Oct. 10 Joe Saunders and Chris Tillman pregame interview
Q. Just how weird is it that you're sitting there next to each other not knowing exactly who's going to be the starting pitcher tomorrow?
JOE SAUNDERS: We were kind of hoping you would tell us (laughter) because we don't know yet. Whoever it is, me or Chris, we're going to go out there and do our job.
CHRIS TILLMAN: Same. I feel confident either way. I think our team trusts us, and either way we go, I feel like we can get the job done.
Q. First of all, to Chris, you haven't pitched in the postseason yet, and watching the first couple of games, what have you learned? And to Joe, you've pitched in the postseason; can you talk about the difference in intensity between the regular season and the postseason?
CHRIS TILLMAN: Yeah, I haven't yet. I've been in the bullpen the last couple days watching these games. It's a lot of fun to watch. The intensity was huge, the fans were great. I think you've just got to treat it like another start. You can't put too much pressure on yourself. It's not fair to yourself, not fair to your team.
JOE SAUNDERS: Like Chris said, you have to approach it like it's just another game. If you try to do too much, put too much pressure on yourself, you're going to run into problems and things are going to snowball on you. For me, it's just a matter of what I've learned over I don't know how many starts I have, three, four, five starts maybe, and just keeping your nerves in check and trusting your stuff and going out there and doing your thing.
Q. One, is it kind of par for the course because this rotation all year you guys haven't really known when you've been pitching? And also, you guys have said before it doesn't matter who's pitching because you feel like it's the sum of the parts kind of rotation. Can you talk about you guys maybe not necessarily having an ace, but still being able to get the job done regardless of who has the ball?
JOE SAUNDERS: You know, I think it comes in believing in ourselves and believing that we don't truly have maybe a one, two, three, four, five kind of rotation. We have maybe a couple twos, maybe a couple threes, maybe a four, whatever. Like Buck says, whoever is pitching that day is the ace. Every day is the biggest game of the year, and then we move on to the next day and then that day is the biggest game of the year. That's how I've come to find out how they approach it and what their philosophy is.
Q. Joe, I'm just curious, what was your reaction when you heard that you'd been traded over to the Orioles? Were you surprised?
JOE SAUNDERS: You know, surprised, also excited. You know, I kind of had a clue in Arizona that I was going to be traded to somewhere, and then it was a little bit weird, didn't know where I remember K.T. saying you're traded but I can't tell you where, so I was like, well, can you give me a hint? He goes, well, it's really late there right now so we can't make any phone calls. I was like, all right, it's got to be an East Coast team at least. Found out the next morning that it was Baltimore, and number one, was excited to see all my family because I was from there, from that area, and then even more excited that Baltimore was in a race and had a good team and had a good chance to win.
Q. Obviously you guys have had trouble in Yankee Stadium, but this year you guys won all three of your series. What do you think has been the difference in playing here this year and how tough of a place is it to play overall?
CHRIS TILLMAN: I think our team this year is different than it has been in the past, being here the last three years and coming up through this year has been a whole different feel in the clubhouse and on the field. You come in the clubhouse after the game, you wouldn't be able to tell whether we won or lost. We've got a good thing going. We've just been playing good baseball. I think any given night it's a different guy that's a star that helps the team. It's never the same guys over and over again. Different guys pull through for us. It's exciting to watch.
Q. Chris, obviously Joe is a little bit of a later arriver, and you guys have won six of nine games here this year. Is the atmosphere here any different from any other big city, large market, full house that you guys have played in front of? Is it a special atmosphere at Yankee Stadium?
CHRIS TILLMAN: It is. It's fun playing here. They always have the fans here. They've always got the support. I think we all enjoy playing here, as well. It's one of the nicer stadiums we get to go to. But from a player standpoint, you get on the field, I think we focus on what we need to do and not buy into all that stuff.
As long as we can do that and not kind of pay attention to all the other stuff, I think we'll be fine.
Q. Chris, if you go tomorrow you'll be on a few extra days' rest. Is that positive, negative or indifferent to you right now?
CHRIS TILLMAN: You know, it has been a while, and all year it's been that way. I think it's been probably four or five times I've gone on five days' rest this whole season. It's not something I am not accustomed to. It's been something I've been doing all year. I'm comfortable with it. As long as I get my work in, keep my routine, I think I'm confident going out there.
Q. Jim Thome has played over 20 years in this league, and he's going to go to the Hall of Fame when he's done, but the one thing that's missing is that chip ring. What does it mean to watch a guy like that still go at it and still have that hunger?
JOE SAUNDERS: You know, just coming over here a month ago knowing Jim, great dude, real down to earth, and goes about his business the right way, still works hard. Every time I see the guy he's in the batting cage. It would be awesome if we could do this, and I think we have a good chance of doing it. I think everybody knows it would mean everything to him, and it would mean everything to us. If we could do that for him, help him get that ring for him and us, it would be pretty special.