on a daily basis, there are guys that are willing to give everything they have for that game for each other, and that's kind of how I try to play each game.

So it just feels like a good fit to me.

Q. Hunter, when you guys go up 3‑0 there in the first inning, with what you've seen out of Madison this season and especially this month, do you start thinking that's pretty much going to be it? What have you seen about him that makes him successful, where some of the other star pitchers this month haven't been so successful?

HUNTER PENCE: Well, no, absolutely, when you've got Madison on the mound, even when it's 0‑0, you still feel very confident. But at the end of the day you still ‑‑ for me personally, and also just talking to all the guys, is every inning we're trying to be as focused as we can. Whether we score or don't score, and we take the field and Madison's taking the mound, it's get locked in on D, no matter what we've done offensively until the last out of the game is made.

So with that being said, yeah, we have all the confidence in the world with Bumgarner on the mound, no matter what the score is. I honestly try to block that out and just be as focused as I can and know the situation and where I need to be on a pitch‑by‑pitch basis.

What was the second part of your question?

Q. About what you see in him being so successful in October, when some aces haven't been successful?

HUNTER PENCE: You know, it's tough because I can't really compare him to who has not been successful. But from what I've seen from Madison is he's just got this ‑‑ first of all, he works hard and he prepares. He's extremely prepared. He's extremely mentally and physically ‑‑ it starts in your off‑season, it starts in the weight room, it starts in the mindset. He's got a mindset that he's going to come after you. He's got that hard‑nosed, pitcher mentality, and he doesn't let any of the magnificence that's going on around, like the World Series, this is the ultimate dream as a baseball player. There is no bigger stage. But he's just Madison Bumgarner. It's a game of baseball that he's worked for, and I feel like that mentality, it's not easy to do because there is so much emotions attached to this game.

Q. Hunter, this is a notoriously loud, difficult place to play. I'm wondering when you hit your homer, how aware you were of how quiet it got and what that feeling was like when you were rounding the bases?

HUNTER PENCE: No, it was really loud in my head (laughter).

I say this, and I truly mean it, sometimes my mind when I'm playing the game or our team is doing something good, it's like an emptiness. I don't know what's going on around me. And a lot of times my family will get mad at me. Because even if I'm watching TV and really watching the show, I won't hear anything that's being said around me. It's just something that I have. It's kind of a blessing and a curse at home. I get people really angry with me, but on the field it works out good.

Q. Against an ace‑type guy like Shields that you don't see a ton of, in the 14 or 15 pitches leading to your at‑bat, how much are you learning? Tonight specifically, what things were you watching for and what were you able to learn? You guys stacked some pretty good at‑bats on top of each other leading to yours.

HUNTER PENCE: Yeah, it's definitely good for each at‑bat, the more pitches you can get out of the pitcher, and especially if you can get on base with having one of those long at‑bats. Just think of each pitch as a wind sprint. This is what the pitcher is doing. It's taking a little chink out of them. But at the same time, the only thing I can really see ‑‑ because in this game you can never be fixated. Sometimes people get into patterns, but very rarely in this game do they ever do that. The only thing that I'm trying to see is the timing of each of his pitches. Kind of in my mind, you're watching his fastball, okay, it's about this time. You're watching his off‑speed, it's about this time. When you get in the box it's totally different than any angle you ever see.

So, really, that was about it. It's really good to get those at‑bats, and put the wear and tear on the pitcher. You'll see if you can do that in innings. If you can have long at‑bats and get on bases, it's setting the next guys up really good, and that's what the top of our order did.

Q. Hunter, do you feel more comfortable this postseason than did you in 2012? You mentioned in '12 you had only been there a couple months. Do you feel any differently? Do you feel any better about your stroke? Because you didn't have great numbers in the postseason in '12.

HUNTER PENCE: You know, just play each game. I don't know if I'm necessarily more comfortable, but I definitely in 2012 ‑‑ each year is unique and different. But I know the second half my swing didn't feel that good. I found a way to, I think, that year to drive in runs, but I didn't get many other hits than those opportunities.

