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October 6, 2010

Joe Girardi


THE MODERATOR: Who has the first question for Joe?

Q. Your thinking behind your starting lineup?
JOE GIRARDI: Gardy had some success off the Liriano and Austin has been banged up at the end of the year with the bad finger and the bad elbow, and we went with Gardy. You have a big outfield here and that's why we went with Gardy.

Q. Did Granderson's numbers against Liriano stand out at all? Give you any pause?
JOE GIRARDI: No, because we felt over the last two months Grandy's numbers off of left-hander we threw them out because of the way he has been swinging off of left-handers.

Q. How is Andy's health? And where are you in terms of where he is? How do you feel about that?
JOE GIRARDI: His health is good. And I feel good about Andy. You know, the last two starts didn't go exactly the way we wanted. I thought he was much better in Boston the second time than when he faced them at our ballpark, and I thought he had a very good cutter. He talked about his bullpen was excellent yesterday, and he felt much better. And I feel good about Andy. Andy has been here so many times that he makes you feel pretty good.

Q. With those last few starts from Andy, how much was he trying to work on things, and how much was he just pitching like normal?
JOE GIRARDI: I wouldn't say he was 100% pitching like normal, because I don't think he necessarily had a feel for all of his pitches. Usually you have the six starts or five or six starts since Spring Training to get ready for the season and you build on it and build on it and build on it he was kind of on a fast track. He made two rehab starts basically and went at it.
So I think at times he didn't feel like he had all of his weapons, but I think he does now.

Q. In terms of CC and how he goes about his business, how would you describe how he does his thing?
JOE GIRARDI: CC does it in a relaxed manner, I think. When you watch CC he is the same the day that he pitches as every other day during the course of a week; his personality never changes. Where some guys become a little more quiet and stick to themselves a little bit more on days they pitch. CC's not like that. He's the same guy.

Q. Could you give a look at some of the things that A.J. said yesterday in regards to the talk that obviously when you told him he wasn't going to be on the roster. I mean, in the rotation. He said something along the lines, that Joe is the best manager that I ever played for and I know that he has my best interests at heart here. Did you see that or --
JOE GIRARDI: No I did not.

Q. How does it make you feel you can tell a guy he is not starting in a playoff and he says something like that?
JOE GIRARDI: Well it makes me feel good, because I think it confirms that A.J. knows I really care about him. And as I said yesterday, when you are with the guys all year and you have to tell them they are not doing their normal role, they are not on the roster, guys dream about these things. As a kid in the backyard I used to dream it was the seventh game of the World Series in the playoffs and that's what we dream about. Of course there's going to be disappointment and I wouldn't expect it any other way. But I think there is a mutual respect. And I have tough decisions that I have to make, but A.J. knows that I care about him. I care about every guy in there. And I don't like being the guy that has to send people down in Spring Training, or has to tell a guy he's not on the roster or he's not in his normal role. That's not always easy to do, but that's part of the job description. But the big thing to me, there's a mutual respect.

Q. Did you have any special trepidation about telling him? Because he was saying over and over again, I expect to be in the rotation.
JOE GIRARDI: There are guys, and I won't give names, but there are guys that sometimes it is harder to tell than others. And probably because there's more of an expectation there that makes it more difficult. And there might be more of a relationship there, you might have been together longer than necessarily other guys. But there are guys that it's tougher.

Q. Joe, Mariano had a couple of hiccups drown the stretch and a couple of blown saves in there. Did you have any restrictions with him in terms of using him for more than an inning? And also what did you see from him down the stretch, are you confident will he be Mariano again?
JOE GIRARDI: I am confident he will be Mariano. Is there trepidation about using him more than three outs? A little bit. But there may be a situation where we say this is what we are going to do. There is trepidation all year long about using him more than three outs. We try not to do it. This is the time of year that -- last year we did it some. We will see how he is feeling and how he's throwing the ball.

Q. Would you use him two full innings?
JOE GIRARDI: Right now maybe.

Q. Did the off-days that are built in make it easier in terms of how you go ahead and use him and for how much?
JOE GIRARDI: Yes, it actually makes it easier how you use your whole bullpen because you don't have to worry about throwing guys three days in a row.
THE MODERATOR: Okay, thank you.

End of FastScripts

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