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October 21, 2012

Bruce Bochy


Q.  Have you got your lineup yet, is it the same one?
BRUCE BOCHY:  Same lineup that we had the last game in St. Louis.  Posey is in 4th, Pence is 5th and Belt's at first base.  Same lineup.

Q.  Tomorrow, aside from Vogelsong, will all your pitchers be available?
BRUCE BOCHY:¬† Yeah, Timmy's available, Bumgarner, he's available in the bullpen.¬† And at this stage it's all‑hands‑on deck, as we keep saying.¬† We still ‑‑ I mean, we're still in a must‑win situation, we know it.
They'll all be down there and ready to go.

Q.  This is your fifth elimination game of the postseason, and you didn't play one in 2010.  What do you think the makeup of this team is that makes it thrive in the situation so far?
BRUCE BOCHY:  Well, I think more than anything it says a lot about the character of the club and that "never say die" attitude, and you know what's at stake.  And they're handling it well.  Both clubs have been in a similar situation.  It's about going out there and playing like there's no tomorrow.  And that's how they play.  That's the only way you can play, because that's where we're at right now.  And that's how you want them to hit the field and just leave it all out there and you see what happens.

Q.  You mentioned after Game4 how Hunter was really hard on himself and you told him, Look, we just don't do that kind of thing here.  I wonder when you think that laid back mentality became a part of the culture here and where it came from?
BRUCE BOCHY:  Anytime you lose a game or you go through a tough stretch the last thing you want to do is either point fingers or take full responsibility.  It's about the team.  We all try to do something to help win a ballgame.
And if something happens out there on a particular player it's ‑‑ you don't want him taking all the blame for a game because we all can do something to help contribute to win the ballgame.¬† That's how you have to look at it.¬† This game can be humbling at times and if you take the blame too much at times I think it can affect your play.
Now, not with Hunter.  Hunter said this, he said, Hey, I can handle this.  In fact, it makes me play better when I say something like that.
But I think more than anything it's about 25 guys all pulling for each other and when things don't go well there's no pointing fingers, and including not just yourself, but all try to do something to help win a ballgame.

Q.  A couple of players said not only did Pence say something before Game 5 but you said something.  Is that different, did you find that moment where you needed to say something or do you say stuff all the time like that?
BRUCE BOCHY:  Well, at times when you think something needs to be said, but I really was trying to tee it up for Hunter and let him go, more than anything.  But we knew what was at stake.  These guys have done just a tremendous job of going out there and fighting and doing all they can to keep playing and not go home.  And that's how you have to look at it.
So I just felt like I should say something there before Hunter did because these guys ‑‑ I couldn't be prouder of how they're going out there every day and fighting and that's what the game is about.¬† You want to be in this situation and competing at this time of year and these guys are having fun with it.

Q.  Your roster position players is virtually completely different today than it was in 2010.  How much say do you generally have before acquiring a player, working with Brian Sabean and how impressive is the job he's done in revamping the roster?
BRUCE BOCHY:¬† Brian and I talk about the club all the time, whether it's off‑season, during the season, ways we can improve it.¬† And Brian does ask me my thoughts.¬† And ultimately it's going to be his call on acquiring players or making trades.¬† But he certainly includes me in the staff at times.¬† But he's done a tremendous job of helping us get to this point with our new faces, Scutaro and Pence, and Brian's always done that.
Last year getting Beltran, we really needed another bat.¬† What hurt us in the whole deal was what he ‑‑ when he went on the DL.¬† Brian did all he could.
He'll do all he can to help us win.  We know it.  We appreciate it and it's nice to have that every year when you're in a situation to get to the postseason, that he'll do all he can to help us.

Q.  I realize this is a very hypothetical question at the moment, but back on April 4th if somebody told you you could give the ball to Matt Cain for the game that gets you into the World Series, how would you have felt?
BRUCE BOCHY:  Well, I guess I'll start with if you told me we were two games away from getting to where you want to go, I think every club would take that.  And being Game 6 and have Vogelsong on the mound, you take your chances.  Of course with Matt you would.
So it's a great time to be playing.  Believe me, we're excited about getting this back home and still playing.  It beats what could have happened.
These guys, again, they're excited about it, having fun with it.  It's going to be a great game tonight.  You have two good ones going.

