10/11/10 12:15 AM ET
NLDS Game 3 postgame interview: Manuel
By / MLB.com
CHARLIE MANUEL: I think when you look at it, it definitely was our pitching. The other night, Roy gave up some runs, but at the same time, you know, like our bullpen came in that night and really did a heck of a job. Roy Halladay and tonight Cole, both of 'em were outstanding. Cole was good.
Q. His game all the way tonight?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Not really, but he finished it, didn't he? I had a plan. I didn't have to use it, all right?
Q. Charlie, just a little bit about Cole tonight. What made him so effective tonight? He made the pitches when he needed them?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Offensively, his pitches were great. He was in good command and very aggressive. He went in and out on left-handed or right-handed hitters, and his stuff was real good. He had a good cutter, a good changeup, didn't throw many curveballs, but when he did, he used 'em smart. Pitched real good. Could throw the ball high when he wanted to, I felt like that was big.
Q. I asked Dusty about three starting pitchers in the playoffs thinking back to some of the playoff teams, and he came up with the same one I would have, Baltimore with McNally and Cuellar and Palmer. Can you think back to a team in the playoffs that has had such a good threesome at the top?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Probably was the last time in '95 with the Braves when I was in Cleveland, they had Maddux, Smoltz, and Glavine and Avery, I think, was their fourth guy. But at the same time, that was a good starting staff. But this staff here is, I would say, it sits right in there.
Q. You know, not to cast a dark cloud here, but are you a little disappointed with the way you guys swung the bats in the three games, and do you have to swing them better, especially if you see a team like San Francisco?
CHARLIE MANUEL: I'm never disappointed as long as a "W" comes out of it. That's our main objection, but at the same time, I also watched the game and I saw some well hit balls there tonight early. And I also saw where we just missed some balls. We had a few on the end of the bat that were just below the fat part of the bat that we hit pretty good. Like if we had have hit 'em a little better, we could have got something out of it. That's what I saw.
Do I want us to score more runs? Of course. And we're definitely very capable of it. I look at it this way, I'm always positive. When we start, somebody is in trouble. That's how I look at it. We're going to start sooner or later and when we start gettin' 'em, we'll take care of things.
Q. How about the layoff before the next series, does that concern you?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Like I said today, a lot of times I hear in the playoffs or the series or whatever, you know, when you got a long layoff, people say, 'Does it bother you?' That's the old stand by. If you do good, they say the layoff didn't hurt you.
I think you know us, I don't think we're going to start making excuses.
Q. What was your impression of the Reds young pitching in this series?
CHARLIE MANUEL: They got a lot of talent. Actually the -- they've got real big time talent. I think about this time next year, you're going to see a tremendous team out of the Reds. They got young pitching, big arms, and they got good, young pinch-hitters. And I know their defense was a little weak here in this series, but at the same time, during the season, it wasn't. It was top in the National League and they got tremendous infield. That's just the way it happened.
Q. Charlie a couple of hard hit balls you talked about were by Utley tonight. The fans ran him tonight and he responded.
CHARLIE MANUEL: He likes to hit in this yard. He swings the bat good and he -- but Chase is what I call an everyday player, every single day he brings it. On some days he's not very good. He'll keep right on swinging, right on working. Like I said the other day, he makes mistakes in the field sometimes and he'll keep right on. And he'll find it and that's what makes him a great player.
Q. How much easier is this starting lineup making your job?
CHARLIE MANUEL: Making my job? I'm good when you throw no-hitters and shutouts. I think I'm a pretty good manager, what do you think?
Q. So far so good (Chuckles.)
CHARLIE MANUEL: No, a lot easier. Good pitching is definitely -- especially in a short series, and also during the regular season, that's where it's at. Consistent pitching will keep you in a lot of games, and if you can catch a ball and stuff.
But all three of it goes together. Our defense has to catch balls and it helps make the pitching. And also our offense has to click. And you're right, Jimmy, when you say we can score more runs. And I don't have the answer to why we don't, believe me. If I had my way, we would score 20 or 30 tonight. We would be here a long time.
Q. Charlie, you can't top a no-hitter unless you throw a perfect game, but in some ways, Cole's performance tonight was almost as dominating as Roy's.
CHARLIE MANUEL: Yeah, when you throw a shutout like he did, that's big. How many did he give up, three or four?
CHARLIE MANUEL: OK. Five, yeah, like that's that's absolutely pitching a good game. He was sharp and I mean, he was good the whole nine innings.
Game 3 postgame interview: Hamels and Utley
Q. You came back to where you made your Major League debut. How does this, what you did here, rival that night?
COLE HAMELS: I don't think -- I can't think taking away from my debut because that was definitely a special moment I think for any kid that plays baseball in the backyard and tries to aspire to being a Major Leaguer. That right there is always going to be the ultimate moment, and I'm always going to remember that.
