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October 2, 2006

Ken Macha


Q. First question for Ken, what are you looking at as far as Game 3 and Game 4 starters?
KEN MACHA: It will be an issue tomorrow. And I say maybe.

Q. What are your options and what other factors are you looking at?
KEN MACHA: Well, we have -- our team has five starters, Zito and Loaiza and Blanton and Danny Haren and Rich Harden.
So we are going to take four of those guys. Rich Harden was out yesterday, walked six people and got 90-some pitches, almost 100 pitches in four innings, so I would like to see how he feels today.
Probably going to have him go to the side tomorrow, see how he is doing, and evaluate him from there.
So those are the options and that's what we are looking at right now.

Q. Have you talked to Rich to see how he is feeling physically today or talked to the trainers about him?
KEN MACHA: Saw him last night going into the dugout, asked him how he was doing, and he said "Oh, I am a little stiff, but that's usual." I haven't seen him today.

Q. Are you going to announce your 25-man roster today or tomorrow?
KEN MACHA: I think they have to be in by 10 o'clock tomorrow, so I will have to see if Billy and David come in today. We have looked that over pretty much in our meeting the other day, so we probably could do that today.

Q. What impresses you most about Santana's game?
KEN MACHA: Santana's game? He pretty much can be a game-ending pitcher. Got the ability to throw a fastball inside to right-handers, and his change-ups are probably the best in the league, so that combination is probably deadly to right-handed hitters. Right-handed hitters only hit about 200 off him. He will strike you out with both those pitches.
The man is good, holds runners well. He doesn't give you many options on how you can beat him. Overall, he is probably going to win the Cy Young this year. He is the best pitcher in the league.

Q. Ken, what are the difficulties in a short series as far as trying to -- obviously, you are the manager, so you have a lot of things that are out of your control in a short span of time.
KEN MACHA: Well, I mean, you can have one or two plays back because you lose one game. Last time when we played Boston and I was the manager we had a guy not touching home plate and not running all the way, and the rest of the series (inaudible).
So the players got to be ready to play perfect ball for every one of those games because losing one game has a huge impact on the way the series comes out.

Q. Ken, do you plan on addressing your team at all before tomorrow's game and reminding them about the things you had said?
KEN MACHA: Probably not. I think, for the most part, we have got the rookies out there, and over the course of the season -- I am just taking a look at yesterday's game. First hitter of the game, the shortstop (inaudible), stayed back on it and didn't do the proper technique, saved at first.
Next hit a ground ball in the infield and next thing you know they had an inning going.
As soon as the play was going and we got in the dugout, Wash addressed him and told him that his technique was improper and try to correct it next time it happened.
So I think those particular things are addressed every day with my club, anyhow. And I think these guys realize that these little things play a big part in winning games.
We played 15 one-run games this year, see how important one run here and there, or one out here and there.

Q. Can you speak about -- it looks like both teams are fairly similar in the way you approach the game and what you try to do to win games. Do you see that? Do you see a lot of yourself in the Twins and a lot of the Twins maybe in you?
KEN MACHA: Well, there is a premium on the defensive end of it. Both our teams play well defensively and the pitching end of it. They have a way of making their runs count a little different than we do.
They put their runners in play more, they hit and run a little more, they have got a lot of hops and field hitters. Speed is a little more of a premium than it is with our club.
Perhaps if we would have had a healthy Eric Chavez we probably would have hit a few more homeruns than we did this year.
But Frank has certainly been a tremendous addition and he has given us more of the power of our club, so we may score runs a little differently, but I think both these things, if you sat down and asked Gardy or myself, pitching and the defense, probably part of the success. And offense has been kind of a maybe second thought, but each club has a way of scoring runs, and it's a little different.

Q. What do you remember both from the last division series here?
KEN MACHA: We had Scott Hatterburg first, Mark Ellis second, and Art was the manager, and hit a pop up to Hatterburg and he whiffed it, so I told Ellis, who was tremendous at pop-ups, I said I like -- do me a favor, call Hatty off those pop-ups.
So the next thing he went up there and there was another pop-up, so he was calling Hatty off the pop-up and saw Lot [ph] out there and ran into each other, and that ball dropped in, too. So that's what I remember most.

Q. Did not knowing who you were going to play until the very last minute present any kind of added issues for you guys?
KEN MACHA: Maybe in preparation a little bit, but my setup was really preparing for Detroit because we hadn't seen them in a while. Pretty much the guys that are going to be (inaudible) are ones that we have seen this year, and we have just recently played the Twins, so as far as preparation is concerned, we sat down today and pretty much ran over the year and where they were playing people, having placed them about three weeks ago, it's pretty much right on top of what we want to do, so I don't think that's played a factor in anything.

End of FastScripts...

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