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October 24, 2004

Curt Schilling


Q. We heard a lot of reports that you were not even going to pitch tonight; that you were having problems even before the game started. Can you tell us just what your situation was?

CURT SCHILLING: I don't have the time to explain today. I just wish everybody on this planet could experience the day that I just experienced. I will never use the words unbelievable and the Lord again in the same sentence. Just the most amazing day of my life.

Q. I know you're a student of the history of the game and I guess tonight you became the first person to win three starts for three different teams in the World Series. What does that mean to you, in the history of baseball to achieve that?

CURT SCHILLING: I'll look back on that some day. You know, I think like the other 24 guys in that room, I'm so focused on what we're trying to do right now. There's not a whole lot of stuff entering my mind.

Q. Speaking of looking back I had the opportunity to look back at '93 a little bit and in the middle of July, I'm sure you remember it, you talked a lot about it, did you ever pull back on that experience when Daulton and Fregosi kind of told you to step up and what happened from there?

CURT SCHILLING: Well, I think that's one of the foundations of my career, going through that period of time. Being with that group of guys at the age I was at and the point in my career I was at. I think it's just one of the small little bricks in the wall that I've tried to build my career on.

Q. Just wondering if you could talk about Jason Varitek and how his role may have changed in the last couple of starts because of your physical limitations or physical status.

CURT SCHILLING: He's been every bit the leader he was all season. Jason is a guy that I feed off of him when I'm out there. I know he's putting down the fingers he believes in. I know he's got an idea, every time, every pitch, every at-bat. He's so in tune with what I want to do from the pregame meeting and the game plan session that we put together to the last pitch, and, you know, he's absolutely as much a part of anything that I've done this year as anybody on this team.

Q. In the sixth inning, Mueller was the last guy on the mound at the conference and you guys were talking, what did you say to one another? And secondly what is it about today that makes it the most unbelievable day in your life?

CURT SCHILLING: Well, I told Billy, I was going to get the next out. I mean, you can't understand unless you're in that clubhouse. I care more about these 24 guys than anybody I've ever played with. I'd do anything for these guys and I think I feel the same way about them when it comes to me. Very few times on the mound do you get a chance to pick up the fielding for the guys playing behind you, and there was a chance for me to do that. I wanted that to happen so bad, I wanted to get out of that inning and make it all right for him as much as anybody because I know how they feel when they make the errors behind you. As far as today goes, again, just so many things happened today. I promise you that when I walked out of that dugout today and headed to the bullpen the most shocked person in this stadium was my wife because I woke up at 7:00 this morning, which is a tip-off right there. I mean, I've never woke up at 7:00 in the morning for anything in my life, I wasn't going to pitch. I couldn't walk, I couldn't move. I don't know what it happened but I knew that when I woke up there was a problem. I called Chris and I talked to Jimmy and I left for the park, and I told her that it was not going to happen. I wasn't going to go out on the mound with the way I felt today. There's no way. And that's kind of when everything just started. I left my house, I'm driving to the park and anybody here that knows where Medfield, it's a pretty long haul. There were signs every mile from my house to this ballpark on fire stations, on telephone poles, wishing me luck. And I mean, I can't explain it. I got here, and got out of the car and I got into the trainer's room and Doc was here. I don't know the medical science behind it, but somehow we had put an extra stitch in this time because there was some issues we wanted to try and avoid from last time and we had caught a nerve in the leg, and we took that stitch out and things started to change almost immediately from that point. But I didn't -- I honest to God did not think I was going to take the ball today because I didn't think I could. And then everything starts happening. You start looking around at your teammates and understanding what you've been through over the last eight months, what it means to me. And I did what I did last time: I went to the Lord for help, because I knew, again, I wasn't going to be able to do this myself. And you know, thank God for Dr. Morgan and Chris Correnti and Jim Rowe and Dr. Theodore. They made it work, and it happened.

Q. There's so many people in the stands tonight, the two words we hear about you are courageous and hero. What's it like to have those words associated with you?

CURT SCHILLING: I'm proud of that. It's better than bum and idiot. I mean, this is -- I would do it all again. I mean, again, these fans, every memory I'm going to take away from this season revolves around their energy at this ballpark. On the way to the park today I was thinking about stepping on to the field and beginning that walk to the bullpen. Regardless of what happens in my career, I'll never get a feeling like that ever again in my life like I had tonight and I wanted that. I wanted it for my teammates, I wanted to be able to glorify God's name when all was said and done. And these fans were as much a part of that. They believe in me to the umpth degree and a lot of times I tell the other guys, "don't be the only guy not believing in yourself; everybody here believes in you." That's what I tried to walk out there with tonight.

Q. Dr. Morgan was quoted before the start of today saying he wasn't sure if your body would be able to handle this procedure a third time. I know you're hoping you don't need to start again, but if you do need to start can you do this again?

CURT SCHILLING: I don't know. I haven't thought about it. I mean, you know, I'm thinking about Pedro on the mound Tuesday in St. Louis. I'm a little beat up right now. It's the first time in my life I think I've felt my age. We'll see what happens.

Q. You know we're a stickler for details, can you tell us what time the stitch came out?

CURT SCHILLING: I don't know, sometime. I wasn't really looking at the clock. Early afternoon sometime.

Q. So when you started feeling it turn, did you start saying, "maybe"?

CURT SCHILLING: As soon as we alleviated that nerve issue, things changed drastically. I went from, again, hobbling to being able to walk. We had numbed it up a little bit and it just kind of went from there.

Q. If someone else was in your position on your team, you would be praising them saying that they were very courageous, are you courageous in what you're doing, do you feel?

CURT SCHILLING: I'm doing what any guy on this team would do. So no, on this team -- again, there's a kinship in that locker room that I think is a by-product of the environment we play in here. I've never experienced anything like it. I've been on some great teams and had some close teams, but this environment creates an entirely different scenario for us in the clubhouse. I don't question for a second any of these guys doing it for the team.

Q. Once you were on the mound tonight, how were you able to manage the pain, make your pitches and would you estimate? What percent, 75 percent, 80 percent? What do you think?

CURT SCHILLING: Well, the pain was not a very relevant issue. I was numbed up. Once we got past the initial thing this afternoon and I got numbed up, I'm not really dealing with a lot of pain out there. I just have to go in and understand that mechanically things are different and I have to be different. I have some different thoughts that I have to pitch with right now. I was more concerned with that lineup. I mean, you know, one to nine, that's as good of a lineup as I've ever faced. All of the stuff that we did pregame was to avoid going out there thinking about anything other than pitching. As far as a percent, I don't know. It was enough percent, I guess. You know, they got some balls up tonight, when they did, they hit them at people at the right times.

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