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May 27, 1999

The Week in Quotes

May 15-23

by Dennis Cleary

IT'S A HIT!

``They were all real slow knuckleballs that just happened to drift on me for whatever reason. They felt good coming out of my hand. It's just part of the game and part of the frustration for anybody throwing the knuckleball.''
-- Steve Sparks, Angels pitcher, on hitting four batters

``I was trying to establish the inside part of the plate. Maybe I should have established the fastball for a strike first.''

-- Ryan Dempster, Marlins pitcher, on hitting three batters

``I know it wasn't intentional. I know Jaret [Wright]. No hard feelings. You never try to hit anyone in the head. But that's not going to stop the ringing in my head.''

-- Tony Clark, Tigers infielder

AGUILERA TO THE CUBS

``There's some mixed emotions. My heart's kind of hurt, knowing I'm leaving. But on the other hand, I'm excited about what lies ahead. It was a tough day saying goodbye to my teammates and Tom Kelly.''
-- Rick Aguilera, Cubs pitcher

``We just didn't feel we could go forward without some experience in the bullpen.''

-- Jim Riggleman, Cubs manager

SCHILLING TALKS

``I don't think they're committed. I haven't seen any signs the last couple of years that ownership is willing to spend money to help us win ballgames.''
-- Curt Schilling, Phillies pitcher

``Every fifth day, Curt has the opportunity to go out and be a horse on the mound. Unfortunately, on the other four days, he tends to say things which are detrimental to the club and clearly self-serving.''

-- Ed Wade, Phillies GM

THE STRIKE ZONE

``The pitch on the outside corner is called less often than before. But the belt-high or above ball is called only occasionally. So that shrinks the strike zone from what it was last year.''
-- Dave Duncan, Cardinals pitching coach

``I'm sick of the umpires. If you give up four or five runs in the first inning something's wrong, but ... don't squeeze me. I'm tired of it.''

-- Jaime Navarro, White Sox pitcher

RETURNS

``I felt pretty good, a little rusty. I'm not used to walking two guys in one inning. I didn't have any problems with my arm, I threw all of my pitches and all them were good. I felt great.''
-- Jeff Brantley, Phillies pitcher

``It felt very good, no fatigue. I was very glad. I thought I'd be jumpy.''

-- Joe Torre, Yankees manager

``It's just a blessing to know that I'm starting to heal. That's the best I've felt since I got into camp.''

-- Tom Gordon, Red Sox pitcher

THE AL EAST

``We feel confident. No one's running away with it in this division, but you have to get to the .500 mark before you can make a run.''
-- Jose Canseco, Devil Rays DH

``We need to take advantage of the struggling Yankees like Boston is.''

-- Roy Halladay, Blue Jays pitcher

``There's a certain satisfaction to know you're on top, but yet you know there's a long way to go. We've just combined good pitching and good hitting, whereas before we just did one or the other.''

-- Mike Stanley, Red Sox infielder

``I'm not surprised the Red Sox are leading the division. They've been getting outstanding pitching and pesky hitting.''

-- Jim Fregosi, Blue Jays manager

THE REST

``All I know is it's a long season, a marathon, and I'm ready for that journey.''
-- Mark McGwire, Cardinals infielder

``I've just got to regroup, get it together, get it going again. There's still a lot of time left.''

-- Greg Maddux, Braves pitcher, on his 5.02 ERA

``We just need to try to hold our heads up high and do the best we can. That's all we can do.''

-- Cliff Floyd, Marlins outfielder

``My head is here, my heart is not. I played the game with integrity, played hard and played hurt.''

-- Jeff King, on his retirement

``I've had some good starts. I've just got some bad luck going my way right now. I've got to start producing my own good luck.''

-- Chris Holt, Astros pitcher, on being 0-6

``I think they made a mistake when they sent me down. I'm trying to show people what I can do. I'm trying to show everyone they made the wrong decision. I have something to prove to everybody.''

-- Jose Guillen, Pirates outfielder

``I'm nothing special offensively. All I can do to contribute offensively is get on base. I'm not going to drive in a lot of runs. Regardless of where I'm hitting, I try to be on base when the big guys come up.''

-- Walt Weiss, Braves infielder

``To be undefeated for that long, it's pretty special. You have to be good, you have to be lucky, you have to be consistent.''

-- Roger Clemens, Yankees pitcher, on winning his 18th straight decision

``There seems to be some kind of paranoia about me pitching more than one inning. I don't really agree with it. I'm trained and conditioned to pitch more than that. I pitched multiple innings for seven or eight years of my career.''

-- Jeff Montgomery, Royals pitcher

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