October 19, 2004
NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK: Game Six
Q. Given where you were a few days ago, can you comment on the prospect of getting to Game 7?
TERRY FRANCONA: For the last three days, we kept showing up saying we had to win today. And because of that, we'll show up tomorrow and say the same thing. Come to the ballpark and it's the most important game of the day. Carries a little extra weight.
Q. With Bellhorn's struggles, how much are you appreciating what he did for you tonight?
TERRY FRANCONA: I've appreciated what he's done for us all year. I think he's been very, sometimes under appreciated. He's done a lot of good things for our ballclub. Tonight was obviously huge. A home run off a guy we have not done much against last couple outings, ended up being enough for us to win. He's been a very good player for us, and like I said, somebody that we around this ballclub appreciate a great amount.
Q. It certainly appears that your bullpen has probably played as big of a role as anything in getting you to where you are; would you agree with that as far as the impact?
TERRY FRANCONA: Yes.
Q. And anything else you might want to say about them including the fact that you'll be using starting pitchers in your bullpen?
TERRY FRANCONA: We are using our entire ballclub. We have a 25-man roster and whatever it takes to win a game, we'll do. There's not one player or one pitcher that is not willing to do what we ask them to do to try to win. At this time of year, it can't be about individuals. It's got to be about our ballclub and everybody has been great about trying to chip in, whether it's steal, defense, pitch out of the bullpen, everybody has been great.
Q. Did you have any realistic target in your minds for how long Schilling might have been able to go in this game and did he surpass those expectations?
TERRY FRANCONA: Going into the game I really was pretty confident he was going to pitch well. I thought physically he was capable of doing that tonight or we would not have sent him out there. After the fourth inning, though, he started getting a little, cranky is probably not the right word but we kept an eye on him pretty closely. He got through the fifth and started throwing the ball pretty well. Got through the sixth. Really, he was doing a pretty good job. We were keeping a close eye on him but he was throwing the ball pretty good.
Q. Was there any consideration at all to letting him go back out for the eighth?
TERRY FRANCONA: No.
Q. Why not?
TERRY FRANCONA: Well, when you see Schill tell the umpire after the inning "good job" (Laughter.) -- I'm not sending him back out. He's had it. That was the plenty.
Q. Just talk about how important it was that Schill gave you seven, in order to -- you didn't have to empty out the bullpen again today?
TERRY FRANCONA: We were prepared to. I mean, there was a chance he could have come out after five. Doesn't mean we were to the going to try to win that game. We would have definitely had to extend some people. But the fact that he did go so deep, it made the eighth easier for Bronson, he faced the guys he was supposed to and we got to Foulke where we didn't have to extend him more than one inning. Gives you a chance to have some guys fresher tomorrow.
Q. Could you go over the two disputed calls, the home run incident and the interference play?
TERRY FRANCONA: The home one, again, in our dugout, we have a horrible view, but I saw Dale right away yelling it was a home run and when I got out there, Dale explained to me what happened and it was. All I cared about was just getting together and get the call right. It was very obvious after being out there for a minute or two, our whole dugout was empty and on to the field and you can see on the replay, just wanted to make sure we got it right. The play at first, you could see Alex take a swipe at the ball, just couldn't get on the field to say anything till the play was over because the guys were circling the bases.
Q. Both staffs have really been pushed to their limits in their series. Who do you foresee being the lead man tomorrow to take the hill at the beginning of the game?
TERRY FRANCONA: You mean who is our starter (Laughter.)? Is that what you're asking? We're going to make some phone calls, also. I watched Joe's press conference. (Laughter.) We're going to -- give us a little time. We'll get some things figured out.
Q. Back to Curt for a minute. He's already had many moments like this in his career being around as long as he has been. Can you give some perspective on what it is that he did tonight with everything that was swirling around, his injury and where you guys needed to win, this was one of those games that people will talk about for a long time, from his perspective?
TERRY FRANCONA: Well, I don't want to take the stage away from Schill. I don't think people have any idea, we've talked about it and talked about it and talked about it, and I'm sure you can ask Schill and he'll be able to tell you better. I don't think any of us have any idea what he went through to pitch tonight. I'm sure he'll get into it in a little detail. The medical staff actually sutured that area with stitches, and we knew they were going to do this. But, for him to go out there and do what he did -- you can talk all you want about that area, but his heart is so big. This was an amazing -- our medical people, like I said earlier jumped through hoops. They are to be commended because they, along with his heart and his wanting to compete made this happen, and then he stayed out there. I guarantee you he didn't feel that good but he competed and he pitched his Ass off.
End of FastScripts...