home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


October 4, 2004

Curt Schilling


Q. Curt, when you came to the Red Sox you had talked about how you always want to pitch every fifth day, every fifth day. Obviously, the numbers showed some phenomenal success when you pitched on five or more days rest. Has your opinion of extra rest changed at all?

CURT SCHILLING: No. I mean, you know, it's what you make it. I think some of the games that I throw on normal rest I was a pitch or two away from throwing well and just didn't make a pitch. So the way I feel now and the way the schedule sets up, I will be ready. I will be ready to pitch on three days rest if that's what we need to do.

Q. When you went to Boston you made a big deal out of going to that baseball town and putting on that uniform, sort of becoming involved in the Yankee stuff and things like that. Can you talk about what this sort of living in this organization has been like for you and maybe some of the relationships you have made or some of the situations you have in are that have stuck out for you.

CURT SCHILLING: When this all happened last winter, it all happened, I think -- or the reasons behind it were all for what starts tomorrow. These guys were in game 7 five outs away from the World Series last year, so I think anything short of being in the World Series this year will mean that we have fallen short of where we should go. I understand that if I don't go out and do the things that I have done in the past in October, that the season will be a wash in a lot of people's minds as far as my contributions here. I understand that. And I think that's what they expected of me when I came here. As an environment, it's unlike anything I have ever been a part of. Being on the field, being a home team player in Fenway Park was an unforgettable experience every single time I took the ball, and I am just -- would love to see what it would be like to have the ball in October in Fenway Park and get a feel for that, and that's my goal. But there is a lot of work to be done to get to that point. All of it, the atmosphere, the energy, the adrenaline. Every night, first inning, two strikes on any first hitter of the game, 35,000 people on their feet. They lived and breathed with every success and every failure of every guy on that team, sometimes to a fault, and I have never been involved in anything like it.

Q. Curt, when you were really hurting early in the season, through much of the season, how did you approach it? Did you ever say I am going to muddle through this, I am going to get to the end of this thing? Or it was pretty close that you weren't going to make it --

CURT SCHILLING: Well, I don't know if it was ever at that point. I was brought up at a time when I was a young player way back when Tony was playing that you made sacrifices for the greater good. There is a difference between being hurt and being sore, and that you were going to be sore all the time, and it was a matter of just dealing with it, and as I have gotten older, I have realized that that's the way it is. You never wake up feeling perfect anymore, but you don't worry about it, you don't think about it, because the game and what comes with the game, the adrenaline and all of the stuff that comes with the game tends to make you feel all right once the game rolls around. And for this season it's been that way every time I have taken the ball. You know, the medical staff here has had me ready to play, Chris Correnti and Dr. Morgan have done a phenomenal job taking care of the things I never knew about when I was 27. You didn't have the aches and pains that you have at 37, and I think a lot of that stuff is what you make it, and we made it something that we could deal with.

Q. You pitched well against the Angels this year, but could you just talk about the challenge of this lineup and what makes them so tough.

CURT SCHILLING: Like a lot of American League teams, these guys are so deep from top to bottom. Every guy in the lineup can do something to put a runner in scoring position or to drive a runner in. There are some very drastically different hitters in this lineup as far as approaches and selection and location and stuff like that. It's a lineup to test your repetoir against every time around, and I played a little bit against Scios at the end of his career, and you watch the team that he is managing and they play like he played. They play the game right. They do things -- as a catcher, he understands what it takes to disrupt a pitcher, and I have felt like against a club like this I had an advantage in being able to hold runners, and not allow the running game to give the game different momentum, I think, is a big thing. These guys run, they hit and run, they do a lot of National League stuff and you have to be able to defend against that and pitch against that, and that's what I know is going to be the case tomorrow.

Q. The challenge of facing Vladimir and what that's like.

CURT SCHILLING: Well, he is Barry Bonds with less patience, I think. You have to be -- he is one of those guys that I can remember being a young pitcher, and a lot of times guys would try and water down the great players, saying "This guy can be pitched," because they didn't want anybody to feel nervous or anxious, and he is just one of those guys that it's black and white. You have to go and make great pitches to get him out and you have to do that in different locations and different spots with different velocities on a consistent basis, and keep the barrel and bat away from the baseball.

Q. Curt, you were one of Terry Francona's advocates to come in and manage this year. Can you talk about how he compares to when he was in Philadelphia and, also, how did he handle the unique challenge of managing in Boston.

CURT SCHILLING: Well, I wouldn't do it. He has obviously changed a lot. You go from a team that was as bad as we were for the extended period that we were bad to walking into a team that was five outs away from the World Series and you have got to be different, I think, right from the get-go. I think his personality has allowed him to survive, I guess is the word, literally survive the season, but especially given the personalities on this club. It's a diverse group of guys with such a diverse group of mentality that somebody like Terry is going to do all right. He just never -- he rode the roller coaster but never got too high or too low, and I think that that was a signal that we all got. I mean, we played 500 baseball for about 90 straight days, and as frustrated as we were, it never became a problem. He just made us understand that at some point we were going to have to get it done, and if we didn't do it sooner rather than later, we weren't going to be playing in October. It's -- I am sure he has got fewer -- well, less hair, if it's possible, than he did when the season started, but I can't imagine what kind of a grind it's been for him, given, you know, the media's take on Red Sox baseball and how he is the fall guy for every bad pitch, bad play, bad swing that we have taken this year for the most part. It's unfortunate, but I guess this is the litmus test now on whether they are actually going to like him or not in Boston.

Q. Terry was just sitting here talking about how there is really no such thing as any regular season game for you, you always look for some extra motivation to crank yourself up that much higher. Do you do those things to get yourself to the point where you will be at tomorrow night, or is there one notch higher now that the playoffs start?

CURT SCHILLING: I think starting tomorrow you have to be better than you were. I have always felt like I needed to be better than I was over the previous six months. But I have told guys in Boston for seven months now, my first start in Spring Training and the routine that I go through and the preparation that I do is going to be the exact same routine that I do tomorrow, starting when I get up and have breakfast and get ready to come to the park. The day will go exactly the same way as the other 39 or 40 times I have started since Spring Training. The only thing that will change will be the ramifications of winning or losing tomorrow's game and the adrenaline, the energy. It will be here. I get paid an extraordinarily large sum of money to work about 40-some times a year, and I just feel like if I don't put every ounce of my being in that game that fifth day, I am cheating somebody, and that was something that was taught early in my career. You respect your teammates and the opponents, and to do that, I have to do what I do and feel like I am doing it right.

Q. As far as the level of confidence you guys have right now, does it remind you at all of how it felt in Arizona?

CURT SCHILLING: No. I don't look at the two teams as anything similar, and yet there are some similarities that I like, but I don't know. I don't know -- I think the confidence level changes game to game here in the post-season. Momentum truly is the starting pitcher that day. We feel good about our club. I feel good about our chances in doing this, but, you know, you got to beat three incredibly good teams to get to your final goal, and you got to do it in a consistent manner, and you got to play better baseball than you played all year long.

Q. Getting back to Vladimir, when a guy is on a chair like he has been for the last week or two, does it change your approach at all as opposed to maybe how you pitched him mid-season?

CURT SCHILLING: We will see. We will see tomorrow.

End of FastScripts...

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297