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October 8, 2001

Greg Maddux


THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What do you think about the Astros' line-up you'll be facing tomorrow?

GREG MADDUX: Well, they have a very good line-up. You know, they've scored a lot of runs all year. They have a lot of power. They run a little bit. You know, they're just, you know... Eight or nine guys that know how to swing the bats pretty well.

Q. Bobby Cox said he thought you'd probably pitch this Game two or three times in your mind as you start to prepare for it. Can you give us any insight into how you go about mentally preparing?

GREG MADDUX: Well, you know, I just try to reflect back on what's worked in the past and what hasn't. The stuff that didn't work, try not to do that again. The stuff that worked, try to repeat that a little more often. I mean, things change when you get on the mound. That's something I understand, and I throw whatever I feel like throwing at that time to that hitter. I don't really know what it's going to be until you get out there.

Q. Can you talk about what this year's been like for you, just for you and the way you pitched?

GREG MADDUX: It's been okay. I mean, I'm not thrilled with it, but I'm not disappointed with it at the same time. Obviously, I would have liked to have finished up a little bit better than I did, and I'm going to have that chance now. So I'm glad I'm still pitching, and I'm looking forward to the next couple weeks.

Q. How do you feel about the team overall, where you guys are at?

GREG MADDUX: We've played good the last week. It's something to be optimistic about. Pitching's been pretty good. The boys have been swinging the bats excellent. Guys seem to really be coming together right now. That's always a good thing when you're heading into the post-season.

Q. Can you talk about your recent starts, the struggles that you've had of late.

GREG MADDUX: Well, I don't feel like I've struggled, for one. I felt like I've made a couple of mistakes. I don't feel like -- I felt good, though. I felt pretty good out there on the mound the last couple times out. I felt good my last game. You know, I always seem to try to pitch off of my last game and make corrections from that. I never go back further than my last game, so I feel pretty good about what I'm trying to do with the ball right now.

Q. Lance Berkman said that if he had to choose, he's happier that you and Glavine are pitching here rather than a pitcher's park in Turner. Do you think that that might be better for Houston, that you guys are pitching in a park like this?

GREG MADDUX: Well, yeah, I mean obviously I think a hitter would be nuts to rather hit in Atlanta than this place (laughing). This is the -- the infield's faster, the fences are shorter. They've got 300 bats in this place this year as opposed to, what, 12 in our place. So I think our hitters would probably rather hit here than our park, too (smiling).

Q. The success that you and the staff has had in previous playoffs, Bagwell, Biggio, they're big hitters and have always been very frustrated going up against your staff. Can you talk about what has been key there. Do you feel you've gotten in their heads and get at their confidence?

GREG MADDUX: I really don't think it matters. I mean, I don't think it matters what happened, what, two, three years ago? Just like I don't think last week matters, to be honest with you. I mean, I think what matters is how you play now. Yesterday or years ago I don't think really matters a whole lot regardless. Those were good, tight series. I'm glad we won those series, but I think that's as far as it goes.

Q. There's been a lot of talk among the media at least of the Braves having an off year. In that light, do you think it has you guys more focused heading into this post-season?

GREG MADDUX: I don't think so. I think, first off, I hope we have another five or six off years like this one, to be honest with you (smiling). You know, I think as a player and as a team, when you play the game of baseball you have to eliminate all the stuff that goes on outside of the game. The media is a part of that. I think you have to concentrate on playing baseball and not what's being said about yourself or your team. So I don't think it matters; I really don't. One way or the other, I don't think it mattered when everyone said we should win the whole thing and I don't think it matters a whole lot now when it's said that we probably shouldn't win a game. It matters how you play.

Q. Caminiti thought, having been in the other dugout, that there's a confidence gap for the Astros facing the Braves. Do you there's that kind of advantage for your team going up against them this year?

GREG MADDUX: I don't. I mean, again, I'm worried about what I have to do to help this team win. I mean, it's hard to know what the other team's thinking so you don't even really try. You just kind of worry about what it is you have to do to put your team in the best position to win. And, again, that's something that I think as a player is out of your control. You just want to stay focused on what it is you need to do to help your team win and not worry about all the other stuff outside of that.

End of FastScripts....

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