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October 16, 1999

Joe Torre


Q. Is Roger okay? Were you concerned at all? He appeared to be grimacing in the dugout, is something wrong with him?

JOE TORRE: I think the score was making him grimace. Before the game I was talking about what we would do to play for one run and all of a sudden we are down 4-0. No, everything is fine and you know, he will be here in a little bit, I guess.

Q. Was Pedro's strategy or his pitch selection any different tonight than the last time you faced him?

JOE TORRE: Well, he probably didn't have the same fastball that night. But his selection was probably the same. He can reach in there and take any one of three pitches and throw it for a strike, that is the thing that makes it tough to hit off him. He seems to sense a lot of times when to do certain things. He reads the hitters real well. But I think aside from the velocity he was basically the same guy. Every time I looked up at the scored board, it was 1 and 2. That is big.

Q. What do you think happened to Roger?

JOE TORRE: With Roger to me it was just the opposite. He got in some bad counts, tried to make a pitch to John Valentin down and got it up and he was able to hook the ball out of the ballpark. He just didn't have the command that you know, we would like to see him have or that he would like to have. That was basically it -- it is tough, especially in this ballpark, with our ballclub we just don't do well when it is a high-scoring game normally. When Pedro is on the mound, it makes it that much tougher.

Q. Why did you take him out after the one pitch instead of after the batter?

JOE TORRE: Because my reliever wasn't ready. I was just waiting for my reliever in the bullpen. He was up the inning before, then we sat him down and we just wanted to get him ready.

Q. When you went out to get Roger it looked like you were trying to offer him some encouragement. What point were you trying to get across to him?

JOE TORRE: It was that he didn't have his stuff today basically and you know, no sense in using him all the way up if we don't have to. That was basically it. I just -- he wasn't in command -- he didn't have good command of his stuff; in this ballpark that is not a good sign, and I just wanted to get him out of there before he started forcing things and used a lot of energy.

Q. Roger said he was at ease with pitching at Fenway. Do you think the atmosphere got to him, the crowd got to him?

JOE TORRE: Well, I don't -- that is tough to say. He had a game like this in Texas. Of course Fenway is a little bit different than Texas only because he pitched here. But I really don't think it was the crowd as much as his not having the stuff that he hoped he would have. But for sure the crowd -- I am sure you know, you use that to drive you, but there really wasn't, you know, he didn't have the stuff to be driven, I guess.

Q. When he pitched in Baltimore, had all those walks and hit batters. He hadn't pitched for a while and he was off mechanically. Would you say that was kind of the same problem tonight or is it something different?

JOE TORRE: No. Because he had pitched in Texas.

Q. No, I know that. But the mechanical, was it the same mechanical problems do you think that he had in Baltimore?

JOE TORRE: New York I just think it was stuff. I just didn't think the stuff was there. I think that is probably as simplistic as it can be. I think that is really the only answer for it. I think mechanically I thought his command as far as throwing strikes was there, that day in Baltimore he was just all over the place and jumping all over the place. Today I thought he was fairly calm considering the situation, but he just was trying to make a pitch and it just didn't get there.

Q. Given that it was Pedro you are facing were you concerned about the 1 or the 13?

JOE TORRE: You mean run-wise?

Q. Yeah.

JOE TORRE: It was the one. 13 is -- I was just -- before I came up here last thing I did was go in and thank Hideki Irabu for sucking up some innings and things for us because that was necessary, especially when you have Games 3, 4 and 5 where you don't have an off day and we are going to probably need our bullpen. Getting behind by four runs there in the second inning it was -- we were going to have to try to stay right there and we couldn't do it, but I wasn't concerned about the final score.

Q. How much of a momentum changer is this, if any?

JOE TORRE: Well, there is no question. I believe that in a short series a game turns it momentum-wise, but what we need to do tomorrow is come out here and pitch the way we are capable of pitching and that normally quiets things down. That is what we rely on. But for sure, the Red Sox feel good about themselves tonight and we are just the opposite. But that is what makes these short series great. It just tests your insides, basically.

Q. Would you talk about whether the hitters are frustrated whether there is any talk in the dugout?

JOE TORRE: There is always talk. They are always talking to each other because he is an artist out there. He has got a baseball instead of a paint brush. There is no question that he carves up that plate pretty good and tries to keep you from sitting back and waiting for any particular pitch. So you try to solve the puzzle and Jeter -- as you said when Jeter got the base hit I felt at that point in time before he settles in if we can put something up, but he -- he has got that knack -- and Bob Gibson, back in 1968, had a similar year where every single time he went out there, you saw quality stuff and tonight was just another example for Pedro.

Q. Should it go the distance do you keep Game 5, 6, 7 same rotation as 1, 2 and 3?

JOE TORRE: When we set the pitching up we made decisions, 1, 5, 2, 6, 3, 7. We have no reason to change that.

End of FastScripts…

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