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October 4, 2017

Chris Sale

Houston, Texas - Workout Day

THE MODERATOR: Take questions, please.

Q. You've waited for this moment for a long, long, time. How does it feel that it's a day away?
CHRIS SALE: It's exciting. A lot of hard work goes into this, ups and downs of the season, battling the travel and all this other stuff. So to be sitting here right now is pretty fulfilling.

Q. Have you spoken to anybody who's been through what you haven't and turned to for advice about preparation or handling the whole atmosphere of a postseason start? Is there anybody who you've tapped into for that knowledge?
CHRIS SALE: Not really. We talked about it like throughout the year and stuff like that, but haven't really had a sit-down conversation. For me, just it's going to be hard not to but try not to put too much emphasis on it. Just try to treat this just like another game. You get a little amped up sometimes and that can kind of go crazy.

So I'm going to just try to go out there and pitch my game and act like this is just another one along the way.

Q. When you joined the team last year, how optimistic were you or not that you would be here in October ready to pitch in the playoffs? Was there a moment or two either in spring training or during the season where you thought this team, besides all the talent that was here, also had the right demeanor, the right attitude to be a playoff team?
CHRIS SALE: Yeah, I mean there was never a doubt that I thought we would not get here. Obviously from the outside looking in before I was with this team I always thought that they were a powerhouse. Going into spring training, seeing the guys in the clubhouse, seeing the culture, seeing the drive, that kind of just amplified it.

Then obviously we get going in the season, seeing the way we handle things and the way everyone handles their business personally and as a group just kind of solidified it. It was only, I don't want to say it was a matter of time, but we are a playoff team, obviously, and I think we all knew that from day one.

Q. How tough are the Astros' lineup?
CHRIS SALE: They're real good. We got to look at them just last week. So we know what we're getting ourselves into and we know what we need to do. So it's just about going out there and getting it done.

Q. You're seeing Verlander again. What's that experience like on this stage?
CHRIS SALE: He's tough. Like I said, as a whole we know what we're getting ourselves into. We know the work that we need to get done and I think we're up to the task. We fought hard all year. We have faced a lot of challenge, we have been backed in the corner and we have dealt with those situations pretty well. So hopefully continue that going forward.

Q. Having played against Pedroia your whole career before now. What kind of things have you learned about him just sharing in the clubhouse and did you go out with him this year?
CHRIS SALE: He competes. He's definitely the spark plug to this team. You think about the Boston Red Sox, he's probably the first name you think of. He's by definition a grinder. We all know this year and how it's played out and the things he's had to go through and it's admirable. He's as tough as they get, and to be able to have him in my corner is huge.

Q. Two questions related to rest. You've had a lot between, you'll have a lot between your last start and this one. What are the challenges and opportunities with that? Then going forward what will your thoughts be on starting on three days' rest potentially later this series or later in the postseason?
CHRIS SALE: Yeah, so I did have extended rest this time, which I think is good obviously this time of year. Catch your breath, get your feet underneath you. I threw a little bit more intensified bullpen this past week than I usually do to kind of get prepared, sharpen up a little bit. Three days' rest, I'm in. This is what I live for. I'm throwing until my arm falls off.

Q. You don't look at a lot of scouting reports. Does that change at all for the playoffs? Do you start to dive into more of that stuff than you would normally in the regular season?
CHRIS SALE: No. Like I said before, getting back to the previous question, I don't want to put any more emphasis on this than there already is. This is obviously playoff baseball so it comes with a lot more attention. But for me I'm going to pitch the same game, I'm going to go out there and do the same things I've always done. I'm not going to reach for another avenue that I haven't reached for in my entire career. So I don't think now would be the time to start doing that.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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