So I don't know about the postseason. I don't even remember it. It's too long ago. But right now I feel all right.

Q. Besides what Hunter does on the field, what does he do in the clubhouse for the group and personality? They say he talks a lot during team meetings.

MADISON BUMGARNER: Yeah, he holds most of the team meetings. Yeah, I mean, it would be hard to imagine him being able to be any better of a teammate or supporter for his guys. I mean, he comes in every day the same guy. Couldn't be in a better mood, and ready to compete. Nobody works harder than him. I mean, it's been an honor and a blessing to have him as a teammate. Yeah.

HUNTER PENCE: I paid him to say that. No, I'm just kidding (laughter).

Q. Can you talk about the team's defense a little bit. Blanco made that great play behind you. You made three yourself. You caught one line drive, knocked down another, turned a double play. Crawford had that rare blip for an error, but I think the defense behind you guys is part of the unsung story of the team, isn't it?

MADISON BUMGARNER: Yeah, I think so. We're used to it, but we don't get a whole lot of credit really anywhere. We don't need to hear it. We know what kind of team we have, obviously. It's a well‑rounded team. It's good up and down the order. Defense is great. We've been known for pitching and defense in years past, but the last few years, especially this year we've had a good offense, too. And defense has always been really good for us.

Q. Can you talk about the plays you made?

MADISON BUMGARNER: You know, just caught a line drive and knocked down another one and turned a double play. It wasn't really special. I'd prefer them to not hit it back at me, but that's the way the game goes. So you've got to be ready for them.

Q. How easy is it for you to get all of the crowd and all of the atmosphere out? It was obviously a crazy atmosphere for days leading up to this, then you go out. How easy is it for you to put all that out of your mind?

MADISON BUMGARNER: If you're worried about how loud the crowd is going to be, then you're in the wrong place mentally and probably in the wrong business. But it makes it a lot easier the fact that every single game we play at home is like this or louder. I mean, it's like that every day for us.

Q. How crucial is it going to be to take advantage of a rookie like Yordano Ventura tomorrow in Game 2 and going up 2‑0 back home?

HUNTER PENCE: Well, I think he's had a tremendous amount of success. I don't think we're going to go out to the game tomorrow undermining the talent and what he's been able to accomplish this year. So he's got an electric arm. I haven't watched the film on him, but we faced him a few times in Spring Training, and I know back then he was throwing like a hundred.

So you're facing the best in the world. These are the two teams that went all the way to the World Series and won their leagues, so we're going to have to watch some film and get prepared and get out there and compete.

But I expect him to be everything as advertised. Electric stuff, and going to have to find a way to get some runs and play behind Peavy.

Q. This is for both of you: The Royals have shown a resiliency the whole postseason, getting down in games, winning in extra innings. You guys jumped on them from the start and really gave them no life this game. How do you carry that momentum into the next game and maybe keep them deflated, after they've suffered their first loss for an inexperienced postseason team?

MADISON BUMGARNER: For me, I mean, they've obviously been on a great run. You don't get here without that. For me, at least, my concentration is on what I need to do, and I think our team is concentrating on what they need to do, not what the Royals are doing and what they need to do. We're concentrating on going out there and competing and winning games, getting guys out, scoring runs. So, that's for them to worry about.

HUNTER PENCE: Yeah, basically just focus on black out all results. If our focus is on what the momentum is, then you're not focusing on being ready for the game and the task at hand. So we're going to black out whatever happened tonight. Fortunately we had a good game, but that's in the past and forever gone. We've just got to get ready for one game and immerse ourselves in as much focus and preparation in the game, which is tomorrow.

Q. What television shows do you focus in on at home?

HUNTER PENCE: Well, if there's a sports game on, generally if I'm watching the baseball game or football game, or if I'm playing a video game or something, I don't know. I like literally don't hear anything else around me.

Q. Any specific favorite shows?

HUNTER PENCE: The only specific thing I have is my dad yelling and screaming since I was a kid and being really upset with me. Sometimes my girlfriend, too. So, yeah.