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October 19, 2010

Ron Washington



Q. Can you just talk about the performance by Derek for you tonight?
RON WASHINGTON: Well, he did a great job. We certainly needed him to come right there and try to neutralize their best left-handed hitters and he did that. We was hoping we could get Tommy through five but they came out and were swinging the bats pretty well and just worked him up pretty good for three innings. Then Derek came in and settled things down a little bit until we could get in the flow of the game offensively, and we ended up doing that.

Q. In the fourth inning with the bases loaded and one out, how big was it for Elvis to get one out?
RON WASHINGTON: Well, it was huge. Especially with Gardner putting that ball in play. He played him a little bit to the side, to the opposite hole there. Derek made the pitch away from him and he hit it in the hole and he made an excellent play diving to get it. That really minimized the damage right there. They took the lead 3-2, but minimized the damage and we got out of the inning.

Q. Against Tampa Bay, you had them up against the wall and let them back in; have you learned any lessons about how you'll close the Yankees out without letting them back in?
RON WASHINGTON: We are not thinking about how we are going to close anyone out. We are going to go out there and play baseball, and whatever the game asks us to do, we'll do it. We are not coming to the ballpark tomorrow night with the only thing on our minds of closing somebody out. We are coming to the ballpark tomorrow with our minds on baseball and our minds reacting to whatever the game says we have to react to. If it happens, it happens. And if it don't, it doesn't happen.

Q. How important was it, Cruz tagging up at second to make it a three-run inning?
RON WASHINGTON: The ball was hit deep to center field and we certainly needed to try to move up a bag right there and it opened up first base and they ended up walking Murphy and then Molina ended up getting a three-run shot to put us ahead and from that point the offense opened up. Those are the type of things that you have to take advantage of in the ballgame, and we did.

Q. You've been to Yankee Stadium a lot of times, have you seen it empty out this early, new and old Yankee Stadium, this early?
RON WASHINGTON: No, I haven't. But Yankee fans, they are so into wins so much -- I really don't have anything to say about that, other than the fact that I'm glad my guys finally opened up offensively tonight.

Q. Can you talk about what Bengie has meant to you coming to this team, middle of the season, and what he's done?
RON WASHINGTON: Well, you know, the things he's doing for us offensively, I think it's been forgotten, because he got off to a bad start this year. But if you look on the back of his baseball card, he's always been an RBI guy. He finds ways to get RBIs in, and today we certainly needed someone to step up and in a crucial situation there, he stepped up and got us a lead in that ballgame and from that point, we figured some things out offensively and put some more runs on the board.
He's certainly been a big lift to my young pitching staff, the way he called ballgames back there, and since we have gotten into the playoff, his game, mentally, has just elevated.

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