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October 22, 2006

Tony La Russa


Q. Kenny Rogers obviously pitched very well after the first inning, can you clarify for us what took place with the umpires and with what appeared to be, at least on television, a substance on his hand of some sort?
TONY LA RUSSA: It's not important to talk about, I could clarify how he pitched. I thought he pitched very well. I thought we hit the ball better than two hits, but we didn't hit the ball more than enough to get three runs. We should have gotten more with the contact he made, but he pitched very well.

Q. Was that the reason you went out to talk to the umpire?
TONY LA RUSSA: Like I said, it's not important. I wouldn't discuss it. When a guy pitches like that, as a team, we don't take things away from anybody.

Q. We talked a little in the last series about the trouble the Cards have had against left-handed pitching. Can you talk about whatever theory you have on it. Is it the certain type of left-hander, too, where a guy who mixes up pitches and moves the ball around like Glavine did and Rogers tonight?
TONY LA RUSSA: The last two times a left-hander started we won the game. We won Glavine's game and Perez's game.
If a guy pitches well, right or left, then we're going to have trouble, like any club would, and Rogers pitched well.

Q. Could you talk about Kenny Rogers. He seems to just get better with age. He's almost 42 years old yet he looked like he was 25 out there.
TONY LA RUSSA: I mean I just give him credit that I think he deserves. When Jim gets up here, he'll enjoy talking about Rogers more than I will.

Q. One more follow-up on the lefties: The way the series now is stacked up, you're going to have to beat one or maybe two the rest of the way, because you could face four more the way the series is. Does that worry you at all?
TONY LA RUSSA: Face three more, right?

Q. Yeah, three more.
TONY LA RUSSA: I mean it's something we pay attention to just because during the season it never seemed to make sense and because we paid attention to it we had our ideas about how we could improve what we've done or what we would do against them. And reality is that two of their best starting pitchers are left-handed. But those two right-handers they throw at you are no slouches either. Whoever they send out is a quality starting pitcher. We have to score, and we've got to pitch --
Like today, I thought Jeff, they mishit some balls for hits and he threw a couple of balls in the middle and a home run, and RBI double. He pitched well enough to win, if we could have done something better offensively. If we want to win, we have to do both things, hit enough and pitch enough.

Q. I know you're not happy right now, but to come in here without pitching Carpenter and Suppan, and to have them set up and to get a split, wouldn't you take that coming in?
TONY LA RUSSA: Well, I'm not unhappy. To me, the way I judge the way I feel or the way our coaches feel, our ownership, fans, front office, if our club goes out there and takes its best shot, plays as hard as it can, then the other team has talent, they're trying to win, we tip our caps. I felt like for two days we've come in here and competed really well. I think, like I said, I thought we made enough contact. We needed a few more hits and maybe have a run or two on the board, but I definitely am not unhappy. I feel like we're competing the way we've competed all October. If we keep doing that we've got a real shot.

End of FastScripts...

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