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10/17/08 12:57 AM ET

A postgame interview with Daisuke Matsuzaka

Red Sox Game 5 starter talks about the comeback win

Where were you at the moment of the walk off, and what are your overall thoughts about your dramatic victory tonight?

DAISUKE MATSUZAKA: I was in the clubhouse, the reason being I was there throughout the seventh and eighth when we were getting those runs and I could see the momentum shifting towards us, and I was half expecting the result you saw. And I couldn't move from the one spot I was in. But the instant J.D. got the hit, I ran out to the bench.

I'm not usually the pitcher that leaves the game as the pitcher of record and doesn't have to face the loss. But this year I've had a lot of those instances, and we're a team that scores a lot of runs after the seventh, so I just kept my faith and watched the whole game.

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Number one, this team is in the same spot as last year, but a dramatic comeback in this situation, is this a traditional strength of the Red Sox? And secondly, could you comment a little bit on your own pitching today?

DAISUKE MATSUZAKA: Just like last year, we have our backs against the wall, and I've been in that situation. So I went into the game trying to do my best to shift the series in our favor, and I think all of my teammates felt the same way today.

I've only been here since last year, so I don't know if I can be the one to say that this is a traditional strength of the Red Sox, to win in these elimination situations. But we all felt we couldn't let it end here, and we all believed we could come back tonight.

As for my pitching, I realized it was important to keep my innings short, to try and put pressure on the other pitcher and on their lineup, as well. But from the very first inning, I was the one putting pressure on our team, and because of that, I feel very disappointed.

I allowed a few home runs today, and I've said throughout the season that home runs are something that are preventable, so I'm very disappointed that I made those mistakes today. I just have to say a word of thanks to the relievers that pitched behind me and the guys on the field.

In the fifth inning when you were taken off the mound, you received a big applause from the crowd here tonight, and how did you feel about that? And did you notice any difference in their lineup, in the Rays' lineup, compared to Game 1?

DAISUKE MATSUZAKA: Certainly I noticed the applause as I was coming off the mound, but if it was for me, I'm not sure what it was directed at. So I didn't feel like the applause was actually for me.

Like the first game, their lineup came out swinging well, and even when I was able to get ahead in the count, I couldn't finish them off.

My condition today was clearly better than it was in my previous start, but I felt that in my last start I was able to pitch a little bit more carefully and a little bit more cautiously, and I think because I felt better today, maybe I wasn't able to pitch as finely.

Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports.

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