This moment right here is just another stepping stone toward trying to win a World Series, and I think that's something -- the way that we were able to do it, we're going to take that energy and that momentum on to the next series. But we do know that whoever we play, it's going to be tough.
But it is, to be able to go out and win all three games and not give -- not being able to give the other team the opportunity to take that momentum back, especially in their home ballpark, that's something special right there.
Q. Cole, could you talk about what was working well for you tonight? Is there any point at all that you felt like it was gone for a pitcher, too?
COLE HAMELS: You know, I think I was able to really establish my fastball early. I was able to hit my spots away. And in. And when you're feeling good and you're able to dial it up a notch, it's going to make it a little bit tougher, especially for the success. I know how -- what I can have with my changeup that makes that pitch harder to hit because you have to look for two different speeds. And then I'm able to hit my spots, and I think that helps.
Also, you know, I was able to work in a good cutter and a few good curveballs in the end. That's where -- when you're able to throw strikes and you have the defense behind you, you can't ask for anything more because you're playing good baseball.
Q. Cole, when the game ended, it seemed like on the field it was almost like any other game, and I sort of gathered by looking down that the mindset was, OK, we've done it, now we move on to the next round. Is that how it was?
COLE HAMELS: Yeah, when you have that playoff experience and we've been to the World Series the last two years, we know what it takes to get there. I don't think we want to get too carried away, but we are very happy. And when you don't do it at home, that's kind of saying something right there.
But we're going to move on and try to play the best baseball we can and try to win the next four games as fast and as quick as we can. Because our ultimate goal is to win the World Series and I think that's where we stand.
Q. Coming back to this game, going into the game, was there any one or two players that you were most concerned about from the Reds?
COLE HAMELS: You know, I've had tough at-bats with Votto and he's my MVP for the year. He's had a tremendous year, and I think he's not going to give in. I think that's where I had to bear down with him. Because at any moment, he can hit a home run to any side of the ballpark. He can definitely -- in their home ballpark, they can take the energy and steal it from you.
But at the same time, all their guys are very talented and they're all very good. You have to make good pitches all the time to them. And that's what I was able to do, and the defense was able to get the key outs.
KATY FEENEY: OK. We have Chase Utley joining us.
Q. Cole or Chase, you guys were on the worry end of this, can you give impressions of the Cincinnati club that you might have?
COLE HAMELS: Can you repeat that question. I was thinking Chase was going to answer it.
Q. Can you give any impression of the Cincinnati club going forward that you may or may not have?
CHASE UTLEY: The Reds have a very good team. The sky is the limit with those guys. They seem like they know how to win, so they're going to be pretty good in the future for sure.
Q. Cole, talk about you did quite a number against the best offensive team in the National League. How did you approach Cincinnati and how tough was it to pitch against them?
COLE HAMELS: They're also going to be a tough team. I was able to pitch against them during the year. We had a tough game right there because it was 1-0. This game you have to be able to go out and make your pitches, and I think that's kinda what it takes to be a good starting pitcher, especially in a game like this. If you're able to make your pitches and get the key outs, then you can't ask for anything more.
We were able to score in the first inning. I think that definitely kind of puts some momentum in our favor, and we just have to go out and shut 'em out. And that's what we were able to do.
Q. Chase, the fans tonight were reacting vocally to you before and during the game. Did you ever notice that kind of thing? Does it get in your head or do you put it aside easily?
CHASE UTLEY: You know, over the past few years, we've played in front of hostile crowds, so you try not to let that affect you and tune it out as much as you can. And as a team, I think we do a good job of that.
Q. Chase, can you give me a sense of the impression you've had of how this starting lineup has improved over the last few years and what that's meant for the club?
CHASE UTLEY: Well, I think just the experience that we've all gained has made us better players, playing in the postseason, playing in crunch situations. I think that makes you a better baseball player.
We've made some additions over the past few years to our pitching staff and seems like we always have a new guy in the lineup every year. And they adapt well, and the whole goal for us is to continue to improve. And I think we've done that.
Q. And specifically your starting pitchers, and the improvements?
CHASE UTLEY: The front office has done an outstanding job of acquiring some pretty good arms with both the Roys. Those are guys that have dominating stuff and you don't find those guys too often. And to pair them with Cole, makes it even better.
Q. Did you think that ball was gone?
CHASE UTLEY: No, actually, I didn't. I knew I hit it OK. I hit a ball in the first inning I thought I hit better than that one, but lucky for us, the weather is still warm and it's a good hitter's ballpark.
CHASE UTLEY: Slider, yeah.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.