Oct. 11 Mike Matheny postgame interview
Q. Mike, when you see Beltran do what he is doing, do you sometimes have visions of 2004 at all?
MIKE MATHENY: Yeah, that's a good comparison. I mean, we couldn't get the guy out, and one of the best postseason performances I've ever seen. But he's been a pro all season long, and just fun to watch him do his thing, whether it's offensively, the big throw he made or defensively. The guy is a player.
Q. I realize every game is important in a series, but the way the pitching was set‑up with Greinke, Kershaw, and you don't have Wainwright until Game 3, was today a little more significant maybe than a lot of Game 1s?
MIKE MATHENY: Now that it's over and we've won, we'll say it is. But going in you treat them all like it's going to be the most important one we'll ever play. I think the guys have really taken to that approach. But, obviously, we knew we were facing a very good pitcher, and we had a lot of faith that Joe was going to get the job done. He fought his way through it, and had a bunch of other guys step in and pitch some big innings for us as well.
Q. You got precisely what you needed from a whole series of pitchers. I wonder at what point you made the decision to keep Lynn back for that circumstance late in the game?
MIKE MATHENY: Well, just kind of keeping our eye in the game on where we might use him for a couple of innings. We like his stuff coming out of the pen. We also like it as a starter. But just as that point we've gone through our closer, and they've kind of pulled their lefties out of the lineup. We had Siegrist on the bench, and Lance in the pen, and Mujica, it was time to get Lance in and Shelby would have been right behind him.
Q. To follow that up, it seemed early on Shelby got up and you kind of had a few guys getting warmed up. What was sort of the thought process? Was Joe sort of teetering a little bit? What was your kind of viewpoint on where he was and how much more rope he was going to have at that point?
MIKE MATHENY: Yeah, in these games especially since we have extra arms available, we keep a pretty short leash if something doesn't look right. Joe, great compliment to him, what you always say about the good pitchers, are able to get it done when they don't have their best stuff, and Joe didn't have his best stuff tonight. He showed signs of it. When he would get on the corners, he was really good. But there were other times he was battling from behind the count and he had to get too much to the plate, and you can't do that to an offense like this. So Joe got into a better feel. He pitched out of a couple really tough jams, but overall he got the job done without being real, real sharp.
So we had some guys ready to go in case it started to snowball, but he was able to minimize the damage, and we had a lot of those young kids come in from the bullpen and do their thing.
Q. Was this game the one you were looking for from Carpenter to jump start the offense?
MIKE MATHENY: We're just trying not to put too much focus on Matt. We want him to just fall into place with everybody else and not put the weight of the world on his shoulders to get this offense going. That's not his job. He's going to go out there and put together tough at‑bats, which he did today.
But we've also seen some tough at‑bats here in the last series at the end, and not getting a lot of luck, and that tends to make a player try to push a little more.
I think so much has been said about him being a catalyst for our offense, that he started to really put that on his shoulders that he wanted to carry this team. And that's not the truth. We've got other guys that can do it as well. We just need him to be himself and be the guy that he's been all season.
Q. As far as Carlos Beltran's game goes, I'm curious just in general whether you're almost surprised when he doesn't come through in a key spot at this point? Just specifically his choice to call off the centerfielder to make a throw home in that key spot?
MIKE MATHENY: Yeah, it was a great play. Jon Jay did a great job of stepping aside too, and letting Carlos have that throw and Yadier finishing it off at the plate and doing a nice job staying in there.
But as far as our expectation, we expect all these guys to come through for us. We've seen them do it all season long. We've seen different guys step in, and it's not just on Carlos, it's not just going to be on Carlos or Matt Carpenter for the rest of the series. It's going to be on each guy stepping up and doing their part. They all have the ability to do it.
Q. What do you say about your ‑‑ you talked a little about your relievers. But I asked Don Mattingly as well, you held them to 1 for 10 with runners in scoring position. What's that do overall for not only your starters, but everybody in terms of holding the Dodgers without a lot of damage tonight?
MIKE MATHENY: Yeah, I think as you begin a long series, you just have some confidence. I believe that confidence and success breeds more confidence and success, and hopefully the guys will feel good about their chances of getting the job done, because we're going to throw them back in there. We trust them in big situations. The only way you can feel good about those is to be in them and have some success.
Once again, we're exposing some of these kids to things that they haven't been exposed to before, and they keep doing the job. So we just enjoy throwing them back out there.