10/14/2002 00:07 am ET
Angels post-game quotes
Mike Scioscia, Angels manager
First of all, I want to tell you how proud we are of our club. They battled the whole way. I couldn't feel better for a group of guys anywhere than how hard our team's played this year to reach this level. It's such a great achievement for these guys. I know they're honored and they're having a good time now, but what an effort they gave. I congratulate them.
I'd like to congratulate the Minnesota Twins. They've had a terrific season. They played this series as tough as anybody we played all year. With a break here or there, us winning four out of five games could have been flip-flopped the other way because they played terrific baseball. They're a class unit, a class act. I know Ron Gardenhire runs things over there the way they're supposed to be run. They're going to be good for a long time. I'd like to congratulate them.
As well as you guys have hit, I couldn't imagine you expecting (Adam) Kennedy to hit three home runs there. Also, there was a bunt.
Right. Adam, I think it goes without saying, he's swinging the bat extremely well. In that situation, we were trying to get a bunt down. Once he got a strike, we looked at the configuration, they were pitching for a bunt. We thought it was good to let Adam turn it loose and see if he can get a pitch to hit. A couple pitches later, he did.
He hasn't had a lot of at-bats against lefties this year. Did you think about pinch-hitting for him in the seventh?
We consider things, moves that might have to be made. Adam has, the last probably two months of the season, has started against some lefties again. He's swinging the bat much better all around, and it carried over to some lefties.
Just like last night, he hit a bullet to first base against a lefty. When he swings the bat well, he can hit anybody.
Even though most of the players really haven't been here for about 10 years, is there a sense of a kind of -- maybe not just joy, but relief that this club, after 40-some-odd years, has finally been able to get to the World Series? How intense is that?
I think there is a small portion of relief with some of the guys that have been through the wars here. We have some incredibly talented players on this team that, until this year, you have to put it together to reach the playoffs. That was the first step. I think they felt it was something in their careers where they look back that was going to be a big point, "Hey, we were in a championship-caliber club and made the playoffs."
Moving forward, as you get into playoffs and keep having success, I think that it does more to validate how good these guys are. Now that they can put a championship banner and a championship ring with their great careers, that's what we play for. We play for championships, for rings. We play for the feeling of playing this game, not the money. That's what the passion that our guys have is all about.
So you couldn't -- these guys couldn't care less about the money they make, when you get to this level and you achieve something that -- right now there's nobody in our league that is standing. We're the last club. We won the championship. When you can do that, what a source of pride for these guys, especially the guys that have played for such a long time.
The third home run, the bunt was on, right?
Yeah, first pitch bunt was on. I fouled it off and looked down and (A.J.) Pierzynski wiped it off and told me to get after it. Took a couple of bad swings first couple pitches after that. Then Santana left one over the plate. I got it.
You ever have a game like this, little league or anything?
I don't even care. I don't think so. This is the best one ever.
How do you hit three home runs in a game? What was the key? You just had a groove swing today?
Yeah. I got a couple pitches to hit and on some days you get those pitches, you miss them. I had my swing working today and I didn't miss those pitches.
As you rounded the base on the replay, on our vantage point, it seemed like you had realized you just hit your third home run. Is that what happened? How did it feel?
Yeah (laughing). I don't show too much emotion out there. But in that situation, when I saw the ball go over the fence, I let a little bit of adrenaline out and gave a little cheer. But it was a good feeling.