October 13, 2003
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS: Game Four
Q. Wakefield, do you think he's inside their heads a little bit now?
GRADY LITTLE: It surely seemed that way. But I tell you what, that was a well-pitched game by both pitchers. Mussina was on the top of his game and we were fortunate to come away with more runs than them tonight.
Q. Varitek came running in from the bullpen and then he goes running down the first baseline, a lot of running for that guy; talk about what it was like for him to run out that double-play ball?
GRADY LITTLE: I thought that was the biggest play of the game. Him rushing in from the bullpen, I think he got his legs loose enough to do just that. But he hustled; he always hustles.
Q. What did you think about putting up Varitek in that situation since he had so little success against Mussina in his career?
GRADY LITTLE: I was thinking he was due. He has struggled against Moose in his career as a lot of hitters have. He's been big for us in a lot of situations just like that throughout the season and we are hoping he will come through again.
Q. When the Yankees had second and third one out, Giambi hits the fly ball to center; are you surprised Soriano didn't try to beat the throw from Johnny?
GRADY LITTLE: That was a really shallow fly ball right there. With the potency they have in their line-up I'm sure they are banking on the next guy getting a hit.
Q. Todd Walker, I don't know what is in him right now but he's on a run and it's obviously been going through September, what's he going through right now, why has it happened and what are you noticing from him now that he was not doing when he was slumping?
GRADY LITTLE: He's a very confident hitter right now. He thinks he can hit anything that comes across the plate. That being the case, he'll be in there tomorrow.
Q. Did you instigate the checking of Jeff Nelson's glove and belt buckle; what was that?
GRADY LITTLE: Yes, we just got some indication that maybe we saw a little something out there. We didn't know, but we appreciated the umpires going to check.
Q. In his glove or his belt buckle?
GRADY LITTLE: Both.
Q. With everything that went on Saturday, can you talk about the adjustment the players had to make to come out today and play a pure game of baseball?
GRADY LITTLE: These are professional players, and like we said before, they are pretty good at turning the page and getting on with the business. There's a lot at stake right now and there's no time to be looking back. You just need to be looking forward and stay focused on what you need to try to do and every one of these players showed it out there tonight.
Q. Would Timlin have started the eighth without the run in the seventh?
GRADY LITTLE: Yes, he was at the top of his game there and in the sixth and seventh inning he threw very few pitches and threw with ease. He was going back out there regardless. We were just going to keep a close eye on him.
Q. Can you just talk about the way that Tim Wakefield has come through for you twice in this series, and also, maybe whether we might see him again in the series?
GRADY LITTLE: I can't really make any promises about what's to come in the series. But he has come through very big for us in the two games he's started here in this series. It couldn't happen to a better fella. This guy has pitched well for us and he's been very consistent throughout the season. We're just glad he's on our side right now.
End of FastScripts...