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October 4, 2010

The Week in Quotes

September 27-October 3

by Alex Carnevale

CASH WOULD GIVE JESUS MONTERO FOR DEREK LOWE AT THIS POINT

"I'm happy because we won. I wish I'd thrown seven innings, 90 pitches, absolutely dealt and put the ball right where I wanted to. I didn't, it is what it is. I'm ready to go and just try to help us in the playoffs now."
—Yankees left-hander Andy Pettitte, on his final regular season start.

"I’m sure a lot of people are curious. I broke every record in the wrong direction for the Yankees this year. It ain’t like we got a Cy Young on the mound. Then again, I can go out there and throw a no-hitter at any time. I have that in the back of my head too."
—Yankees starter A.J. Burnett.

"Not a good year for me personally but hopefully as a team we’ll have a better year."
—Yankees starter Javier Vazquez.

"You ever watch 'The Brady Bunch' and they had that phony football playbook? If you're advance scouting us here in September, I think we're holding back all our big plays. We're saving hopefully our best for October, and we've played possum here in September." —Yankees general manager Brian Cashman (Ben Shpigel, The New York Times)

NEVER FEAR: DUSTY'S WELL IN CONTROL

"It's going to be in a hostile environment, probably Philly. I'm going to have to be on my A game to beat those guys. I think if you ask anyone we'd rather face anyone but Philly. But whoever comes along we've got to beat them."
—Reds starter Bronson Arroyo on his team facing the Phillies in the NLDS.

"This team, like the 1990 team, gets along well with each other. This is the sport that demands you have some level of chemistry."
—Reds broadcaster Marty Brennaman.

"Get him in a game, he'll be prepared to start the next time if there is a next time. It's a different atmosphere. It's a different noise level. It's a different intensity. It's a different everything. This will be more electricity and intensity and cheering and jeering and spitting than anything they've experienced in their lives."
—Reds manager Dusty Baker on why he won't start rookie left-hander Travis Wood against the Phillies.

"He's softer. You don't want to put two similar guys back to back."
Baker on placing Arroyo in the rotation. (Joe Kay, Associated Press)

THE TAXPAYERS ARE ALWAYS LETTING HIM DOWN

"For us to play 155 games and go a full season of playing really good baseball, it's kind of like, what else do we have to do to draw fans into this place? It's actually embarrassing for us."
—Rays third baseman Evan Longoria on the dismal attendance figures for the Rays' AL East championship season.

"It was something we had discussed but I don't think we would have. And it's not about the two players, it's about the sentiment expressed by the team throughout the year, the energy that they get from the fans when this place is full."
—Rays president Matthew Silverman on papering Tropicana Field to fill the ballpark.

"It's a Monday, a school night, a bad economy. It's Game 156 in a long season. People are excited about the playoffs, where tickets are more expensive. So they're probably saving their money."
—St. Petersburg mayor Bill Foster. (Kameel Stanley, St. Petersburg Times)

HOW DARE YOU INTERRUPT THE ARTIST AT HIS CANVAS

"I certainly believe in the people we have in place, and what will occur this winter is just a continuation of what already occurred during the season, which is to review the system we have in place."
—Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein.

In a year that ends like this, sometimes there’s a tendency to look at all the issues and all the problems, and you think that you’re nowhere close to a championship team. Certainly there are elements to a team that are close to championship-caliber."
Epstein.

"To be top-of-the-rotation type guys and pitch up to previous levels. Those are still my expectations for those guys going forward."
Epstein on Josh Beckett and John Lackey.

"We have to completely fix the bullpen. We do have a lot of important position players eligible for free agency. We’re going to have to keep those guys or replace them, or some combination thereof. You can’t let the way things happened this year cloud your judgment about what you have."
Epstein. (Peter Abraham, Boston Globe)

THEY'RE JUST THREE ACE-LEVEL NO. 1 STARTERS AWAY

"It starts with the starting rotation. Once we get that fixed right away, I think we'll get that much closer. They have three stud front-of-the-rotation pitchers, and we can't say that at this point."
—Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo on the Phillies.

"I think it's obtainable either way. Free agency is obviously the easier option. All it costs you is money. And trade opportunities come in lieu of players that are probably going to help you on the big-league level, too. But I think both ways, they're obtainable and I think we're going to explore every avenue to get that. I certainly think we have depth, prospect-wise, now in our minor-league system to pull off a deal for a pitcher."
Rizzo.

"I think as we've been saying for a while now, starting pitching is our biggest need. We need a guy to head the rotation, a front-of-the-rotation guy to put everybody in what we feel is their proper place in the rotation. That's the No. 1 priority going into the offseason."
Rizzo. (Bill Ladson, MLB.com)

THE REST

"Yeah, I want that guy. He wants to play for us, not only this year, but two years ago he told me he wants to play at Wrigley Field badly, after he was traded to Arizona from Cincinnati. When you see a guy that wants to play for an organization and give everything he has to that organization, it says a lot. Let's see what happens. I want to see him next year here, but if we can't sign him, there are other guys on the free agency market we can sign to protect (Aramis) Ramirez and Marlon (Byrd). We need that extra bat in the lineup next year."
—Cubs starter Carlos Zambrano on possibly adding Adam Dunn as a free agent. (Paul Sullivan, Chicago Tribune)

"It wasn't easy. It's a guy's career. It makes absolutely no sense to go any further than we did. Because that's a brilliant career, a brilliant pitcher, a brilliant man. We had to pull the plug."
—Rockies manager Jim Tracy, on lifting Ubaldo Jimenez after eight innings of a tie as the right-hander tried to earn his 20th win.(Jim Armstrong, Denver Post)

"He's a great guy. He knows baseball. In 2003 he came to my house and helped me sign my paperwork and had a lot of visits with me when I was in high school. He's the reason that I'm here today. It's real disappointing."
—Angels infielder Brandon Wood on the firing of Angels scout Jeff Scholzen along with scouting director Eddie Bane and two other scouts. (Evan Drellich, MLB.com)

"I told you he's a very talented guy. It takes a guy with less talent maybe 15 or 20 at-bats. It only took Ham three last nights, and his third tonight, to get locked in."
—Rangers manager Ron Washington on the return of Josh Hamilton to the lineup. (Fort-Worth Star Telegram)

"I've told Coke I'm 99.9 percent sure of it. But I'm not going to discuss it any more than that. If I change my mind, I don't want him to think I lied to him. But I don't think that's going to happen."
—Tigers manager Jim Leyland on moving Phil Coke to the rotation in 2011. (Tom Gage, Detroit News)

"I wish I could swing every time 3-0. There I was just trying to hit a home run. When they do, I like it - it's the only time you know what you're going to get."
—A's outfielder Jack Cust on being allowed to swing 3-0 and hitting his first home run on that count. (Susan Slusser, San Francisco Chronicle)

"I really appreciate him thinking about my career and stats. Same thing last year."
—Indians outfielder Shin-Soo Choo on manager Manny Acta sitting him on the final Sunday to preserve a .300 BA and .400 OBP. (Anthony Castrovince, MLB.com)

"Changing speeds with every pitch has been a key. Anything you can do to keep the hitters off-balance is good. When you throw 91, you have to figure out ways to get people out."
—Angels starter Jered Weaver on winning the MLB strikeout title. (Mike DioGiovanna, Los Angeles Times)

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Alex Carnevale is a contributor to Baseball Prospectus.

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