PrintPrint © 2004 MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.

Arroyo off-day quotes
10/14/2004 2:14 PM ET
Q. Do you feel the weight of the entire season on your shoulders right now?

BRONSON ARROYO: I don't feel the weight of the entire season. I obviously feel a lot of pressure from this series. But, you know, we're not down 3-0, but obviously we're backed into a corner and there's going to be a huge, huge game. If we don't win, I don't know if it's ever been done before to come back from 3-0 in the ALCS, I don't know if it's ever happened. It's going to be a lot more pressure-packed than the Anaheim game but I just have to go out and pitch the same way I would if we were up 2-0.

Q. I was wondering, to what degree, if any, do you think the emotional game that you were involved in on July 24th here, to what degree that kick-started the season, if at all?

BRONSON ARROYO: For us, it's tough to say because I know things started getting a little bit better after that point for us. But you know it was a huge win obviously for that day. But as baseball players, we come into the clubhouse and it's so day-to-day. We look at winning today. We don't worry about yesterday or tomorrow. I feel like it's the same way going out tomorrow. July 24 is not going to have any effect on the game tomorrow night. Just going out and trying to have a good start and get a win.

Q. Losing a star player could be either deflating to a team or a rallying cry where everybody steps up. What is it for you guys now knowing that Curt Schilling is out for Game 5?

BRONSON ARROYO: I didn't know for sure that he was out for Game 5. I don't know if he said that today.

ALCS Home / News / Video / Audio / Photos

Q. Terry said?

BRONSON ARROYO: He's definitely not going to throw? Personally, I think he's one of the biggest, if not the biggest addition to this team this off-season. If he can't go for the rest of the series, I definitely think it's hurting us. Any way you look at it, guys can step up, Derek Lowe, Tim Wakefield, whoever can take the mound and throw an unbelievable game and we can win, regardless. We have guys on the staff that can pick up where he left off. But he's obviously Curt Schilling for a reason and if we don't have him in the lineup I think it's definitely not going to help us in any way.

Q. What do you think are the reasons you've been able to find your success this season and how has Varitek helped in your development?

BRONSON ARROYO: I think this year I've grown as a pitcher, just having an opportunity to take the ball every fifth day. It's the first organization that's given me the opportunity to go out as a starter and not worry about going back to the bullpen or be sent down to AAA. I think I've just grown mentally, getting used to the hitters in the American League, being able to work with Jason, as you said. He's helped me out a lot. He studies the game so much, him and Doug Mirabelli come and run the meetings on the hitters, what we want to do against these guys and it helps out a lot, you know Jason is back there. He's your No. 1 fan behind the plate. He wants you to do as well for yourself as he does for the team.

Without Varitek behind the plate, I don't think this pitching staff would be as good as it is. I think Curt said sometime during the middle of the year, I think it's the first catcher that he has had that he's let call the game without shaking him off. Coming from a guy who has been around as long as he has, it's definitely saying a lot about Jason.

Q. I think you led the Major Leagues in hit batsmen this year. I wonder if you could speak to pitching inside, particularly against the Yankee lineup and what advantage that brings you and what danger there might be in that?

BRONSON ARROYO: Yeah, you know, leading the American League in hit batsmen was just a coincidence. I probably throw inside less than probably 75 percent of the starters in the American League. But when I do go inside it's for a purpose; I have to pitch in there. And against the Yankee lineup, it's definitely probably, you know, the lineup that I have faced the entire season that I've got to go in there more than any other time. The first three guys in the order, Sheffield, A-Rod and Jeter at some point in the game, I've got to get inside on them. If I don't, they are just going to look away, look away, they are going to hit my breaking ball, good 0-2 breaking balls they are going to hit and put them in play. So I'm going to have to pitch inside at some point, and you know, I know Sheffield has alluded to a few times that they have got hit or they get hit on purpose. I realize they don't like it. Nobody likes getting hit with a 90-mile-an-hour fastball, but regardless of the situation, I do have to pitch the way I think I can to win and that's the way I'll go about it tomorrow.

Q. The Yankees seem to find ways to win, different ways in the playoffs, seem to step it up a bit. Is there anything you've noticed in watching them in the last week that you need to adjust your style to counteract that?

BRONSON ARROYO: You know, for me personally, I think watching the last two games, it's hard because, you know, Pedro and Curt pitch such different styles of games than I do. It's hard for me to emulate what they are doing out there. Even take the results that they have had on the mound out with me.

So I'll probably go back and watch more video of when I've pitched against these guys and try to adjust my game accordingly. They obviously do all of the little things to win ballgames. But from my standpoint, it's going to be -- you know I'm going to have to pitch my game regardless. I know they are going to bunt and hit-and-run and do all of the small things. I'm definitely going to have to try to watch the guys on the bases.

I noticed last night Jeter took a bag very quick off first base and I think A-Rod has done the same in the Twins series and that could have won them a game. I think I'll just have to be aware of those guys on the bases.

Q. Just to clarify, did you say that the first three hitters, you have to pitch them more inside than you do hitters from other teams or other lineups? Is there something specific about them that changes your pattern?

BRONSON ARROYO: Yeah, all three of those guys are great at putting the ball in play, especially with two strikes on breaking balls that are a foot off the plate or even fastballs on the outer half. And if I don't keep them honest on the inner half at some point in the game they are just going to knock you around the park.

I said earlier on July 24th, the reason I was going in on A-Rod was because he hits balls 400, 500 feet to right centerfield, which he does, if you consistently stay on the outer half. And I think Gary Sheffield and Derek Jeter are no different. Those guys you definitely have to keep the ball in on at some point.

Q. What will you do tonight to prepare or will you try to forget about the game until tomorrow?

BRONSON ARROYO: I'll do the same thing I did before the Anaheim game. I'll go home and have a good dinner, relax, try not to exert too much energy. I like to treat every day the same. So I'll just chill out at home and do the normal things I do, take my dog for a walk tomorrow and come to the park ready to play.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.