10/23/08 8:32 PM ET
Ryan Madson pregame interview
Pitcher speaks about his worth in a well-stocked bullpen
By / MLB.com
People talk about you're throwing harder than you did in the past. How much harder?
RYAN MADSON: I think during the season I topped out at 95. I think in LA I hit 99 once. I think it's just a combination of things. A combination of rest, adrenaline, the way I was used all year long; more of a one-inning guy, where in the past I've been two innings or one plus. And just a combination of all that.
A lot has been made of Tropicana Field and home field advantage. I know this is looking forward, but what do you expect the crowd to be like in Philly? And what's your favorite part of playing there besides the fans?
RYAN MADSON: Yeah, the crowd in Philly, even on the day we clinched was probably the loudest I've heard them, pitching. And so they were unbelievable. And they've gotten better every playoff game.
As far as playing in Philly, besides the fans it's just a unique field. It's a beautiful field. It's a beautiful city, actually. Once you get to know it, once you go around and experience some of the food and places to go see and museums and stuff like that, it's a great city and I've fallen in love with it.
Do you think you're a tougher team at home?
RYAN MADSON: I don't know. We play well on the road. It seems like -- I don't know what the record is -- our record is on the road, but I know we always seem to go in on the road and play well, because we're relaxed. But we don't have our fans on top of us. But we kind of go out relaxed and just play our game. So we enjoy playing on the road.
You seem stronger every year. Are you throwing harder than you've ever thrown? Or is it just this year?
RYAN MADSON: You know, that's what the radar gun says. I'm not doing anything different. I'm not trying any harder. I think it's just, like I said, the combination of things. I'm not doing anything different, just adrenaline and rest and all that combined.
The number of home runs hit in Citizens Bank Park has steadily gone down the last few years. Do you think it's become more of a fair park compared to how it first played when it was really kind of a band box?
RYAN MADSON: They did move the wall back. I don't know how many home runs that took away. I think we're getting in pitchers that are more ground-ball guys. I think the guys that are standing around know how to pitch there and aren't afraid to pitch there.
So it's not a factor in our eyes, we just go out and make the pitches. We're not thinking about it. So I think it's just over time we've developed a pitching staff that can deal with it.
You've been tried as a starter, as a long reliever, you mentioned a one-out guy. Now you're the eighth-inning guy, it's pretty clear. Are you happy with this? Is this the way you envision your career going forward?
RYAN MADSON: Yeah. To start with I've had the opportunity to pitch in the eighth inning a couple of times in my career, and it's been taken away from me a couple of times as well. I'm not taking anything for granted. I've got to go out and do the job, because there's always somebody right there to take it. But it does feel good to be the guy when the phone rings in the eighth and it's going to be me. I can relax a little bit in the sixth, seventh. So it does feel good.
That's what everybody out there in the bullpen is out there for. We all want a significant role to play. It's just you feel a little more worth, worth your weight out there.
When you're facing a club that hasn't seen you, do you feel that advantage erodes when the series goes on?
RYAN MADSON: I have to agree with that. This day and age they have video and they can watch all my games probably all year long. But it's different when they're up there hitting against you, and the actual experience. I think pitchers do have an advantage in the start. That goes with anything as a starter or anybody. The more a hitter can see the pitcher's stuff, the more they can adjust to it. And so that's when a good pitcher will adjust back to them.
It seems like you guys are much better equipped to win the 3-1 games like last night and the 2-1 games. Do you attribute that to the bullpen or are other factors involved?
RYAN MADSON: Also our defense I attribute that to. In the bullpen we're not scared, we just want the lead or a tie. We know our guys are going to score runs late in the game, they have all year long. So if we can just hold them where it's at, they'll eventually score some runs for us.
When you guys are getting on Jamie Moyer about his age, what old ballplayers do you bring up and say how did you face this guy?
RYAN MADSON: I've never mentioned anything to him about his age. I learned the hard way. I think I made a comment to Tim Worrell and Rheal Cormier a couple years ago. I made a comment to them, and I didn't have any clothes left in my locker. So I don't say anything about his age.
He deserves to be here more than anybody, because he works so hard. And to me he doesn't feel old to me. He's just a more experienced guy. And I don't really talk to him about it, about his age much.
Did you have to develop a thick skin pitching for these years in Philadelphia. When the ups and downs come, and how did you deal with them?
RYAN MADSON: Oh, yeah, definitely. But, you know, to me I like it. I like that they show that they care. They show that they want you to go out there and get it done. I think that's better than fans showing up and not caring or not showing up at all. So to me I take it for my advantage and to go out there and want to do the job for them.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.