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October 5, 2003

David Ortiz

Scott Williamson


Q. David would you mind talking about the at-bat in the 8th?

DAVID ORTIZ: In the situation I faced at Oakland when we were there, he was throwing me high fastballs, good fastballs, about chest high, and I was chasing it. And yesterday in the game, they just gave me the fastball and I was chasing it in for some reason. So today I guess I just had a better at-bat. I was trying to stay away from the pitch. The pitch, at 90 miles an hour, is tough to hit. He started me out like that and I know he's got to change it. I tried looking for the pitch at my hip level.

Q. Scott, how gratifying is it for you to be the difference in the series considering the bullpen has taken some abuse all year long?

SCOTT WILLIAMSON: I think all of us understood what we were getting into. I said earlier, before the series, we rely on the bullpen, and all of us guys got together and did the things that keep us at ease. I think we've all done really well. Mike Timlin did an unbelievable job last night with three innings. That's really hard to do in baseball. He kept us right there. Derek Lowe threw a great game. The bullpen is really confident right now, hey, if it comes on our shoulders, we're ready to take that task.

Q. David, given your struggles, how difficult was it to stay positive and wait for that hit to come?

DAVID ORTIZ: I don't think I was struggling. I'm just not hitting the ball where I want to. As everybody in this room knows, we faced the best pitching in the American League, and they make good pitches. It's not that I'm not taking pitches right down there, they're just making good pitches. If I was struggling I don't think I would have hit the ball to win the game. Don't give up on me people. Come on.

Q. Scott, why do you think you've improved in the playoffs?

SCOTT WILLIAMSON: I think there are a lot of reasons why. First of all, I've got my family issues and personal life behind me now. We've got that all situated. With my wife being sick, and my baby got sick, really bad. It's tough to go out and play baseball when you're worrying about your family. I had a talk with Tony and Theo and they really got the confidence back in me, that, hey, they haven't lost the confidence in me to go out there and do what I can do. They got me over here for a reason. When I left the office with Theo, I felt confident and went back to my old ways of throwing.

Q. David, is your knee giving you troubles at the plate at all?

DAVID ORTIZ: Yes, I'm a little sore. The first game we played, I hit a ball in center field, I went around the bag and I slipped on the bag. The doctor told me I have a little tendonitis. It's nothing bad, but when you put pressure on it, it hurts, so I've been getting treatment every day. I've been feeling good.

Q. Has it affected your swing or your stride at all?

DAVID ORTIZ: That was one reason why I was hitting standing up and I was chasing the pitches. I'm not used to standing up. I bend my knee and put pressure on it. Maybe that's one of the reasons I hit kind of up a little bit. I've been getting lower. Today I got a little lower and I was hitting the ball better. I was swinging at better pitches.

Q. David, the previous at-bat you hit the ball hard, was that something you could build on?

DAVID ORTIZ: This guy Rincon, he's tough. He has tough pitches. Every pitch goes in or goes away from you. Sometimes you want to have an idea what you want to do against him because he doesn't make that many mistakes. It wasn't a slider, but I was kind of low, and I stayed with it a little longer. Like I said, those guys, the is pitching good. You guys have to know we have one of the best offenses in the league, and we have been having problems hitting against this guy. That tells you how good they are.

Q. Jason said in the last couple of games in the regular season, he felt the pop coming back into your ball. Can you talk us through those last couple of games?

SCOTT WILLIAMSON: Obviously it has to do with my personal life. When you come get traded over to a new team, I think the first thing you try to do is try to show these people and the fans what you can do and how you can produce. I had a couple of good outings and, boom, the flood gates are open, I had a bad outing at Fenway. I'm not used to being booed off the field, so it was kind of a new experience for me. I think from there I started losing a little bit of my confidence, trying to press it a little bit. Trying to do too much, then from there it snowballed with my family. Like I said, I had a good talk with Theo and Tony and they put it into perspective for me. I came up the next time really at ease and threw really well against Baltimore and two innings against Tampa. I was ready to come into the playoffs. When Skip gives you the ball, like he has in tough situations and you produce, it creates more confidence.

Q. Any doubt in your mind you are the closer for this team?

SCOTT WILLIAMSON: I think we're all closers. Everyone down in that bullpen can be a closer at any time in the game. That's what we all think about. If it's coming into the 7th inning and you're the closer of the 7th inning, or coming into the 8th, same way, we have guys that throw different and we've been successful in the big leagues. When we get going, I think the bullpen is going to do really well.

Q. Todd Walker was talking about how hard it was to see the ball in the 8th inning because of the shadows. Would you give us your perspective?

DAVID ORTIZ: I was talking about it with somebody. I told them all you see is like a black point coming right at me. You can see the white on the ball by that time you can see it because you have got a shadow behind the pitcher and everything looks dark. When you have a shadow in between the pitcher and the hitter you just -- you can see when the ball come out of the pitch, but when it hits the shadows, it goes dark again. I don't know.

Q. Talk about what it's like on the mound in the final moments in a game like this?

SCOTT WILLIAMSON: I just took it as any other game for me. If I started worrying about the situation, you put extra pressure on yourself, so I just took it as my other times I went out there for save opportunities. I went out there and really relied on Varitek to call my game, and everything he put down I threw. Like I said earlier, I just rely on him.

End of FastScripts...

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