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November 4, 2001

Randy Johnson

Curt Schilling


Q. Were you with what Randy was able to do a day after pitching 105 pitches?

CURT SCHILLING: Well, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't somewhat impressed, but I don't doubt the guy. I know him too well. He's got -- he's a warrior, has been since the day I met him, and that relief appearance is everything you ever need to know about Randy Johnson. You know, what he's done for us this year and what he's done for me on a personal level is something that I don't know that I'll ever be able to repay him.

Q. Would you talk about your game, how you felt after seven innings, how you felt after Soriano's home run and how you felt about coming out when you did?

CURT SCHILLING: I felt fantastic today. Warming up, going into the game, I felt great. I felt great all the way through until I got the hook. The ball that Alfonzo hit out was -- I didn't think it was a bad pitch. I looked at it on the replay, and I shook off a fastball up and away, in my mind I was two pitches away from going to that pitch and I felt like if I made a good split pitch right there and bounced it, I would get a swing and a miss. You know, I don't know what to tell you. I was crushed when he hit it because I thought it was a good pitch. You know, going down 2-1 at that point in the ballgame with that bullpen, it's not usually an antidote for winning but we found a way.

Q. How did you feel about coming out?

CURT SCHILLING: I was not getting the job done. When you are not getting the job done, you are supposed to come out of the game. I made some bad pitches, and I thought I made some decent pitches and they got hit, but I felt great.

Q. Your thoughts on this World Series, how it was played, describe it?

CURT SCHILLING: We don't have that much time. This was -- this was, this was good for baseball, great for baseball. We beat the best team in baseball, to win a World Series. It took 30-some odd guys eight months of hard work and you just can't imagine the feeling of looking around the room and knowing that every single guy in that room is responsible for that World Series trophy that is now in the Arizona Diamondbacks possession. It's a proud feeling.

Q. Randy, have you ever been so sore in your life while pitching in a game?

RANDY JOHNSON: Sore? When you go out there, it's all adrenaline. You know, this is what everybody in that clubhouse has played for and I was telling my wife today, I mean, you go all the way back to when spring training started February 14, and we are now, what, November 6 or 7. It's an endless season, up and downs. You know, two teams to get to the World Series, and it was very fitting that the Yankees be in the World Series because if we are going to be champions you want to face the best, and we did. Came down to the seventh game. It was great pitching essentially, for the seven games. You're up against arguably the best reliever in all of baseball and you are down to your last couple of outs. You know, of all people, Tony Womack does it again for us, to get the base hit to keep everything going. But we never gave up and that was -- that's very fitting with this team, with the veterans that we have, the character of the veterans on this team, we never gave up. The fans played a huge role in this, being at home. It was no surprise that the home team won every game and I think that pays a lot of attributes toward the fans playing a big role.

Q. Could you both describe your emotions as that bottom of the ninth unfolded, starting with you guys down with Rivera pitching, odds against you, could you just take us through that, what you were feeling?

CURT SCHILLING: I wouldn't move on the bench. I wanted to get up and watch for the whole inning, but I was playing the luck seat. I just -- when Gracy led off with a hit, I was thinking, "okay, maybe we've got a shot." As the inning unfolded and when they threw the ball away at second, I thought we had a shot. But, I mean, the guy has just been lights out. You just never know what to expect. What Randy alluded to earlier, this is a team of incredible character. You cannot measure the determination, the heart and the pride that we play the game with. Every guy that went to the plate in that inning, I knew believed that he was going to win the game for us. It's a pretty cool attribute to have and it's one that we played with all year long.

Q. I realize it's six years ago, but would you compare this relief performance to your relief performance against the Yankees in '95?

RANDY JOHNSON: This is the World Series. Obviously, you know, it's still an adrenaline rush, but, you know, this is the World Series and, you know, when people got wind that maybe I would be in the bullpen today, they said, you know, "Are you kidding? I mean, you pitched yesterday." But this is the World Series. You know, no different than the other 24, 25 guys in the clubhouse, this is what we wanted in spring training. It's got to be the mindset of everybody, and it was. I have often wondered, "What does it take to win a World Series?" Something that the New York Yankees have had for a lot of years in a row, and now I know what it takes to win a World Series. And to get to post-season, I mean, you've got to push the limits and you've got to have a bunch of battlers on your team like we did all year long. People come up from the Minor Leagues and contribute and like I said, the character on this team, with the veterans and the young people that came up from the Minor Leagues on this team meshed really well together. We played well all year long. It's an uphill battle and it usually is. A lot of adversity from what I understand, winning your first World Series, and could have given up after we came back, being down 3-2 to the Yankees, we came back here and had a big game yesterday and then today Curt battled. Coming back on three days' rest which really hasn't been done in probably about 30 years, to, do it two times, let alone once, he left it all out there and he should be commended for that because it is not easy to do. You know, this is a class act that we beat, the Yankees. What more can you say?

Q. Can you both talk about the improbable way it ended where one of the great closers in the history of the game makes a great pitch and gets beat on it, you guys both have probably been there before; can you talk a little about that?

RANDY JOHNSON: You can make -- like I said, he's arguably the best reliever -- well, he's, in post-season. He's got the best ERA in post-season. And for that, I would call him the best post-season reliever of all time. It was an uphill battle. But to make a quality pitch and have it hit, you know, you often come back shaking your head. Sometimes you wonder how a guy got a hit and you throw a ball right down the middle and he either misses it or pops it up. This game is a matter of inches and feet sometimes, throwing a pitch or a ball being fair or foul.

