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October 3, 2019

Taylor Rogers

Tyler Duffey

New York, New York - Workout Day

Q. Given that Rocco hasn't even announced a Game 2 starter yet and you guys have won some big games with bullpen games, are you expecting this series to have almost a bit of a wild feel to it where anyone could pitch at any time?
TAYLOR ROGERS: Yeah. That's kind of the bullpen's duty on any given day. You kind of expect the unexpected and just be ready for anything. I don't think that's a different plan for us at all. I don't think we have to prepare any different, especially with the way the bullpen guys operate. The phone rings, we go in there. We don't ever have any time to know what's going on anyway.

TYLER DUFFEY: Once we get out there, it's all hands on deck, especially this time of year. We've had to pitch for some starters here and there on occasion. I think we've done that pretty well. We've had a lot of young guys show up and get some good outs for us. I think all of us are ready for whatever needs to be done here this series.

Q. Taylor, you pitched in the Wild Card Game 2 years ago here. How much can that experience motivate you for this series?
TAYLOR ROGERS: I wouldn't say that experience necessarily is extra motivating than just being at playoff baseball. I think the experience is good, having something to revert back to or something to kind of visualize for this series maybe, but I think experience certainly helps. I don't know if you call one game experience or not, or even one batter. I think I only faced one guy. Maybe it's nothing to revert back to (laughter).

Q. Taylor, when the season started, no one really knew who the closer was going to be. You've taken that role. Have you thought at all about how that's happened, and are you ready to pitch in the ninth inning in a one-run game here at Yankee Stadium?
TAYLOR ROGERS: Yeah. That's kind of been -- that was kind of my goal in the beginning of the season, was to be the closer. I felt like it was up for the taking, so I think I was able to just do well at that, then wanted to gain the trust of teammates and coaches, and I think that's what gives me confidence out there is that they trust me to be in that position.

Q. And pitching at Yankee Stadium ninth inning?
TAYLOR ROGERS: Pitching the ninth inning anywhere gives me confidence.

Q. You guys have both known Jose Berrios for a long time. How much confidence do you guys have in Jose in Game 1?
TYLER DUFFEY: I think he's ready to pitch. He lives for these moments. He's always shown him when we needed him. I guarantee he'll be firing on all cylinders come Friday again. I guess that's tomorrow. He's going to be locked in, ready to rock. Everybody in that locker room is going to be ready. I think we're excited about this. We've been playing great baseball all year, and now it's time to really show everybody what we've got.

Q. We've talked to Tyler a lot about it, but Taylor, judging just from the standpoint of a teammate, what's it been like to watch Tyler reinvent himself and kind of his transformation over the last few years to get to where he is now?
TAYLOR ROGERS: Yeah. Well, he's my throwing partner, so I like to say all the credit is over here.

TYLER DUFFEY: At least half.

TAYLOR ROGERS: No, it's been awesome. I think just being more of a teammate, more of a friend, it's awesome to see. Everybody knew that it was in there. I think that kind of takes away the value of it is because I kind of thought that that's what he always had in him. So I guess the shock value to me is a little lower than most people.

Q. Are you guys having some veteran to you? I'm wondering about, like, a Smeltzer, a Dobnak; if you verbally have said things to rookies about what games can be like in the postseason or atmospheres or if any words need to be said in those situations and to those younger guys, or if it's just a scenario that sort of happens naturally and they experience it naturally? Like, have you shared your words of wisdom?
TAYLOR ROGERS: I'm not necessarily sure. We don't have much credibility in the playoff arena, but I was talking to Sergio, and he was saying sometimes with the playoffs, it's -- everybody's like, we've got to have playoff experience. We've got to have playoff experience. Well, how do you gain playoff experience? Everybody's going to go through it the first time, and there's no words or nothing that you can tell people that are going to help. I think you just kind of have to go through it yourself and figure it out yourself.

If you're prepared, then I think that's the best way to go about it.

Q. What do you guys kind of expect from this series if you base it off the season series?
TYLER DUFFEY: It's going to be fun. Everybody saw those games we played at our place. I wasn't here for the beginning of the year, but we both hit home runs. We've both got good pitching. I think it's going to be a great series to watch and a great series to be a part of. There's already a lot of hype from our side coming back here from Minnesota. People are worried, but I think we'll be okay.

Q. For both guys, how much -- also, when we talk about home runs from both these teams, from a pitching standpoint, how much pride goes into trying to stop that, as well, and not just accept the fact that we might be watching a bunch of 16-15 games?
TAYLOR ROGERS: That's the goal every day from the pitching side is keep the ball in the ballpark. I think the way baseball's gone the last couple years is either strikeout or home run. It's professional baseball, Major League Baseball. You make a mistake, you're going to pay for it.

I think it's fun from the pitching side to try to get those hitters out, no matter who they are, and just make your pitches, and hopefully we end up hitting more homers than they do at the end of the day.

Q. I know you guys don't have a lot of history, but the people back home watching this have a lot of history with the Yankees and have seen what happens to Twins teams in the past. Can you reassure Twins fans that you guys can carry this and help them out with their misery?
TAYLOR ROGERS: Well, I think, for a lot of us in the clubhouse, aside from the Wild Card game -- I was talking to Tyler on the way over here and talking about the history the Twins and the Yankees have, and I was trying to figure out how to get a higher ACT score to get into college the last time these teams played.

I know that Twins fans have a lot of memories, but we don't. So I think we're going in with a fresh slate, clean slate, and it's a very positive slate.

Q. Did you get a higher ACT score?

TYLER DUFFEY: It's funny, coming up through the minors, we weren't even thinking about being here, other than that Wild Card game when the Twins were playing the Yankees. A lot of us came up in the minors facing a lot of these guys in this lineup. A lot of the faces you see on TV and you don't really hear so much about us, but at the end of the day, we're all just baseball players playing baseball. I think that has been our thought process in the clubhouse at the end of the day.

We're going to hit a lot of homers. We're going to score a lot of runs, and they do the same thing. So it's just another game ultimately. I think, keeping that thought process going into it, I think it's -- I don't know if it's an active I'm trying to do this or we are, it's just more let's go play baseball and see where the ball ends up when we're done.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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