Oct. 29 Michael Cuddyer workout day interview
Q. First of all, hopefully you're having fun being down 2-0. You've been down two games to none in plenty of series. Do you think perhaps the media and the fans are getting too down? You see headlines like "Panic City". Anything to reassure the troops at this point?
MICHAEL CUDDYER: No doubt we're having fun. Obviously we would like to not be down 0-2, but we are. We're not going to give up, obviously. We're going to continue to battle. Teams have been down 0-2 before and come back. There is a precedent set for that. I believe the last time the Mets won the World Series they were down 0-2 and won, and those were two they lost at home. We get to come here now, where we've played well all year, in front of a fan base that is really excited. I think that's an understatement. Really excited to have us back out on the field, and we're really excited to get back out and play in front of them.
Q. You saw these Royals when they were a very bad team, and even some of these guys were on it when they were a bad team. What have you seen in their evolution, maybe individually and as a franchise over the last few years?
MICHAEL CUDDYER: Well, when I was in Minnesota, yeah, we'd seen them obviously a lot. And one thing that they did have as a characteristic of a team is they were always a tough, tough game. More times than not in Minnesota we won the game, but it was never an easy win. It was never, oh, we're going to go in and just easily sweep this series or anything like that. And I think that relentlessness has stuck with them. And I think you've seen that throughout their last two runs in the postseason. And obviously in the first two games they were able to battle, great at-bats, make big pitches when they had to make big pitches and just played good baseball. That characteristic they had, even in those down seasons a few years ago.
Q. Coming into this series everybody spoke about the Royals' ability to put the ball in play and how well they hit guys that threw 95-plus. At the same time, your pitching staff, you've seen this all year, no matter who is on the other side, they've been able to do special things. Has it surprised you at all just how much they've been able to live up to their billing against the guys that you're throwing?
MICHAEL CUDDYER: I think last night was, I mean, a credit to them and a little bit of a surprise. Only to have, I don't know, what was it three swing-and-misses against Jake the whole game, which obviously is uncharacteristic of a game that Jake pitches. And that's not to discredit anything Jake did. That's what their game plan was. You look at Game 1, and obviously up until the ninth inning, we were winning that game. So the narrative could be totally different. And that's in any series, that's in any World Series. When you've got two of the best teams in the game playing, games can teeter either way with one play. Obviously Gordon hitting the big home run was the one that teetered in their favor. But, yeah, they've put great at-bats together, and hopefully we can now game-plan at our ballpark and change that narrative.
Q. What would you do, like what's tonight like for you, is it family, is it hanging out with the guys? How do you decompress, what's your plan?
MICHAEL CUDDYER: My family -- my wife flew with us back from Kansas City. We got back to the apartment about 4:30. My wife gets on a plane at 10:00 in the morning to go pick up the kids and they're on the way back at about 7:45. I'm going to go pick them up at the airport and enjoy a little bit of family time before we go to bed, and then start back up tomorrow. It was a hectic day and a half.
Q. Talk about your faith in Noah pitching, in what is probably the biggest game of the year, and a kid that wasn't even on the roster until May.
MICHAEL CUDDYER: The maturity level that he's been able to go through, I don't want to say transformation, but the evolution that he's been able to go through from that first day in Wrigley Field for his debut, up to now has been extremely impressive. Especially for a 22-year-old, to be pitching in games of this magnitude and be able to handle it as well as he is. I think you see now a guy that trusts his stuff, obviously you should when you throw 98, 97, 100 miles an hour, but also the secondary and third pitches as well. He's not afraid to throw the curveball. He's not afraid to throw the changeup. Not afraid to throw those in fastball counts, which says a lot about a young flamethrower. We're really excited to see him on this stage and see him pitch tomorrow night, and very confident to have him out on the mound.
Q. All year you guys have gone through a litany of things, whether it be innings limits or Wilmer Flores traded and not traded. This is a moment like that. Do you as a veteran have to say to young players, it's not 0-2; it's all about Game 3 now? Is that a direct message that you've already done?
MICHAEL CUDDYER: Yeah, we talked about you have to win four games, no matter what. Doesn't matter the order you win them in, doesn't matter if it's four games in a row, back-to-back, doesn't matter. You have to win four games. And it starts with winning the first one. Hopefully for us tomorrow it's winning Game 1. The one thing about this team, no matter what point you look at in the course of the year, whenever we had the so called must-win situation, that everybody to put labels on games in May and June, whenever we had those games, we went out and we won those games. Whenever we were down 0-2 on a road series, and we really wanted to win that third game to salvage that series, we won that game. I think all of those series and all of those games hopefully prepared us for the moment that we're in right now. Obviously games are a much bigger magnitude. I don't want to downplay the magnitude of the World Series, but at the same time I think those games battle test you for this moment.