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October 5, 2018

Masahiro Tanaka

Boston, Massachusetts - pregame 1

THE MODERATOR: We'll start with questions in English.

Q. Masahiro, I think your last regular-season start here you talked about how it was playoff-like intensity facing this lineup in this ballpark. What is more than playoff-like intensity? Is there such a thing?
MASAHIRO TANAKA: (Translated from Japanese) You know, I think I have an idea that it's going to be intense. But me personally I haven't experienced the Yankees versus Red Sox playoff atmosphere yet. So you know at this point it's a guess, but I'm sure it's going to be intense.

Q. Obviously, your first time in the postseason against the Red Sox. Are there memories of watching the Yankees-Red Sox from 1999 or '03 or '04, there's so much history here. Are there memories? and how much of an honor is it to be a part of it?
MASAHIRO TANAKA: (Translated from Japanese) Yes, so to answer your first question, yes, I have watched the Red Sox-Yankees game on television on broadcast.

And your second question was how you feel about going into this rivalry this historic rivalry?

Q. The honor to be a part of this series.
MASAHIRO TANAKA: (Translated from Japanese) Yes, it's absolutely an honor. Definitely an honor to be part of something like this. I think it would be even better if I can go out there and perform and lead the team to a victory.

Q. The success that you had in those three starts in the postseason last year, is that something that you can apply to this postseason, or is it not the same thing? Is that experience helpful this time around?
MASAHIRO TANAKA: (Translated from Japanese) You know, I think that experience does help, and maybe you rely on it a little bit. But my mentality right now is just go into this postseason freshly, as a new experience.

Q. Masahiro, when you look at your starts, what is the difference for you personally when you're sharp and good and when things get away from you?
MASAHIRO TANAKA: (Translated from Japanese) I think it's aggressiveness. I think when I'm on my game, when I'm doing well out there, I think I feel like, you know, I'm being able to really focus on the match-up and being aggressive there.

Q. You talked about the splitter not being as sharp as you wanted it to be the last couple of starts. What were you able to do since your last start, and do you feel better about where the pitch is right now?
MASAHIRO TANAKA: (Translated from Japanese) I think it's at a good place right now. You know, since I had my last outing, it's been a while. So I had that time to make the necessary adjustments.

I like where my splitter is at at this time. And hopefully I can have that pitch with me tomorrow when I go into the game.

THE MODERATOR: We'll take questions in Japanese now.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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