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July 26, 2004

The Week in Quotes

July 12-25

by Ryan Wilkins

THE BEATS GOES ON

"There was a lot of residual passion...I haven't been involved with it before, but I'm a part of it now."
--Alex Rodriguez, Yankees third baseman, after being smacked by Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek (USA Today)

"We got the feeling back last night...We had to get that swagger back that we had last year."
--Kevin Millar, Red Sox infielder, after Sunday's 9-6 win (San Francisco Chronicle)

"(Saturday) happened because we're competing. He's (Arroyo) not trying to hit him (A-Rod) right there...That's just @#$% ridiculous. You don't do that. We're down 3-0. A-Rod, I mean he got a hit the night before, but it's not like he's been killing us. Not that you hit him anyway."
--Curt Schilling, Red Sox starter (San Jose Mercury News)

"Nothing was premeditated...We didn't go over before batting practice to have someone say, '@#$% you.' This is all about the game."
--Schilling

"The intensity and level of intensity between these two teams-I've never seen it before...I've never been a part of anything like this. Either stadium you're in, it's loud every inning, every pitch, regardless of the score. We're playing some unbelievably tight games anyway. So, you get 40,000 people with every pitch and emotions run high."
--Schilling

"AND YOU KNEW WHERE YOU WERE THEN!/ GIRLS WERE GIRLS AND MEN WERE MEN!"

"Don't get me wrong, these guys today are as good as anybody...But how many of them ever come in with guys on base? Let's see if they'd get rattled when they face that first guy."
--Sparky Lyle, former relief pitcher (Chicago Tribune)

"Things get watered down now. We could've saved 55 games back then, too, if we were used the same way. We get overlooked [by voters] because of that."
--Lyle, on being ignored by the Hall of Fame

"I don't see today's relief pitchers getting respect [from Hall of Fame voters] until the save rule is respected by the writers."
--Fran Healy, former catcher and current Mets broadcaster (Chicago Tribune)

"The save rule has tarnished the statistics a little bit. Because of that, I think relief pitchers are dismissed."
--Healy

THE NEED FOR SPEED

"What respect does the old guy get? ...They should be comparing them to us, not us to them. The jury is still out on if these guys could do what we did. I don't think Eck resurrects his career if he had to do what we had to do. He was older when he became a reliever. I don't know if he could have handled the grind."
--Goose Gossage, former relief pitcher, on the "modern" closer (Rocky Mountain News)

"We had jams to get out of...Now they bring guys in with two- and three-run leads. We didn't pitch with three-run leads. We'd let other guys get some work in. I'd come in and have to get strikeouts. Why? Because I could. My strikeout totals weren't padded."
--Gossage

"I don't have to take a back seat to anybody...But when you hear about the greatest relievers ever, well, do what I did and then compare. Do what we used to do-Sutter and me and [Rollie] Fingers
--and then compare."
--Gossage (Chicago Tribune)

"I think people have forgotten what we did. Don't get me wrong. These guys are awesome with what they are doing...If I had been used like they are used, it's hard to tell what my stats would be. I might still be pitching."
--Gossage (Rocky Mountain News)

"Guys like (Boston general manager) Theo Epstein and (Oakland GM) Billy (Beane) and the guy in Toronto (Blue Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi), they are paper guys...They have never done it. They don't know what it takes to be on the mound in the ninth inning. Billy (played), but he was never a pitcher.
--Gossage

"I'd say the setup reliever has a tougher job than the closer now, because they have to get out of the jams, but there is a little thing about the psychological side of the last three outs. If you have a Gagne or Rivera or Hoffman behind you, that's a security blanket. When you are the closer, there's no net below."
--Gossage

PROBLEMS, REAL AND IMAGINED...

"The pitcher should bat in either league...The pitcher needs to work in both leagues. Pitchers are athletes, too."
--Shawn Estes, Rockies pitcher (Newsday)

"In baseball, anything can happen...The Florida Marlins last year were the perfect example."
--Estes

"There's no question we really do have a lot more parity than three or four years ago. This vote is a manifestation of that. It'll get better."
--Bud Selig, MLB commissioner (Newsday)

"It seems, to me, pretty obvious in most places this year."
--Donald Fehr, MLBPA Executive Director (Newsday)

I, QUESTEC

"It undermines what umpires are doing...They have a tough job. They do it very well. I don't think anybody needs technological checks and balances."
--Mike Young, Rangers shortstop, on QuesTec (Newsday)

"Everyone who steps onto the field is accountable somehow. And if QuesTec makes the umpires accountable and maybe corrects different problems and helps them out in areas they need help, then I think it's worthwhile."
--Gary Matthews Jr., Rangers outfielder and Young's teammate, on QuesTec (Newsday)

PIRATE QUOTES THAT DIDN'T REALLY FIT ANYWHERE ELSE

"What's he tired from? Think about it. He flew in Sunday, watched the home run derby on Monday. That couldn't have been too exhausting, could it? He played, what, four innings in the game and had Wednesday off. Go ask [Jason] Kendall if he's tired."
--Lloyd McClendon, Pirates manager, on shortstop Jack Wilson's complaints of exhaustion (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

"He's human, just like everybody else...But don't make those kinds of excuses [about exhaustion]."
--McClendon

"The ninth inning has ruined a lot of good men...That's why those guys get paid a lot of money. You never know if you can do it until you do it."
--Spin Williams, Pirates pitching coach, on Salomon Torres (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

THE REST

"I am not a pitching coach; I am not a pitching guru. But when you go 120 pitches in four, five, six innings, you are not going to last too long because you are going to wear out."
--Ozzie Guillen, White Sox manager, on starter Esteban Loaiza (Chicago Tribune)

"It doesn't hurt or nothing. Just a big gash...It's frustrating. You don't want to go on the DL for something stupid."
--Shane Spencer, Mets outfielder, on going on the DL after stepping on broken glass (San Francisco Chronicle)

"He's a big part of the team. We're going to miss him for a couple weeks...It's unfortunate, but crazy things happen."
--Art Howe, Mets manager, on Spencer (San Francisco Chronicle)

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