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October 7, 2010

Joe Girardi


Q. Joe, you used a lot of guys in the bullpen last night and we know what your philosophy is during the regular season, when you have potential to use guys four out of five days, which you shied away from during the regular season. Has any of that changed for you? Are you a little more liberal this time of year?
JOE GIRARDI: Probably a little bit. And the thing is I will check with them every day to see how they feel. Because the one thing I talked about, I've always talked about is they are fatigued, I would rather have a strong, healthy guy in there than a fatigued guy. But I would think, you know, there's a possibility we can use some guys four out of five nights if we had to.

Q. Joe, I was writing a story on Jim Thome and I was looking at the greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame and I notice that you're in there, but Jim Thome isn't.
JOE GIRARDI: They have made a mistake (laughing). Jim was, you know, a little bit younger than I was, and never had a chance to play against him growing up. But I did in the Big Leagues. And somehow we grew up in the same area and I got like 1/20th of his power. I am not sure what happened.

Q. Joe, I know he didn't have, you know, some kind of incredible statistical night but it seemed Jeter hit the ball hard and had pretty good at-bats. What did you think of the way he swung last night?
JOE GIRARDI: We felt he did that for the month of September, the little thing he did in Texas as well. When he was struggling he is hitting a lot of ground balls and we've seen him hit a lot of line drives and elevate balls to right and center field and that's when Derek is going well. And we're pleased with his at-bats.

Q. How comfortable is it to have Andy Pettitte pitching today? I am wondering how have you seen that evolve over time when you were with him in '96, '97?
JOE GIRARDI: Andy has been here so many times, the postseason wins that he has. You're pretty comforted in you know he knows how to prepare for tonight and it is something that he is not doing for the first time. He knows what this time of year means to everyone but he is going to be Andy Pettitte, and that's comfortable.

Q. Do you remember back in his early years?
JOE GIRARDI: 1996, sure. And he was pretty much the same guy. He didn't have as much gray hair back then, but he was pretty much the same guy.

Q. Joe, you made a little tweak to the lineup. Just talk about the thought process.
JOE GIRARDI: We started doing that the last couple of weeks, putting Granderson second against some right-handers. It gives us more speed. Breaks up our lefties a little bit, and it just changes our lineup, and it's something that we saw. And that's the great thing about having Nick Swisher, he is interchangeable and we can move him around in the lineup and he does a good job wherever we put him.

Q. Joe, using Robertson and Wood last night but not Joba, is that indicative of a pecking order or a situational thing?
JOE GIRARDI: It was a situational thing we looked at, and Robby had done a pretty good job against those guys in the past.

Q. Joe, why is Kevin Long so good at his job?
JOE GIRARDI: Well, there's a lot of reasons and I think he knows swings. I think he knows the proper mechanics of a hitter. He knows how to communicate. He knows how to teach in a lot of different ways. Sometimes I found and when you are trying to teach players, that your verbiage that you use with one player may not work with another. You might have to try something totally different. Or you might have to try something three or four times for him to understand what you're talking about. K Long is good at that. And K long is also very good at seeing something in game and making a minor adjustment with a player, saying, for example, you're starting too late or you're not getting your foot down. He's good at making those little adjustments with hitters.
THE MODERATOR: Nothing else for Joe today? Okay, thank you very much.

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