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Oct. 8 Jhonny Peralta & Victor Martinez postgame interview

MLB.com

Q. Jhonny, are you at all surprised, given the fact that you were off for seven weeks that you've been able to hit with as much timing as you've shown here since you returned?

JHONNY PERALTA: I mean, I tried to be ready. I know in the Dominican Republic, I tried to practice over there and tried to be ready for the playoff. I talked to Dombrowski before and to see that he give me the opportunity to be here and he said yes. So I tried to be ready for that. He said he got to need me for offense, the situation that we are in right now.

Q. Jhonny, are you at all surprised, given the fact that you were off for seven weeks that you've been able to hit with as much timing as you've shown here since you returned?

JHONNY PERALTA: I mean, I tried to be ready. I know in the Dominican Republic, I tried to practice over there and tried to be ready for the playoff. I talked to Dombrowski before and to see that he give me the opportunity to be here and he said yes. So I tried to be ready for that. He said he got to need me for offense, the situation that we are in right now.

Q. Victor, the home run, how relieved were you when you saw the signal that it was a home run and not fan interference?

VICTOR MARTINEZ: Well, it definitely felt great. It was a run that we really, really needed. Huge run to come back and tie the game and keep us in the game. You know, they are a great team and we all know that. Late in the game that is always a big relief.

Q. Jhonny, how comfortable are you in left field?

JHONNY PERALTA: You know, I feel really good in left field. It's my second game in left field and I think I do really good. It's a different position, but I try to do my best right now.

Q. What was the feeling in the dugout and at the plate for you guys against Dan Straily after the first time around? It seemed like he was able to not only execute pitches, but get quick outs. Was there a feeling that the second time around you guys could get to him or did it take a hit like what Jhonny had to get things going?

VICTOR MARTINEZ: Definitely there's always a hope that you get a second time around because if you don't have that hope, just throw in the towel. But he was throwing the ball great. I think he was spotting his fastball and he was able to throw his off speed when he needed, and he was keeping everybody off balance. You know, we put that inning together and Jhonny came up big, and that's been him all season long for us. He's been great for us, swinging the bat good and I think he just showed it once again tonight.

Q. Victor, Oakland's pitching has been sensational, but has there been any sense that some of the guys in the batting order have been putting a little pressure on themselves because of Miguel's injury and the fact that it's reduced his offense?

VICTOR MARTINEZ: No, we don't think about it that way. We all know Miguel, by himself he won't win every game. We need everybody to step up, and like I always say, you have to give credit to those who deserve credit. They have been pitching great to us and we have just been able to get that big hit, and tonight we came to this game with our back against the wall and we came up big. I think we put some good at bats together and got pretty good results.

Q. Jhonny, how meaningful has this been to you to get this opportunity to play after the suspension.

JHONNY PERALTA: I feel, you know, really good that Dombrowski give me the opportunity here, and the fans, they feel really good for me. I tried to do my best for the team and for the fans here in Detroit, so I feel grateful for the opportunity.

Q. Jhonny, did the fans throw you back the home run ball when you went out to left field so you got it back?

JHONNY PERALTA: Yeah, some fans throw the ball and, you know, I keep it in the dugout. I keep it with me in the clubhouse, feels really good for that.

Q. You guys were able to get through and put up eight runs, made some contact with the ball. What does that do for the psyche of the team heading into Game 5?

VICTOR MARTINEZ: We just do it like we have been doing it all season long. We end up winning a pretty good ballgame and it's over, turn the page. We go to Oakland now and play another game. We all know it's a tough place to play, but like I say, we have been doing a great job all season long just turning the page and go to the next day and play a brand new ballgame and see what happens.

Q. Jhonny, when you accepted the suspension, was there any talk about whether you would be eligible for the postseason? Were you concerned about that? What did you do to make sure that you kept in sync and were ready to come back when you did?

JHONNY PERALTA: You know, I don't know nothing to the last couple days in Miami. Dombrowski called my agent and said try to be here and practice with the team and try to be ready for whatever situation. They need me in the postseason and I tried to keep practice every day and hitting in the batting cage, and now they give me the opportunity to be here and try to do my best.

Q. For Victor, how difficult is it when the team is struggling offensively to sometimes not swing at the first strike, but try to wait for the first good pitch to hit?

VICTOR MARTINEZ: Well, it's not fun, not fun when you don't put runs on the board. We have been struggling, but like I say, man, we just go out there and be a tough out and make sure that when we get our pitches, put a good swing in. I always say when you put in a good swing, anything can happen.

Q. Jhonny, you did the same thing when you hit the home run, you waited until you got a good fastball, right?

JHONNY PERALTA: Yeah, I mean, the home run, I hit it with two strikes, so the pitcher doing pretty good early in the game. And I think this year make good contact with two strikes. In that situation I was looking for the pitch to hit and this happened in that situation.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Detroit Tigers