October 11, 2001
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON: Game Two
Q. How big was that early lead against the Indians?
EDGAR MARTINEZ: Yes, it's a big thing to get a good lead early in the game. It's important for Jamie to get a good lead so he can work, and be able to relax a little bit. So for us it was big to get four runs in the first inning. And we were 0-2, and -- it was a big thing that we got four runs.
MIKE CAMERON: I think the same way as Edgar feels. It was big for us to get on the board early. The fact that we got shutout the previous game and Finley can get in the groove after the first three innings, he can get into a pretty good groove. And we were able to disrupt that by, myself, thinking if I could get -- wasn't really looking for a fastball in, it just happened to run back over the middle of the plate. And I was able to put us on the board early and the rest is history.
Q. Mike, have there been any -- you said it was so important to get out in front early, was there any strategy to try to steal with Ichiro, hit and run, something to move the runners along at some point?
MIKE CAMERON: Not at all. Normally Ichiro has his own way of doing things. But I think the fact that he was on first base gave me an opportunity to swing early and not really have a whole lot of opportunities to chase a lot of stuff that you can't really see. I was looking at fastballs, I caught up to a couple of them, and was late. They came in early, I figured they were going to throw me another fastball, I wasn't looking for the splitfinger, because I knew Finley didn't want to take a chance on Ichiro getting to second base early in the game and us getting an opportunity to score runs. And he left the ball in the middle of the plate and I was able to get to it and it brought some excitement to our stadium.
Q. Lou made mention of how loud and involved the crowd was today compared to Tuesday. How much does that play into your game when you're on the field and Edgar, when you're in the dugout?
EDGAR MARTINEZ: You know, the fans, they've been great here. It's almost like an extra player situation that is in our favor. And they were behind us, even after the first game. And they show a lot of support. And it really helped our team. So I think for us it helps us to get that support.
Q. Edgar, do you feel like you're as dialed in in the postseason as you were in the regular season with hitting that home run today?
EDGAR MARTINEZ: Postseason is more excitement. I think it's extra adrenaline. And it's just great. To me, I just feel more aggressive at times. But it is a team effort, I'm sure every player here feels the same way. It's more adrenaline flowing, and you feel more aggressive.
Q. Mike, even by your standards you seemed pretty loose yesterday. Take me through your day today prior to coming to the park.
MIKE CAMERON: Well, not too many guys get this opportunity, and there again it's still a baseball game. We have certain strategies that you try to do to win ballgames. And there's not going to be any change if you go out there moping around. It's okay that you're happy. I got out of bed yesterday, so I was happy about that, and the fact that I get a chance to come and play baseball was even better. And today was really exciting because there was a lot of pressure on us to come out and get a victory, especially going to Cleveland where their fans are definitely going to be on their side. But we play well on the road and we'll suit up on Saturday and try to get a win against Sabathia.
Q. Mike, Finley described himself as being a little over-amped in the first inning, do you sense that at all while you're in the box?
MIKE CAMERON: Not really. He's a seasoned veteran, but I think it was his first postseason start. And he wasn't really -- it was unusual for Ichiro to walk. And that was the key for us. Getting Ichiro out there early, that gave me an opportunity to work the count or be aggressive and take some swings at him. I chose to take some swings at it and it worked out well for me, because it kind of let the reins go a little bit. It's very tough conditions, and I just wanted to swing to put myself out there and get a feel for the game right away.
Q. Edgar, after 22 postseason shutout innings, were you talking earlier about setting the tone for the game?
EDGAR MARTINEZ: No, it never was any talk about any shutout or 22 innings shutout, it was -- we take everything -- trying to take it like it was in the regular season, trying to play the same way we did in the regular season. And just try to make it simple. And we're not looking at any stats, we're just trying to concentrate on what we have to do on the field and just trying to make it simple. We don't want to think about what happened in the past. We want to learn from the mistakes we made in the past, but we don't want to just concentrate on stuff like that, like what we did, or 22 shutout innings.
Q. Mike, after having yesterday off, did it feel like you were kind of eager to go out there and get this going early, just to prove that Tuesday was kind of an aberration?
MIKE CAMERON: I think, you know, after the game was over on Tuesday, or Monday, whenever it was, everyone I think really wanted to get back out and play. But it turned out that a day off worked out perfect for us. Because it allowed us to come here and regroup and just have some fun together and get ourselves regrouped for today. We did a very good job of everyone concentrating on what they had to do. And I think today proved what we've been doing all year long, how resilient we've been, and jumping out of the gates early against a very good team. They had all the emotions going their direction. And for us to play at home today was very big for us. And for us to get out of the gates very early was very, very key.
Q. Given the 1 o'clock start this time of year, how difficult were the shadows?
MIKE CAMERON: It's tough. It is very tough. And it's an uncomfortable feeling to be in the box knowing that you've got to really concentrate on seeing the ball the way you really have to. I was fortunate enough, I was able to see early on. But as the game goes on it gets tougher and tougher. You can ask anyone who played the game today. It's very tough. And, hopefully, the sun starts to go down a little bit earlier, if we continue to play later in the season.
EDGAR MARTINEZ: I feel the same way. They have some pitchers that they can throw the ball hard. When the guys come in from the bullpen it seems like everybody is throwing 95, 96, and it makes it a little tougher, you know. So it was nice to get on the board early, because we knew it was going to be tough for the offense after that.
Q. You guys both mentioned that there was pressure today and it was good to jump out early. But when you did, you could almost feel the 50,000 people go, "Okay, here we go." You guys are human, do you feel that also?
MIKE CAMERON: Definitely. I definitely think so. Because as baseball players you want to achieve something that's good, and you want to play well. And it was a letdown, I think, for everyone surrounding us, that we got shutout on Game 1. But the guy did a heck of a job throwing the baseball. And if he can do that the rest of his career, he'll be in the Hall of Fame. And today Jamie did a great job doing what he had to do, changing speeds, and keeping the guys off balance, and letting us score some runs. We're feeling pretty good going into Cleveland, as well as Cleveland should be. It's back to zero now. So we have a fair chance, just like everyone else.
Q. At what point do you hear the crowd?
MIKE CAMERON: You hear the crowd as soon as they announce us going out on the field. It's an emotional thing. You get the adrenaline flowing. It's like a college football game every day. It's the biggest -- I say it's the biggest block party every day that we play here. We have many supporters of the Seattle Mariners, and I'm proud to be a part of that.
Q. Finley has been a particularly tough pitcher on both of you guys. How does that play on your mind when you go up there to face him?
EDGAR MARTINEZ: Usually the way I approach -- I pretty much know who has been tough on me. And I don't look at stats or anything like that. I don't want to look at them. But all you can do is just be aggressive at the plate when you're facing a pitcher that has been tough on you. And that's what I tried to do and take my chances. And in a series like this, anything can happen. It can go your way or the pitcher's way. So trying not to think too much about it, and be aggressive.
MIKE CAMERON: For me, he's always been tough on me, for some particular reason. But Lou put me in the line-up today, and as soon as he put me in the line-up I had a chance, just as well as Finley had a chance to get me out, I had a chance to get a hit. I came up pretty big in the first inning, that lifted the spirits in the dugout and allowed us to let our hair down, which I don't have any (laughter), but it just allowed everyone to get a sense that we're still where we are right now. So it was very big.
End of FastScripts....