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October 2, 2006

Chris Carpenter


Q. Chris, can you describe the difference between the situation you're in this year compared to last, you know, being at home, same opponent, same starting pitcher opposite you? I know you don't focus on those things, but being at home with 100 wins behind you compared to this year where essentially the gamble was yesterday made to get you this start.
CHRIS CARPENTER: To talk about the gamble that they took, obviously it worked out the way they wanted it to work out. And it's not my call on who makes that decision. I came up here to pitch yesterday and they decided I wasn't going to.
So obviously that all worked out well to get me this opportunity and I'm excited about the opportunity. No matter if we're on home or on the road, you get to this point in the season you're one of eight teams that has a chance to win and if somebody gets hot, couple starting pitcher throw the ball well and couple of guys on the club get hot, you never know what's going to happen and the season is over with.
This is all brand new, new pressures, new excitement, so I'm excited to be in this situation. I'm looking forward to tomorrow. And take it one pitch at a time like I always do.

Q. Chris, looking at the Padres bat terse tomorrow, what's your approach and who sticks out in your mind as, you know, how you're going to pitch them or a potential threat?
CHRIS CARPENTER: Well, obviously they're here for a reason also. And they've got great pitching and great offense. So I don't think that anyone stands out in particular.
I think that they got a quality lineup up and down. And you gotta go out and do the best you can to execute your game plan.
And execute the pitch, one pitch at a time, one out at a time one inning at a time and try to do the best I can doing it. The guys are good. That's the reason they're here.
I have to go out and execute a lot of good pitches tomorrow.

Q. Chris, with all the team struggles this season with the pitching, with injuries and you being the guy that they've leaned on for most of the year, you feel, I know baseball is all pressure, especially in the post-season, but do you feel any more necessarily going into tomorrow's game?
CHRIS CARPENTER: No. And the reason I don't is because it's a team every time, team game. You know, I could easily go out and do my job and still lose.
I could -- offense and defense could easily go out and do their job and me not do mine and lose.
So like I said, it's one game at a time. I'm going out to do the best I can, give my team the chance to win tomorrow. And hopefully that will be good enough. And we can get one under our belt tomorrow and come back on Thursday and get another shot at it.
I don't believe that we're in the situation because they leaned on me all year. We had a bunch of guys that won a lot of games, a lot of guys that contributed on this club all year long.
Starting staff, guys that are here, guys that aren't here, that have done a great job all year. That's the reason we're here. And I believe in every single one of the guys they'll throw out there that they'll give us a chance to win.

Q. Chris, going back to yesterday, your team falls down early in the Houston game is still up in the air, and you're not on the mound. I'm just wondering, what that felt like and then in the fifth inning or whatever it was when that, when the Braves/Astro game was settled and you guys are in.
If that was a relief or you felt that the gamble or whatever called it paid off.
CHRIS CARPENTER: Definitely, like I said no matter how you get in, you know we had an opportunity to get to this point. I felt great when the final score came up Atlanta beat Houston knowing the situation we were in that game, for a few innings I started going over the giant's lineup trying to figure out what I was going to have to do tomorrow just in case but then the final score came up and we made it.
It made me feel good. Made me get excited about this opportunity I have now.

Q. Does that mean you went over three lineups in three days?
CHRIS CARPENTER: I was. I was preparing myself to face the Brewers on Sunday. That ended up not happening. And then during the game I thought myself thinking about the Giants, no question about it.
And then we got in, so now I'm preparing myself for San Diego and I started thinking about that last night.

Q. Chris, through the years we've heard you say about the one pitch, one game, and there's not one different than the other, no more pressure. I'm wondering what you took from your first post-season. I think lost in the seasons that you've had here is that last year was your first taste of this. And coming into this event, this atmosphere, did you learn something about what it takes to succeed in the small series last year or is there some lesson to be learned from your first time through.
CHRIS CARPENTER: Well, the first thing, I mean there's no question that when you talk about, you're talking about me personally, about the pressure and the anxiety leading up to a game. There's no question that tomorrow's game is a big game.
It's bigger than April 14th. I mean it's a big game. But the way that I deal with it is to try to treat it like an April 14th game, because the only reason why it's such a bigger game is because of all this that's going on right now.
The fact that the one loss might turn into the end of the season, you'll hang out with the rest of your family for the rest of the season. Those are the things that make it a bigger game if you can control those things that are going on on the outside, on the inside it's the same game I gotta go out and pitch. I gotta go out and face the San Diego Padres and execute pitches and execute my game plan.
The only way you can do that successfully is to be relaxed and under control. Your mind and your body and go out and do it. If I'm concerned with the pressures and the things going on around me on the outside, through media, through TV, through the fans, through where we're at, whatever it is, you're going to have a lesser chance to succeed.
So you have to control it. You have to control it inside, and I was able to do that last year, and I feel like I'm going to be able to do it this year. That's part of the reason why I've been successful the last three years.
MODERATOR: Okay. Thanks, Chris.

End of FastScripts...

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