Oct. 7 Bob Melvin pregame interview
Q. Bob, how do you feel about this start time, 10 a.m. Pacific, how are your players feeling?
BOB MELVIN: Not much you can do about it. It's not ideal, but both teams have to play same conditions, same time, so really doesn't matter.
Q. Bob, your pitchers have been able to shutdown the Tigers lineup for two games. What are they doing so well?
BOB MELVIN: They're making good pitches, getting ahead of the count. Flip side of it is they're doing the same thing to us, so it's been pretty evenly matched, low scoring games. Pitching has ruled the day.
Both teams have good offenses and you would expect both to break out a little bit more, but that hasn't been the case to this point because all the starting pitchers to this point have been making good pitches, getting ahead and making it difficult on the hitters.
Q. Bob, with Brandon Moss strikeouts, they come with the territory and he's had a few obviously, but how important is it to stay with a guy like that?
BOB MELVIN: He's got 30 home runs during the season and it's not like he's the only guy striking out. We have quite a few guys strike out, so there is probably a few guys that we need to stay patient with, as we do. We have a lineup that we run out there against righties, for the most part, one against lefties. After a couple of games I don't see any reason really to change that, so we will stay with him. He has had a big affect on our team this year and we expect him to as well in this series.
Q. When you put together game plan for your pitchers, is there, in a series like this, a general rule that you use for all of them or is it individually tailored for the style of the pitcher?
BOB MELVIN: I think it's individually tailored, and the balance is whether or not you're attacking their weaknesses or going with the starter's strength, and it depends on the particular pitcher you have that day. But that's the balance.
Q. What do you view for Dan Straily?
BOB MELVIN: More with his strengths.
Q. What are they?
BOB MELVIN: Trying to get ahead, he's got a good slider and being able to get himself into a position to use the slider.
Q. You are talking about how pitching has ruled the day so far. How do you like stepping up into this match up here, two great pitchers again? How do you see today playing out?
BOB MELVIN: You never really know. The strengths of both these teams are starting pitching, and if they're performing well and making pitches, it's going to be difficult to score runs. But each game has its own personality and you try to be patient for a while to see what's transpiring over the first few innings and act accordingly later.
But it's got a chance again to be another pitching and defensive day.
Q. Can you give an update on where Griffin is and how his condition is?
BOB MELVIN: Yeah, he played a little catch the other day and feels pretty good. Probably not 100%. But I think he's going to play catch again today.
I'm not sure. I don't think it's off a mound yet, but has felt better than he has postgame his last three starts.
Q. Obviously jumping ahead, if you were able to move on, what would he have to do in a very short period to get back and would he pitch off a mound? How would he get ready?
BOB MELVIN: He would have to throw at least one full bullpen, whether or not we try to get him some hitters. I don't know if that's in the offing, but he would have to be comfortable and throw a pretty strenuous bullpen where he's using his pitches to see how his arm responds the next day.
Q. And it's his elbow?
BOB MELVIN: Yeah.
Q. Might there be a case of your batters trying too hard or is it a case of their pitchers just being strikeout pitchers for all the strikeouts? Is it a given considering them rather than you?
BOB MELVIN: No, I think you do tend to probably press a little bit the farther it goes along. If you haven't had a couple of hits or not getting good swings, maybe you try to do too much. But I think that's probably the case on both sides right now. That's just human nature.
A lot of times it takes one game, one good outing, one offensive performance, it gets contagious to get you feeling good as a group again. It just hasn't happened yet for the reasons I've spoke about.
Q. How much does the Tigers lineup change with Jhonny Peralta in there today?
BOB MELVIN: It changes some. It's not like when Dirks is in there. Donny Kelly swung the bat okay the other day. Jhonny Peralta is a guy that can hit the ball out of the ballpark. So you have to be a little more careful with where you make your pitches to him, whether or not he's rusty or not based on the activity, not really sure yet.
We have just seen one at bat, but he was a significant contributor to their lineup over the course of the season, and a guy that can hit the ball out of the ballpark. So I'm sure they feel like it makes it stronger.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you.
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