Q. Do you guys think destiny or fate had anything to do with this, with the two two-out bottom of the ninth home runs and Kim, somehow the Yankees got what they deserved tonight with Rivera?

CURT SCHILLING: I don't -- I don't look at it like that.

RANDY JOHNSON: I don't think it was the way you put it. It was good, hard baseball. The best team was going to win it. Came down to the last couple of outs in the ballgame. It seemed pretty surreal to me, sitting on the bench, and watching this all develop; knowing that we had a chance, but it was going to be a battle being up against Mariano Rivera, and that's just the kind of respect that you have for someone that's done what he's done in post-season. But then when Gonzo got the hit over shortstop, fell in and, you know --

CURT SCHILLING: There you go. (Smiles).

Q. How far do you think you could have gone tonight?

RANDY JOHNSON: Not far because I got pinch-hit for. (Laughter.) Like I said, it's just all adrenaline out there. It's not so much the innings that you throw but the pitches that you throw, and both myself and Curt are maximum effort from the very time we step on the mound. So, that's more what it takes out of your body than the innings thrown.

Q. Every player envisions going to the World Series and has a dream of it. How much more realistic did that dream become to you when the Diamondbacks traded for Curt?

RANDY JOHNSON: Well, I knew that -- I mean, pitching -- we saw all season long, and just about every year we see in the post-season, good pitching will shut down good hitting. The team that is get here are the teams that have depth in their starting rotation because you cannot rely on one person to do what needs to be done in post-season, let alone, to win four games in the World Series. Me and Curt fed off of one another all year long, and, you know, I think we both made ourselves better. I didn't personally talk about it much during the season because I didn't think that there was a time to do it. This is what we wanted to accomplish, and it could not have been done without Bobby Witt and Miguel Batista and Brian Anderson. We only won our division by two games and the effort that all of the other starters gave was outstanding. But it's just -- it still really has not quite sunk in yet. This is what we play for. Tomorrow, we'll wake up and I'll be ready to come to the ballpark again thinking that we still have some more games to play. But the season is over now. I'm just glad that everybody -- I'm probably talking more now than I've ever talked. (Laughter.) I'm really happy -- especially last night, to see Brohawn come in and Bobby Witt come in and Mike Morgan get an opportunity and Swindell get an opportunity to pitch in the World Series, just to get an opportunity to participate in the World Series. All right, your turn now.

CURT SCHILLING: No, please, this is great.

Q. Could each of you talk about -- it's been 45 minutes since the pandemonium broke out; what's going through your mind, what all this means to you?

CURT SCHILLING: First and foremost, I am thanking the Lord now. Too many times, I try and look at other reasons for what's happened in my life other than Him, and He is the first and more most reason. My wife who -- you think of the personal things. I had some moments before the game talking to my dad and just really putting my mind at ease with what's at stake; and that I was not going to leave anything in the dugout; and knowing that he (Randy) was going down to the bullpen on a days' rest, not even a days' rest, made what I was doing a lot easier mentally today. Realizing that this was it, it was for all of the marbles; and it was Roger and me out there and it was be kind of like a gunfight. Then the game happens. And you get there and you get to the ninth. This is one of those things that it's going to take a whole lot of time to absorb. But euphoric would be my description. And there's a whole laundry list of people I would have to thank for all of this being possible.

RANDY JOHNSON: I think just being blessed, having the God-given ability to do what I've been able to do, and being gifted to do what I've been able to do for as long as I've been able to do it. And the last eight years playing this game without my dad -- there's a bunch of people in the clubhouse that have lost their fathers: Mike Morgan, Tony Womack, Curt, myself, the past eight years have probably been the best of my career and my dad was not here to see that. I think this would far outweigh any personal accomplishment. Though he was proud of those, this is something he would be bragging to all of his friends about -- that my son won and was the World Series Champ. And being able to share that with my mom and brothers and sisters that were all here tonight, much like what Curt said, all family things and just giving thanks, I think.

Q. Obviously, winning the championship is a tremendous feeling, but to be able to do it like a heavyweight championship, take it way from the champion what does that mean?

CURT SCHILLING: It's like I said earlier: We went through sports greatest dynasty to win our first World Series. Hats off to Mr. Colangelo and Joe Garagiola and the Diamondbacks organization for putting the winning team on the field and the city. I meant what I said first off: Tip your hat to the City of New York and the New York Yankees, they have represented baseball to the umpth degree; and to win it makes it incredibly special. I believe this is not our last and we have the makeup and the chemistry and the talent and personnel to do it again; and maybe it will go through New York again, who knows.

Q. Was your arm sore when you were warming up? How did it feel compared to other times?

RANDY JOHNSON: I was not even thinking about it. Got down to the bullpen and Glenn Sherlock, our bullpen coach, said that I will probably be facing O'Neill, so that was the case. Came out there to face O'Neill and they pinch-hit for Knoblauch, I face him, he flies out, and then, you know I'm supposed to be facing Bernie Williams and Tino, and that would be it. I guess he probably felt that I might as well just finish the inning up and got Posada out on a strike with a slider and from that point on, I just stood up on top of the bench hoping that we could get something strung together and we did.

End of FastScripts....

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