Oct. 4 Postgame interview with Gomes and Lester
Q. John, can you talk about the key hit and setting the tone for the Red Sox after Lester's pitched well.
JONNY GOMES: Yeah, you know once the playoffs start, everything is a clean slate. No longer it's the best team, it's the hottest team. And we obviously know Tampa is coming in hot; coming in on a roll. So it took a couple of innings to break the ice, but once Petey got that hit up the middle, I think that took a lot of questions out. And then Ortiz's big hit, runner on third, less than two, just trying to elevate the ball; got that and scored both. And a little hustle play on second to take the lead.
Q. Were you reminded at all of Opening Day?
JONNY GOMES: Absolutely, yeah. Yeah, we were talking about that right when I got in the dugout. With that being said, you don't get 97 wins throughout 162 by waiting for the three run homer. We generate some runs any way possible. And that's just not my hustle from second. That hustle is definitely erased if Stephen Drew doesn't hustle to first. So it's double hustle and we were able to touch the plate and get a run on the board.
Q. Johnny Gomes, what was your view of Wil Myers' play out there? What do you think happened?
JONNY GOMES: I don't know what happened, but one thing I've always said with my playoff experience is you play 162 games, a lot of innings, a lot of pitches, a lot of runs. One thing you can guarantee in the playoffs is you're going to see something you haven't seen all year. And saw that right away.
Q. Jon, first thing, you just came out on fire. Was it pure adrenaline? Was it just focus? How can you describe that first inning? And since I have the microphone, can you also discuss your conversation with the umpire after the inning, in which you gave up the Rodriguez home run?
JON LESTER: Yeah, obviously getting to start Game 1 at Fenway Park is pretty exciting. The adrenaline was going. Our game plan early on was to set the tone, come right after the guys. It felt pretty good. And obviously the velocity up there showed. So just tried to carry that over.
As far as the conversation with Chris, I thought it was a pretty good pitch. I asked him, you know, did he have it down or did it come did it miss in or where he had it. And he just said it was borderline down. And he had it down. So nothing you can do after that.
Q. You seem even more fastball and cutter heavy than usual. Do you think that set you up for the rest of the game? And was that intentional or was that more sort of a feel thing as you got out there and found it was working?
JON LESTER: I think it was more of a feel thing, you know. I felt like I had a good cutter early on. Lost it a little in the middle innings, and then found it towards the end. These guys obviously know me. I've faced them plenty of times and they know what we're trying to do. And you just have to try to execute down the zone and we did that.
Q. Johnny Gomes, this team has scored five or more in an inning more than any team in baseball. Is there a blood in the water aspect of this club?
JONNY GOMES: Absolutely. I think that just says how you see nine hitters, and we all work together. The inning, we scored, right before me, Napoli didn't get it done, but I think he saw seven or eight pitches. With that being said, I don't know if he tired out Matt or what, but from the on deck circle I was able to see eight pitches and it allowed me to jump on the first two. Guys that don't drive in runs or don't get the big hits, but I tell you what, we definitely work one through nine. We don't sit back and wait for the three run homer.
You know, with that being said, we continue to apply pressure, like you saw with the baserunning today. We saw the bags, but even going first and third, scoring from first, just, you know, true all around athletes throughout our lineup, as well.
Q. It's been about four years since you've pitched a playoff game. How have you matured or changed as a pitcher since then?
JON LESTER: I think just being involved in more playoff games at a younger age. You, through experience, learn how to handle these situations. And a perfect example is today. I knew two runs wasn't going to beat us. As long as I kept them close enough, our guys were going to figure out Matt, and we were able to do that. Get him out of the game early and get to their bullpen and put some runs up for us.
Q. Being up 1 0 is nice, but how important is tomorrow? And can you talk about Lackey in trying to go 2 0 in Boston?
JONNY GOMES: Yeah, this is a five game series. The next will be seven. But you've truly got to play like your back is against the wall every single game. We talked about earlier with momentum in the playoffs, and that pretty much is what wins game is momentum. We can't take our foot off the gas pedal and keep it going. Obviously Jon Lester did a heck of a job today, and he's going to pass the ball off to the other John, and we're happy about that.
JON LESTER: Yeah, what Jonny said here. We've got a lot of Johns going right now. What we talked about yesterday, setting the tone. Lack is going to come out and do that tomorrow, especially in a short series like this. Like Jonny said, every game is do or die. And for us to be at home it's even more important.
So hopefully John can go out there and give us another good start. And when it's said and done, hopefully we'll go to Tampa up 2 0.
Q. Jon Lester, you knew you were going to start this game for a while. Is that beneficial or do you overthink it? Obviously you didn't overthink it, but in preparation for it, was it tough because you had that much time?
JON LESTER: No, I don't think so. I think the last start was harder to prepare for than this one, just with the days off and the travel. You know it's your last start of the year, and you know it's a tune up for the postseason. And you're trying to compete. And obviously do well during the game. But with other things on your mind when you're out there pitching.
So this one, prepared for just the same way as I did a normal start during the season. Once Baltimore was over, you start thinking about the next one and preparing and going with scouting reports and figuring out what our game plan is going to be. When that fifth day comes, you go out and toe it up and see what you can get done.
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