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October 3, 2011

Rick Porcello


Q. So I hear you grew up in New Jersey, right?

Q. I went to college in New Jersey. Your dad was a big Yankee fan, right?

Q. Used to take you to Yankee Stadium all the time?

Q. Where were your allegiances when you were a kid and talk about that?
RICK PORCELLO: I grew up in New Jersey. Parents would take me and my brothers, usually take us out one day of school a year and go to a Yankee game and just growing up watching them play, going to Yankee Stadium. I was actually a Mets fan growing up, but my parents were both Yankee fans. Mom loves Derek Jeter. Might like him more than me, but... So I grew up around it. I know a lot of the tradition and stuff.

Q. To this day, they're still big Yankee fans?
RICK PORCELLO: No, not anymore. They're big Detroit Tigers fans now.

Q. When you're not playing?
RICK PORCELLO: I think they're pretty much committed to rooting for me and the Tigers right now. So I don't think they watch many Yankee games anymore. Leading up to my professional career, they were Yankee fans.

Q. What are their names?
RICK PORCELLO: Fred and Pat.

Q. When you've gone back to Yankee Stadium with friends and family and stuff around, have you ever felt a sense of more pressure pitching against that team? Is it sometimes overwhelming?
RICK PORCELLO: I don't think it necessarily has a lot to do with the team as much as knowing there's a lot of people I grew up with at the games. I think the added pressure to that, just knowing they're there present at the ballpark. I'll always have my family there and friends and teachers and people that I grew up with.
So I think just having them there and wanting to perform well for them is a little added pressure. It's not too bad.

Q. How would you describe how your regular season went?
RICK PORCELLO: At times it went well. Other times I had some struggles. Still learning how to be consistent over the course of the season. I had some stretches where I threw the ball really well and some stretches where I didn't throw the ball well. So I think it was -- obviously I have high expectations for myself, and I don't think it was nearly as well as I'm capable of pitching over the course of an entire year. I learned a lot, and just going to keep improving and working hard to get things right.

Q. Rick, can you just kind of go over your family ties to the area. Your brother is a pitching coach somewhere, is that right?
RICK PORCELLO: He's not a pitching coach anymore. He was a volunteer assistant at Seton Hall University. My younger brother attends New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark. He previously was at Seton Hall and transferred there. Myself and my younger brother went to Seton Hall Prep. My older brother went to Newark Academy in Livingston, New Jersey. We grew up in New Jersey our entire life and been there, so.

Q. Rick, getting to the game itself, you and Scherzer have maybe not exactly the same propelling you into the playoffs this year, but certainly your first playoff game. You watched how he pitched yesterday and his success. How excited are you to get your first playoff start? And what do you draw from the fact that a kid like Scherzer, just like you, can have great success the first time around in this?
RICK PORCELLO: Yeah, I mean, obviously I'm chomping at the bit to get out there. Definitely excited. Watching Max go out there and throw the ball the way he did was big for our team.
I'm ready to go. I want to get out there and show everybody what I can do. Most importantly, show my team what I can do, and try and help us move on to the next round.

Q. Rick, how much do you think pitching the pressure game of 163 a couple years ago will help you tomorrow?
RICK PORCELLO: I think just kind of dealing with the atmosphere and remembering what that was like and remembering what I did in that game and my preparation for that is going to help a little bit for tomorrow. And having a little bit of experience in a playoff-type atmosphere should help going into it. This time around, it's on our home turf for me, so I'll have that going for me. So it will be a little bit easier than pitching on the road.

Q. Why were you a Mets fan?
RICK PORCELLO: I don't know. I guess when I was pretty much old enough to start following baseball and really be in touch with the players, was right around the 2000 team and they went to the World Series, and just those guys, I don't know, I just rooted for them. I always liked the fact that they were kind of more of an underdog in New York. I don't know, that's kind of -- I hooked on with them and that was my team.
THE MODERATOR: Thanks for coming in.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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