10/09/2004 6:13 PM ET
Beltran postgame quotes
Oufielder comments on his first trip to the postseason
Q. This being your first postseason experience, can you talk about how you've dealt with the pressure and working off of the enthusiasm of the big crowds in this situation.
CARLOS BELTRAN: Well, first of all, you want to be in this situation where every game means something. Right now, I have the opportunity to play in the playoffs. This is my first experience and it's been great, you know, great opportunity being around so many great players in the clubhouse. Really has helped me to be a better player.
The pressure, every day you feel pressure. Every day you want to go out there and you want to try to do your job. But I'm not really thinking about, you know, about that. I'm thinking about just getting to the game, try to do my job, try to find a way to help the team win the ballgame and that's all.
Q. There was talk that the team has been in a virtual playoff atmosphere the last month of the season. Has that helped prepare you for the playoffs?
CARLOS BELTRAN: I think so. I think when we were playing hard baseball for these last 20 games of the season, and we've been battling to make the wildcard. We did it.
So we already feel like we lived this before. We have no pressure. Right now we're just going out there and doing the job, you know, as a team. Before we were trying too hard. Now we're just going out there and having fun. Everyone's having fun and we're being aggressive, we're playing different baseball than the one we played before.
Q. Can you talk about how the team has the ability to score, hit and score with two outs.
CARLOS BELTRAN: Well, when you have a situation like that, you just want to put the ball in play. We've been doing a good job with two outs. I think Morgan today did a great job. He hit the ball down the line. Just as a player, you want to be in a situation where you want to have a man in scoring position no matter how many outs, you just want to get the job done. We're doing a real good job.
Q. Do you miss Kansas City?
CARLOS BELTRAN: I got to be honest, I have a lot of friends over there, I have a lot of great guys. But it's just been great being here in Houston, being in this situation. God has given me the opportunity to experience playing in a different league, experience being in the playoffs, and as a player it's just a dream.
Q. How is your rib from being hit by the pitch? Did you think your home run was going to make it all the way?
CARLOS BELTRAN: Well, the ribs, I feel sore. Today is the day that I feel sorer than yesterday. It bothers me when I run. When I swing the bat from the left side, it doesn't bother me at all. But when I swing the bat from the right side, it bothers me a little bit.
But when I hit the ball today, I knew I hit it hard. I hit a little bit off the end of the bat. I knew it was going to be a close play. But I really thank God that ball went out and gave us two runs right there and gave us the momentum just to keep going and find a way to score runs.
Q. You appeared in the All-Star Game in an Astros uniform right after the trade. Now you're performing well in the postseason. Do you feel there's some destiny to you being here in Houston?
CARLOS BELTRAN: I believe that a lot. I believe God has a plan for you. He has this plan for me, just for me to be traded, play in a different league, come to Houston, be in the All-Star Game at the same time, you know, play in a different league.
All my career I play in the American League. As a player, in the situation where I am right now, next year I'll be a free agent, it was going to be difficult for me to consider a team from the National League because even if it's the same team, you feel like "oh, man, it's the National League." But now that I'm able to play in this league, I mean the American League, it will be easy for me to consider teams in the National League. And I really have to say that I feel happy here in Houston.
There's a lot of guys, as a player you really want to be around those guys. I really want to be around Clemens, Bagwell, Biggio. I have learned a lot from those guys and it's really helping me a lot.
Q. How did the team feel with Backe? He got in trouble in the fourth inning, in a tie game, but then he came back, and pitched well in the fifth and sixth and stopped them. Does that carry over into some offense for you?
CARLOS BELTRAN: Well, when Backe, he gave up those two runs, who knows, the other team can hit, can hit the ball good, too.
We were thinking, "Okay, we just got to go now and score a few more." We found a way to do it, and we did it. I think Backe did a great job. He's a warrior on the mound. He really cares about what he's doing. I love to see him on the mound pitching. He's a great pitcher. Since he joined the club, he has done a great job for us.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.