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October 8, 2009

Aaron Cook

Yorvit Torrealba


Colorado 5
Philadelphia 4

Q. Question for Yorvit. Just take us through the at-bat on the home run. What was going through your mind? What pitch did you hit on that?
YORVIT TORREALBA: Well, I basically -- yesterday, I tried to slow myself down a little bit instead of being kind of jumpy. The first pitch, he threw me a breaking ball, so I said to myself basically he's going to try to get me out without speed. In 1-1 he threw a curve ball in that was a little hang, and I was able to stay at-bat long enough to hit it out of the ballpark.

Q. Yorvit, could you talk about Aaron's performance and how well he pitched?
YORVIT TORREALBA: He didn't pitch too good today. No, he definitely was on. His sinker, like we know whenever his sinker is downhill, it's going to be a lot of ground balls out, and he definitely was on it. He was working definitely on both sides of the plate, and like I say, he keep the ball down, and we hit a lot of ground balls out.

Q. For both, your thoughts on winning Game 2, escaping here with one victory and now having home-field advantage and a chance to end this thing in Denver?
AARON COOK: Definitely it's a big game. Any time you can go back to your home field, series tied or possibly in the lead, it's always huge.
The crowd was really into it today and that's something we're going to have on our side going back on Saturday. Playing Coors Field is the momentum and the crowd in Denver.
Definitely a big game for us. I try not to put too much pressure on myself. Like Yorvit said, I've got a simple game plan, used my sinker both sides of the plate, and Phillies are a great team. They made me get pitches up, they were working me early, and I knew I had to come in there sooner or later.
In the sixth inning I just made a couple bad pitches. It's definitely great for us to go back with the series tied.

Q. Yorvit?
YORVIT TORREALBA: Cooky basically said it. It's huge because obviously we've been playing really well at home, especially in the last month and a half. Going back to our Denver, that was our goal, if we can just win at least one game here, and then obviously we did. So it's definitely important.
We're going back home and play, like he's saying, our crowd and our fans, and it's going to be huge.

Q. Aaron, can you talk about the fact that the Phillies never know who's coming out of that pen these days, Happ comes in; he's a starter. Blanton comes in; he's a starter. How does that affect your club, your offense, and going into Game 3, no starter has been named? Does it matter to you guys?
AARON COOK: Not really. We definitely were surprised because at first they said Happ is going to start Game 3 and then the next thing we know, we saw him in the sixth or seventh inning or whatever it was. It doesn't really matter. We still have to have quality bats, make a good approach at any guy that's out there. It's too bad. Hopefully he's doing well. Too bad he got injured on his leg. But it was definitely a surprise for us in the dugout.

Q. Two questions: One for Cooky, and then one for both you guys. Your emotions coming into today's playoff game as opposed to '07 when you pitched Game 4 of the World Series.
And then a question for both you guys, could you comment on the job that the two youngsters, Cargo and Dex did today in some very key spot?
AARON COOK: Well, the emotion is pretty much the same, big playoff atmosphere coming in after a layoff. This time I had a couple starts under my belt before I got to pitch in a playoff. You know, just the main thing when you get into the postseason is I think being able to control your nerves and still go out there and execute, and there were a couple times I caught myself, I had to step off the back of the mound, take a couple deep breaths because this crowd gets into it here and it makes it tough to go out and execute. That's pretty much it. It was about the same.
And then for Cargo and Dexter leading off, some big key spots, they've been doing it all year and they don't look like they're rookies at all. A lot of good things to look forward to with them two.
YORVIT TORREALBA: Definitely. I agree with Cooky. To me, those two guys are basically like Jimmy Rollins and Victorino on the other side of the field. Whenever they're on base, obviously pitchers don't want to rush because they don't want to let them basically steal a base or something. Like I said, it's like Victorino and Rollins. That's basically what they try to do. They've been really -- that's the key for them basically, that's part of their game, and fortunately we have those two guys.

Q. How well was your sinker going today, and when you're really fresh, do you ever worry that you're too strong and it won't sink as much if you're on a normal rotation?
AARON COOK: Well, Yorvit would probably be able to answer more how my sinker is moving. When I'm throwing my better ones, I don't see it move quite as much because I'm staying through it, finishing and getting better follow-through, so I don't see it quite as good.
I think the best key to going off of is what the hitters are going to the pitches, and I got quite a ground ball outs today later in the game. I got some line drives to center field and right field that were up in the zone that were base hits.
About being fresh, it comes down to being able to control your emotions and control yourself and stay within yourself. And after being around the league for six, seven years now, it's a little bit easier, and I think coming back from the '07 World Series, like I said, you can never really simulate being in the postseason unless you play there. I don't remember. Yorvit might be able to comment on it more.
YORVIT TORREALBA: Well, basically I've been trying to hang. And also Jimenez, slow it down. Keep the front shoulder closed, and when they're kind of wide open, his sinker is not that good. He had to be like downhill, keep the sinker down by reaching to me, kind of like a plate catch. Whenever he started overthrowing a little bit, that'll be when his sinker is kind of flat.

Q. I wanted to ask both guys with playing in the twilight, especially when it came across the -- shadows came across the plate in the third or fourth inning.
YORVIT TORREALBA: I don't think it helps anybody. It was definitely hard. You can barely see the ball as a catcher or as a hitter. I think I got lucky actually to be honest with you. I think I closed my eyes, and I swung the hit and hit a home run. It's hard to see, but it's hard for both teams. I don't think any team has the advantage of that.
AARON COOK: Yeah, like Yorvit said, playing in twilight makes it tough sometimes to pick up the catcher or even after you throw the ball see the ball come off the bat. Playing here with twilight coming through the stands, it kind of gets in the right-handed pitcher's eyes, maybe not quite as much in the left-handed pitcher's.
But we're all playing on the same field. That's the beautiful thing about the sport, you always play on a level playing field.

Q. A lot of people have played at different levels. Is the ball just a black spot in that light and hard to pick up the spin on it?
AARON COOK: I don't know from a hitting standpoint. I only got two at-bats today. But when you're pitching, you throw it and then you really don't see it come off the bat all that well. I think some of the fielders sometimes don't get good reads on the ball.
Even Werth yesterday, he didn't get a good read on the ball that was hit in the gap. It's definitely unique playing in twilight. We don't get to do it much because we usually play games at 1:00, or we're starting at 7:00 when it's already dark, so it's something you've got to get used to.

Q. Did you know immediately it was gone when you hit it?
YORVIT TORREALBA: Yes, like I said, I was slow enough, and I stayed back long enough to get out of the ballpark because I knew right away when I hit it, it was gone.

Q. Because of the fact that it was such an important home run, your thoughts, because it had been a while since you hit one?
YORVIT TORREALBA: I know. It was a while since I hit one before today. It's a great feeling. Just help the team win. It doesn't matter if you're hitting home runs or not, I just want to help my team win, either with my defense or with -- it counts the same.

Q. Yorvit, a couple of your teammates said that they called your home run in the dugout. Did you know about that?
YORVIT TORREALBA: No, I don't know.

Q. What kind of reception did you get when you got back?
YORVIT TORREALBA: Well, everybody was surprised just like he said. I forgot when was the last time I hit a home run. They don't even believe it. I don't even believe it myself, I'm telling you. I'm being honest, I forgot when was the last time I hit one.

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