10/06/2012 4:17 PM ET
Oct. 6 CC Sabathia interview
Q.You did not fare very well against the Orioles this year. What can you tell us about those starts and what do you think you need to do differently in this start to have success?
CC SABATHIA:Just with me it's just command, starting with fastball command. They have a great lineup, and I've faced these guys a lot, and they know what I am trying to do. It's just up to me to go out and execute pitches, and you know, make sure I keep the ball down and get the ball in where I need to and go out and make pitches.
Q.What do you like about pitching this time of year?
CC SABATHIA:This is what you play for, you know, as a kid, trying to win a championship and being able to be in the postseason with the Yankees means a lot to me, and this organization is unbelievable. All the World Series championships and all the guys we have in the clubhouse that have been there I think helps you out, takes the pressure off, and you can just go out and do your part and have a good chance to win.
Q.You had a lot of success against this team a couple of years ago. How have they gotten better from what you've seen? Why are they here?
CC SABATHIA:Why are they here? I mean, it's a good team. Adam Jones has gotten a lot better, obviously; Mark Reynolds has gotten adjusted to the American League and is swinging the bat well. Wieters has gotten better over the years, so they've just gotten a bunch of talented guys that have gotten a lot better and they've made it tough on me. Hopefully tomorrow night, like I said, I can go out and command the baseball like I want to and make pitches and be successful.
Q.Mark Reynolds against you guys, what do you have to do against him?
CC SABATHIA:I think just keep him off balance, try to change speeds on him, keep the ball down. Like you said, he's been great against us. We've made a lot of mistakes and he's made us pay. Just try to change speeds, move the ball around and hopefully get some groundballs and some bad swings.
Q.With the familiarity that you have with their lineup and they obviously with you on the hill, in terms of advantage, do you think it tips towards the hitter or to the pitcher?
CC SABATHIA:I think it's probably right in the middle. These guys have seen me a lot, and I know what they're trying to do. Like I said, it's just up to me to go out and execute pitches and make pitches. I've faced a lot of these guys in the lineup the past couple years a bunch. We'll see who has the advantage tomorrow night. I'd say it's pretty even.
Q.Last year against Detroit in the playoffs, you did not pitch up to what your expectations were. Did you take that hard? Is that something you thought about in the offseason at all or coming into this year, or is that something you'll think about going into tomorrow night?
CC SABATHIA:It's something I definitely won't think about going into tomorrow night. But it being my last couple of starts going into the offseason, of course, yeah, that's something that you think about. But it's been a whole year, I've pitched a whole season since then. I've got more things to worry about than how I pitched against Detroit last year. I don't take that into tomorrow night, I take the last three or four starts, five starts that I've had, and just try to build off that.
Q.When you were with Milwaukee and went to the postseason, they were the upstart danger team of that postseason. Do you see the Orioles in that regard this year? Are they a danger because of them being here for the first time and their hunger?
CC SABATHIA:Yeah, I think so. I think I look at this team as the 2007 Indians team I was on, where it was a bunch of guys who had played together for a long time and had a great year, had some success, and were definitely dangerous in the playoffs. You know, I know what it's like to be on that side and have everything going right and the ball guys are playing well, and it's just rolling for you. Hopefully we can stop some of that tomorrow night.
Q.Obviously the results in your last three starts were better. Did you feel your stuff was much better, and how so?
CC SABATHIA:I just felt like my command was a lot better. I don't think I had that much change in my velocity. It was just being able to command the ball in is huge for me. During the season it was pretty good, but I just think I've been throwing strikes, and that's just been the biggest thing for me, just consistently going out there and keeping my delivery and throwing strikes.
Q.A couple guys were saying the other night that after having the success in '09 and winning the World Series, the last two years have been really disappointing and it makes them a little hungry to get back here. Are you maybe looking forward to this postseason more than the last couple just trying to get back there again?
CC SABATHIA:Of course. Coming here the first year, winning the World Series, then losing the ALCS and then last year losing in the first round definitely makes you want to get back and work hard and try to get back to the World Series and win it again. But this is the first step. It has been a little disappointing the past couple years. Hopefully we can turn it around.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.