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October 23, 2010

Charlie Manuel


THE MODERATOR: Questions for Charlie Manuel.

Q. Are there any changes to your lineup today?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Putting Jimmy Rollins in the 1 hole. Move Vic down to 6.

Q. Can you talk about that decision?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Yeah, the last couple of games I seen him play, he's got more legs underneath him. His foundation at the plate has been better. The other day when he showed me he could run, like I've always looked at him as our lead-off hitter, and he is the guy. He's very knowledgeable how to run the bases and steal and stuff.
It's not that Victorino can't do it, but this guy's -- he's a top-notch, like, base stealer and a base runner. And Victorino also has some success in postseason hitting down in the order in the sixth and seventh hole.
And I felt like that's the best way for us to go. I feel like that's our best lineup. I've always felt that way ever since the start of the season.

Q. Do you feel like it does anything for Jimmy's psyche in terms of getting him to where he's always been?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I've seen him on TV, like he's -- it's actually the part I like about him. He's kind of got a little hot dog to him, he's got a little, what do you call it, charisma, and he gets over there starts telling the fans to yell and all this stuff.
And like the more that he talks, the more I think he's going to put into performing, if that makes sense. And I like him -- like when you say back a guy up against the wall, I like to get Jimmy backed up, backing up what he says. And I like to hear him talk and things. That's how I like to look at it. He definitely -- him and Victorino both create energy and both of them are high-talented players, but like I look at that as our best balanced lineup and our best lineup.

Q. Speaking of that energy, is it important in a game of this magnitude to get the lead early and get the fans and get the crowd into it, to help feed off of that, or does it not matter?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I think anytime that you're in postseason and stuff, whether you're on the road or at home, I think getting a lead is very important. But also when you're at home it helps even more, because I think you gain momentum like right when a game starts, and that's big. And that's kind of -- and hopefully like you make the other team like really press or whatever, but at the same time when we score runs we also need to add some.
And I think that's the whole key. I think -- I've always said this about our fans. They've always helped us as far as just our ballpark in general, our fans and the effort and the energies that it creates.
And I think that's a big thing. I think tonight's -- we put everything we've got on the line.

Q. When you told Jimmy, did you tell him to his face and what was his reaction about being back in the leadoff spot?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I didn't tell him yet.

Q. Does he know?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I didn't go down and tell him. I told Vic; I didn't tell Jimmy.

Q. What was Victorino's reaction?
CHARLIE MANUEL: It was fine. He was totally fine with it.

Q. You get to see these guys only six times a year. But how impressed are you by the development of a kid like Cain?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I think -- something the last, about the last I'd say three years, three or four years, Cain's always been -- he's always been a big pitcher. People have always talked about how good he's going to be. I think from the other day when I saw him pitch, he was more of a pitcher the other day than he was before. I think when I used to see him before he used to throw a lot of fastballs, and I think the other day he pitched.
He used all of his pitches and his command was better. And he's got a high ceiling. And he's going to be good for a long time.

Q. What have you heard about Halladay's health and would he be available today, tomorrow, if needed?
CHARLIE MANUEL: According to him he's okay. Haven't talked to the trainer or doctor yet. I saw him. He said he's fine. He said he's ready to go. He said anytime that I need him he's ready to go. That's what he told me. But I'll go back and check with our medical staff too. But Roy's going to be fine. I feel good about him.

Q. Would you be hesitant to use him in case you guys do win these next two games, so he doesn't further injure himself?
CHARLIE MANUEL: More than likely I'm not going to -- definitely I can pretty much answer I'm not going to use him tonight. We'll see tomorrow, like if we get to tomorrow we'll see. We're going to get to tomorrow. I don't want to say if we get there, because we are going to get there.

Q. Did the off day come at a really opportune time for a guy like Contreras and Madson, both whom had pitched three straight days or two straight days, one of them, and they had thrown a lot of pitches?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Yeah, I think it did, because one of the reasons -- because of the travel back, like getting over -- sometimes you get a little jet lag from the time change and also from the West Coast to here. And I think they could have used the rest anyway, but I think just because those circumstances, too, I think we're going to benefit from that.

Q. Given that Oswalt pitched the other night, is there something you're going to look for early to see if even the extra couple pitches there may affect him or not?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I think when you see Oswalt pitch tonight, I think if he's hurt -- if he's not like you expect him to be, I think his velocity is going to be way down or his command -- getting the ball over the plate, it will be hard for him or whatever. But at the same time I don't expect that at all. If that happens, it would surprise me.

Q. What did you think of Texas eliminating the Yankees and being the potential World Series foe?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I saw the game last night. I watched every pitch in it and everything that happened. And I think that the Yankees got outplayed. And I think Texas did a tremendous job. I was surprised, actually, that last night when the Yankees, as far as their hitting -- I felt like they started chasing a lot of bad balls out of the strike zone, and they've got a tremendous hitting team.
I thought maybe they were definitely trying to catch up too quick or trying too hard. But I don't know. But that's how the game goes. And that's a good -- that just goes to show you that anybody -- you can get beat anytime in baseball and I think that happens all the time to a lot of teams and everything. That's part of it. That's baseball and that's the part that's hard to explain.

Q. Chase's struggled a little bit during the series. What are you seeing from him at the plate, and what do you think he needs to do to get going? Any adjustments you can make with him right now?
CHARLIE MANUEL: If you've been watching these games as we go through, Chase either puts -- puts one or two good at-bats together during the game, and when he's really on, like he's going to hit anywhere from two, three, four balls a day hard.
And I think it's consistent in his swing right now. I think that he really hasn't really found what I call his real -- his good timing and his rhythm and balance. Chase Utley, he's what I call a technique hitter. He uses strength and everything as far as balance and rhythm and hitting the ball correctly.
I think at times that he -- I think he doesn't feel like he's right. And it kind of looks that way. But he might find it tonight. That's the way the game goes. I'm pulling for him to find it tonight, okay?

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