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Garner postgame quotes
10/07/2004 10:13 PM ET
Q. When you go to Lidge in the seventh, was that reflective of the importance of the game?

PHIL GARNER: Yes, he's done that for me a couple of times in the course of the season. He was well rested. I felt good about it, and I'd do it again.

Q. How well did you think he pitched?

PHIL GARNER: Well, we've seen him pitch a lot better. He's been, over the course of the last couple months, just lights out. They got to him a little bit today. They put some balls in play, got to it. He didn't get the strikes earlier in the count like he has been doing. But it did show he's been a little bit human, because he's pitched very, very well for us.

Q. What was the situation with the bullpen phone and Bobby's protest?

PHIL GARNER: Well, I had Lidge up, when the first guy got on in the inning. We kept picking the phone up, picking the phone up, it was busy, it was busy. You can't see the bullpen from there. My first thought was to send a player down there. If you do that, you're running across the field, they're going to think something's going on.

I did the only thing I knew what to do. It's happened to us twice this summer, that I went to the umpire. That's why I ran out there. I said, "Look, I can't get the phone to work. Get somebody down there." So finally, it wasn't until actually, at that point, when one of our players stepped out and was yelling, "Pick up the phone in the bullpen," that somebody picked up the phone in the bullpen. It rang back at our place. Evidently, it worked from that point on. We didn't have any problems with it yesterday. We didn't have any problems with it earlier in the game. It was just at that moment.

Q. I know you've said you brought Lidge in earlier before, but it is unusual to bring your closer in as early as the seventh. Does that say something about the importance of these games, and do you manage them differently?

PHIL GARNER: We've been doing that for two months. Every game has been just as important as tonight's game. Lidge has been in the seventh inning a couple of times this year, actually brought him in in situations to get us out, out of a jam. He's done a terrific job of doing it. He's just been fantastic about it.

We've kind of had our backs against the wall for some time now, so, yes, every out's important. We don't want to give this game away and save somebody for Saturday. So this is very, very important. I feel like Lidge has been so good that you could put him in there.

If you take a look at the game, the flow of the game, we really weren't putting a lot of offense on the board, either. So I felt like we better try to shut it down.

Q. In the fourth you were up 2-0 and Biggio was bunting, did you have the bunt on or was he going on his own?

PHIL GARNER: I had the bunt on. He had Hampton in a good situation, I thought he was going to get a fastball. He got a fastball, he just hit it right at Chipper.

Q. Did you take it off?

PHIL GARNER: Yes, I did.

Q. Beltran, physically, do you think maybe he was not as good as if he had not gotten hit by the pitch yesterday?

PHIL GARNER: None of us really swung the bats good today. I don't think I could look at Beltran and say that he was did any worse than anybody else, or if there was a reason for it. I give their pitchers credit; they did a pretty good job today.

Q. Would you give your impressions of the game today, please.

PHIL GARNER: Well, tough game. They pitched well. They came up with some big hits when they needed them. Yesterday we got our big hits; today they got their big hits. We made pitches we wanted to make, and I'll give them credit, they put them in play and made them count.

Q. What did you know about Bobby's (Cox) contention you were delaying the game with the phone troubles?

PHIL GARNER: Yes, I kept trying the phone several times I honestly can see how he can feel that way. I had no alternative. I think this is too grand a stage to try to pull a stunt like that. I wouldn't do that at all. And I don't think I needed to. Actually, I think Lidge was ready, but you always call down there to make sure.

I had two guys up, and I usually call down and say which one I want to come out of the bullpen. There's no reason for me to do that. I feel certain he was ready at the time I wanted him, but we had called several times within the course of a minute and we couldn't get anybody. It was busy. We couldn't get anybody to answer the phone. And not until our bullpen coach, Mark Bailey picked up the phone, did it work back at our phone, it seemed to work.

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