October 8, 2000
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA: Game Five
Q. The obligatory travel question: How was the journey? When did you get in? Sleep?
JOE TORRE: I slept intermittently last night. At 60 years old, I do that anyway (laughter). I guess we landed at 3:30 this morning, got downtown quickly. It's one of the few times I got in bed and didn't turn on the television. I just wanted to go to sleep. But, you know, both teams were in the same situation. We obviously didn't want to make that trip. As long as we're out here, hopefully we can make the most of it.
Q. Obviously, nobody is happy with the travel schedule. What does this do to the quality of the game?
JOE TORRE: I don't think guys are going to realize they're tired until it's over with. When you have your mind made up on what your goals are, you start in February, you know, you get to a one-game series, all the griping I've done about a five-game series, it doesn't matter now. It's just a one-game series. You know, I don't know what it does to the quality of the game. I sense that there's going to be more emotion going on than anything else out there. I don't think it really will affect what the product is.
Q. Did you alter your pregame preparations at all? Any lineup changes?
JOE TORRE: Yes, difficult. Knoblauch is leading off. He's going to be the designated hitter. That's a change from yesterday and from the last few days. And I go back and forth all the time. This is the lineup that we played most of the year with. We haven't been very good offensively. Hopefully between Knobby and Jeter, we can get some people on base and maybe, you know, have the middle of the order be a little more productive. As far as anything changing, we're going to hit as usual. We got our normal two or three buses at different intervals coming from the hotel. This is -- you're on cruise control at this point in time.
Q. I know there were some questions about whether Chuck was into the series. Are you convinced? Did you talk to him that he's ready to go?
JOE TORRE: Yeah. We've spoken several times. I know Chuck wasn't happy when I took him out of the lineup for Game 2, even though he understood my explanation, doesn't mean you have to like it. Then he wasn't taking groundballs at second base. You know, it wasn't the right thing to do. We talked about that. But, again, I think he just felt that, you know, I'm not going to be using him defensively. He wasn't taking groundballs. Not that it wasn't the right thing to do, but that's what he did. As I say, we've talked about that. He has been taking his batting practice on an everyday basis. If he's not ready to play, then I made a bad decision. But I sense that he'll be ready.
Q. The fact that the A's faced Pettitte such a short time ago. Do you think it might give them a slight advantage and you'll have to approach them differently?
JOE TORRE: No. We used to face Koufax a lot. It didn't do us a damn bit of good (laughter). Hopefully not. You know, I think if Andy is able to throw strikes and keep the ball down, he's basically a low-ball pitcher. Hopefully the fact that he's had success here just a few days ago, when he gets out on that mound, that feeling will come back for him.
MODERATOR: Nothing else for Joe?
JOE TORRE: They're tired; I'm not (laughter).
End of FastScripts....