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Ron Gardenhire, postgame quotes
10/09/2004 10:13 PM ET
Q. Gardy, I presume Rincon was going to pitch the eighth whether Johan pitched six or seven?

RON GARDENHIRE: That was his inning. Balfour did a great job. That's been his inning the whole year. With Nathan throwing as many pitches as he did, he just threw a bad pitch to Sierra, and the guy did what those Yankees do. It's unbelievable. Rincon has done that all year for us, been there all year for us. I can only think of two times he hadn't gotten it done. It's a little unfortunate tonight, but that kid has busted his tail for us all year long.

Q. Could Santana just not go another inning?

RON GARDENHIRE: He was done. He was going to go back out there. Then the inning got really long and he was trying to stretch, and he told me you better get someone to go back out with me. He told me he was tired and would go at least one more.

As the inning went along, you could see he was done. The kid had done everybody he could do. He did what he was supposed to do.

Q. This series sort of reinforces that the Yankees are still the Yankees?

RON GARDENHIRE: They find a way. They've got so many great hitters. We battled. We got a lead on them, but it just tells you what their baseball team is all about. You walk a guy, and they get a base hit, and they start off with a jam shot and Sheffield gets a base hit, and you walk a guy, and the next thing you know you're in trouble.

They've got so many hitters, and that's what kills you. Rincon hasn't given up too many of those. I think when you saw him in New York, he struck out five out of six. He made a rough pitch to Sierra and he's done what he's done for a long time.

Q. Ron, in the 11th inning you elected not to guard the line?

RON GARDENHIRE: We did have him, but he elected to move off. My coaching staff had put him on the line and he backed off of it trying to look for a pitch. He made a mistake. We put him on the line, and he moved off a little bit for the pitch and didn't feel the guy was going to hit the ball. The kid made a mistake.

Q. Ron, you guys didn't really execute offensively. That kind of hurt you throughout the series?

RON GARDENHIRE: Absolutely. We had the bunt on and we put the hit and run on, and it was kind of a mess right there, a little dispointing, a sluggish situation where we could have done some damage.

We had a lead, we did what we were supposed to do, but the one guy that has gotten it done all year didn't get it done today. Nathan gave us everything he had and Lohse came in and did a good job, and Steve was trying to get him to do an inside move when Arod stole third.

We were trying to get him to pick up his leg and it doesn't work out. If he would had have picked up his leg on that pitch, we would have had him. That didn't work out. We had pretty good plans, we just didn't execute.

Q. I was going to kind of ask what you just answered, did you pay enough attention to A-Rod?

RON GARDENHIRE: We were trying to give the catcher the sign on the inside move. We paid attention the time before that, from the dugout, we were trying to get him to an inside move there, but it didn't work out. The execution, we failed to do that a couple times.

Q. Even with that lineup do you feel like you're closer to them than you were a year ago?

RON GARDENHIRE: I think we gave them a lot. I think they had to battle their tails off. That's no consolation to our baseball team. We were missing our catcher, who was one of the better hitters. We'll have him back next year sometime.

There was a lot of new people that came up. Just like I told my baseball team in the clubhouse, people might try to tear us down, but the people who are going to do that didn't play against that baseball team and don't realize how good that baseball team is. We're a damn good baseball team.

We matched up as good as we possibly could with those Yankees. Don't let people tear this team down. We played a great game against the team who has the chance to go to the World Series.

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