10/11/07 4:23 PM ET
Workout day interview with Josh Beckett
Pitcher says everyone is locked in this time of year
By / MLB.com
JOSH BECKETT: It doesn't. I go out and do what I've been doing. You know, our hitters got to worry about C.C. Sabathia, not me. I've just got to get their guys out.
Can you just talk about playing for Tito the last couple years and what you enjoy about it and what you kind of think his strengths are as a manager?
JOSH BECKETT: He has a lot of strengths. You know, he kind of just -- I mean, obviously he manages when he needs to manage, but when he doesn't need to manage, he doesn't try to overthink things, and just let's us go out there and let our abilities take over and lets us play.
You know, for me this year has kind of been about gaining his trust, and in those situations where sometimes maybe he would take some guys out, he's left me in there, and that's a big thing to have from a manager.
Would you describe how you've managed your time since you last pitched? Obviously it's not a regular schedule.
JOSH BECKETT: I've done the same thing I've done all year. You know, I was preparing for Monday, if we needed it, and fortunately we didn't end up needing a Game 4 in that series.
But just I've done the same thing that I've been doing.
Is there anything you could take out of that 1-0 game in July in Cleveland?
JOSH BECKETT: No, I mean, they've got a lot of guys there swinging the bats a little bit differently than they were then. They've got a couple new guys, so you've just got to go at it as a new game.
Do you ever find yourself watching the game and watching the other pitcher facing Ortiz or Ramirez and wonder what that pitcher is thinking and maybe what you'd be doing against them?
JOSH BECKETT: I'll tell you, it would be tough right now, the way those guys are hitting, swinging the bat, J.D. and Mike Lowell are swinging the bat really good, too. So it's not like you can just walk those two guys and breeze through the rest of the lineup. That's how a lot of teams this time of year are. To get this deep into the playoffs you have to have contributions from everybody.
The other day Tito described you as an emotional guy. Do you think that's true when you're out there? And do you think that's something that's changed over the years with you as a pitcher?
JOSH BECKETT: I don't know, I'm not into self proclaimed nicknames or any. If he says it, yeah, I guess I agree with it. He's my manager; he tells me what to think.
Have I had to channel it? Yeah, I definitely think that you learn how to deal with certain parts of your personality over time. Your whole life you're kind of learning who you're going to be and what's going to drive you, and that's kind of where I'm getting to.
When you look at that Indians' lineup, is there one name that you key on that makes that lineup go?
JOSH BECKETT: You've got to start at the top with Grady. He's the one that gets everything going. Obviously they've got their thumpers in the middle. Like I said, during this time of year not many teams don't have that. I think it starts with keeping guys like Grady off base and just pitching to your strengths and exploiting weaknesses.
You kind of alluded to this already, but the Sox took the season series 5-2, but is this the same team you guys faced in the summer coming into the series in October? And if so, how have they changed?
JOSH BECKETT: It's October. Everybody is locked in this time of year. Ain't nobody out there just flailing away. People don't slip through the cracks in October, especially not Oct. 11th and 12th. You don't slip through the cracks. Managers don't allow that, GM's don't allow that, ownerships don't allow that. People might get a chance to play the following day if they struggle during the season, but during the playoffs that doesn't happen.
How much of a benefit is the playoff experience that the Red Sox pitching staff has?
JOSH BECKETT: I don't know. I mean, I didn't have any in '03 and I did pretty good. I don't know. I think being there, it can be accounted for, but I don't think it's huge by any means.
You said that teams are locked in, especially Oct. 11th or 12th. Does that mean that it's more difficult to throw a shutout like you've done in the postseason as opposed to the regular season?
JOSH BECKETT: Probably not. You know, it's one of those deals. You know, it's easy on days when you've got everything working for you. It's those days that you don't have everything going are the days you've got to grind it out and hope you score a couple more runs than they do.
The other day was just one of those starts that I had everything going, and everything worked out in my favor.
How do you think you've changed since '03 when you were in the World Series, both as a pitcher and mentally preparing for it?
JOSH BECKETT: I really don't know. I don't know. I can't even -- I don't even know where to start with that one.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.