10/08/06 3:45 PM ET
Tony La Russa postgame interview
Manager talks about loss to Padres in Game 3 of NLDS
By / MLB.com
TONY LA RUSSA: He competed as hard as he could. Tough lineup for him, but he worked really hard. We had a great defensive inning the first inning, and they had one mark. I thought we pitched and defended as hard as we could. But you just gotta take your hats off to the way they pitched against us.
Tony, the play by Yadier [Molina] in the first inning to throw out the runner at first?
TONY LA RUSSA: Defensive first inning is a thing of beauty. Fired us up. But just couldn't break through. They pitched very well against us.
Tony, at this point will you for sure be going with Chris Carpenter now tomorrow?
TONY LA RUSSA: Yes.
You talk about your bullpen, Tony, keeping it a tight game, going in late, giving yourselves a chance?
TONY LA RUSSA: They had several chances, including a runner on third with less than two outs, and Supp bit it -- all the relievers. It's a big plus in the game. I mean we really kept pitching and defending, but just had a hard time breaking through.
Tony, what was Chris Young doing out there that made him so difficult to hit today?
TONY LA RUSSA: What he's been doing all year. He's deceptive. He works all parts of the zone.
He'll throw any pitch any time. It's really quality pitching -- really tough for guys to get on him.
Tony, obviously with Carpenter going tomorrow, you got the guy when you're in a big game like that that you want out there.
TONY LA RUSSA: Well, I mean, I think Chris is as good as anybody in baseball. So we always think we have a chance, a good chance. I'm not sure who they're going to pitch. But you take care of your own business first.
And with Chris, we're going to give it a best shot. It's a game we hoped not to have to play, but you try to wrap it up as soon as you can. They've got to win. They're a tough club. We beat them 2 0 the other day. All the games have been there for both of us. So I think very even series, and we'll give it another chance tomorrow.
With the past five, six weeks here what he did today, has it been different from what you've seen from what he's struggled with since like September, or is today just a whole other ballgame?
TONY LA RUSSA: What about the other guys? We had two other guys get most of the hits. It's tough. I know there's a question about how he feels. He says feels fine; he's taking a ton of extra hitting. It's an indication that he feels strong and fine. He's working to get his stroke right.
In light of Chris Duncan's few missed in left field -- you'll be starting a right hander tomorrow -- are you still going to have him in the lineup?
TONY LA RUSSA: This happened earlier in the year, and the last inning we played -- the eighth -- the ball was lost by the shortstop. He came in and caught it. He had the toughest balls you can have in daylight when there's errors and reflections. He had line drives that, I mean, he didn't ever have an easy play. But you saw he came fighting, just like he did last time. The last time we played him the next day he made a catch over his shoulder that saved the game. So I don't know who he's going to pitch, so we'll see. If there's a change, it will not be because concern about Chris's defense.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.