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10/15/08 8:13 PM ET

Hiroki Kuroda pregame interview

Pitcher hopes to pitch best game possible Friday night

In reaction to you having thrown close to Victorino, you got kind of treated like a hero here, and I was wondering if you found it a little bit -- if it was unexpected.

HIROKI KURODA: What happened in the last game is in the past already. I'd like to focus on the next game. So I apologize, I'd like to hold off on my comment on that and I'd like to focus on my next game.

Since you will be starting the next game if you win tonight, I'd like to hear your comment on how you feel about pitching the next game.

HIROKI KURODA: I hope to pitch the best game as possible. Nothing unusual. I always approach the game the same way and no matter what the situation is. So I'd like to simply pitch my best game.

You always make a comment that you approach the game the same way. Do you make any effort, if any, to maintain your feelings or your approach the same way in any kind of situation?

HIROKI KURODA: There might be a slight difference between regular season game and exhibition games or Spring Training games. But throughout the season I try to maintain the same energy towards the game. And I would like to, I hope to do the same throughout the season and that's what I've been doing so far.

So when I go on the mound, no matter who I face, I try to approach the game the same way.

You pitched in very important games so far. ut would you say that the next game that you're going to start will be the most important that you've thrown this season?

HIROKI KURODA: Everyone knows that the next game is going to be a very important one. Obviously it's a sudden death situation.

But throughout the season I pitched for more than 30 games. But for me and for the team as well, every game that I pitched was an important game. So I don't think there's going to be a change in that for the next game. So I think, like I said, my approach is going to be pretty much the same.

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What was the mood in the clubhouse after Game 4 among your teammates, and also do you think it was the right decision for Joe Torre to give you guys off yesterday?

HIROKI KURODA: Every time we lose a game, everyone's depressed and pretty much down. So that wasn't any different after the last game.

But today I came into the clubhouse and everyone is pretty happy, and there's nothing we could do. We have to win this game.

And as far as Torre's decision to give a day off to the players, I can't really comment on that.

What do you think has made you so successful in your first two playoff starts here?

HIROKI KURODA: If I knew the reason why I was really successful in those two games, I wouldn't have any problem pitching the next season or throughout my career.

But I always play hard, and I think the result of that became those two victories, and I'm really glad I was able to contribute to the team in that way.

Did you have a relaxing day off yesterday?

HIROKI KURODA: Yes, I was able to relax a lot.

If you win tonight, will you be traveling to Philadelphia tonight or tomorrow?

HIROKI KURODA: As of now I haven't been told anything, so I wouldn't know.

Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports.

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