Q.  You're the first manager to manage in the postseason against both Tony and Mike.  And I was just wondering from your standpoint, what are those similarities and differences you see between this Cardinals team and previous Cardinals teams that you've managed against?
BRUCE BOCHY:  I was asked that a couple of days ago.  Both have done a great job.  I respect and revered Tony and his career and what he accomplished.  And of course the job he did last year, especially handling the bullpen the way he did.
And Mike's done a tremendous job with the club.  It's not an easy act to follow when you're following a Hall of Famer like Tony and keep things going as they are.
So I think they're similar, really, in the way that they have their guys ready to play and the success that they've had.  It's probably a case where you have two good baseball guys, one obviously managed for years and Mike has stepped in and I think learned a lot from watching Tony and this ballclub, working with the Cardinals.

Q.¬† There was a time where it seemed Zito never knew where the ball was going when it left his hand.¬† Now it seems like he's evolved into a terrific pitcher, and kind of like the Glavine‑Maddux mold.¬† How much is it him, Rags, you guys, a combination of things?
BRUCE BOCHY:  Well, I think Barry really deserves most of the credit along with Dave Righetti, with them working together.  Sometimes in this game you've got to make changes, adjustments, that's what the game is about.  And Barry's done that.  He's a little different than what he was when he won the Cy Young.  Maybe he doesn't have that same velocity.  So he's had to I think change his style of pitching a little bit.  And he's come up with the cutter.  And I think he's pitching down more than he used to.  When he was 88, 89, he pitched up a little more.  But now he's using all four quadrants, which I think he needs to do.  And he did an unbelievable job of doing that in the last game.
Sometimes it takes a while for that to happen.  It's not that easy to change your pitching style.  But I think Barry has learned that and worked hard at it, including this winter and now it's working for him.

Q.  We saw Madison working out with the rest of the team yesterday here.  How confident are you that he fixed whatever was wrong with him between that last time to be used in the last few games?
BRUCE BOCHY:¬† I talked to Madison yesterday.¬† We talked about this, and he's really ‑‑ he really felt good about the adjustment he's made getting back to how he threw when he came up here.¬† He didn't realize a couple of things he was doing.¬† And one in particular was the bigger turn that he was making.¬† And sometimes you do that to add a little bit to your fastball.
So I think he threw ten pitches off the mound yesterday just to reinforce that.  Sometimes you get out of sync, whether it's a batter, he does a couple of things sometimes that throw his timing off and same as a pitcher.
So I think he's real happy with where he's at and getting back to his same delivery that he had when he was throwing the ball well.

Q.  Obviously you have a terrific catcher of your own, but as a former catcher I'm wondering what your impressions are of Molina and what makes him as good as he is behind the plate?
BRUCE BOCHY:¬† Well, you know, he comes from a pretty good background, a baseball family that I'm sure he's learned so much from.¬† We had Bengie here.¬† When you grow up, I guess, with ‑‑ you have two brothers catching, your dad's taught you, that works.¬† It helps, I think, speed up your progress as a player.
Yadi just does a great job of handling the staff.  You know how well he receives the ball.  He throws well.  He calls a great game.  Pitchers like throwing to him.  I haven't had him, but you can see that.  And he just has a great feel for the game.
And now he's gotten so good on the other side.  He's really improved in the last few years with the bat and just with his average, with driving the ball.

Q.  Is it ever important to stress maybe to the younger guys how fleeting and how rare these opportunities are to be this close to a World Series?
BRUCE BOCHY:  That's been brought up, sure.  It's not easy to get where we're at right now.  And you realize that it could be a while before that happens.  So this has been something that's been talked about.  And that's why you should enjoy and have fun with this.  It's intense out there, but you also have to appreciate where you're at and how hard you've worked to get here and how hard it is and difficult it is to get to this point and have fun with it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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