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RIVALS



"We are going to start taking it to them a little more from now on. By no
means do we think they are a better team than we are."

Keith Foulke, White Sox pitcher, on the Minnesota Twins, against whom
the Sox had managed only one win in twelve meetings



"You feel that sometimes teams are still not taking us seriously.
Obviously, the White Sox are not taking us seriously. I’m not going to take
credit away from those guys and they shouldn’t be taking credit away from us. "

Torii Hunter, Twins outfielder



"I’ve got nothing negative to say about those guys even though they have
negative things to say about us. They have been waiting for us to fall on
our faces since April–and now it’s July. It seems they just want to have
something to talk about. Well, we’ll give them something to talk about."

–Hunter

GETTING IT ON



"We set the tone at the top of the order. If we get on base, we score runs."

Derek Jeter, Yankees infielder



"The key is getting the first guy on. You can do some things. The more men
on base, the pitchers have to throw strikes."

Gary Sheffield, Dodgers outfielder



"This involves more than just the Nos. 1 and 2 hitters. Everybody in the
lineup has to think about drawing more walks. Ray, Jose [Canseco], Carlos
Lee, Magglio, Paul Konerko, Herbert Perry, [Royce] Clayton, all of them.
This isn’t easy. Hitting is an aggressive, violent act. We’re trying to
walk the thin line between being aggressive and being patient."

Jerry Manuel, White Sox maanger

STRANGE THOUGHTS



"Fantastic. The difference in Eric Gagne tonight and what we were seeing
before he was sent down was a young man who was aggressive in the strike
zone and challenged people for six innings."

Jim Tracy, Dodgers manager, on an Eric Gagne six-inning,
six strikeout shutout between being called up from AAA and sent back down to AAA



"We tried, man, but when one team’s got your calling card, they’ve just got
your calling card, and they’re charging it up big-time. They’ve had mine
all year long. They’ve run my bill up so high, I can’t afford it."

Barry Bonds, Giants outfielder, on playing the Dodgers



"I went to bed thinking, ‘Stay focused,’ and I woke up thinking, ‘Stay
focused.’"

Gil Heredia, Athletics pitcher, on focus

LOSING



"Right now, an 8-year-old Little League team would probably be tough for us."

Darin Erstad, Angels outfielder, on his team’s recent woes



"When you don’t deliver results something has to change."

Buck Martinez, Blue Jays manager, hinting at a possible salary dump



"If one of our pitchers gives up a home run, we usually blame the pitcher."

Joe Torre, Yankees manager, on Orioles pitcher Jose Mercedes
accusations that the Yankees stole signs in their July 3 win



"The biggest problem, quite frankly, is trying to figure this team out."

Brian Sabean, Giants GM, asked to to identify the Giants’ most pressing need



"I almost think of him like a starter now–once every five days."

Mike Scioscia, Angels manager, on closer Troy Percival

THE REST



"A lot of people say, ‘Aw, chemistry is nothing.’ But it’s 100 percent of
winning. And this team has the most unbelievable chemistry."

Matt Stairs, Cubs infielder



"I didn’t expect to pitch tonight. But when you do go, you expect to pitch
well. But we all have human arms and sometimes you have to say, `I’m not
available.’"

Derek Lowe, Red Sox pitcher, on his workload and being used in
non-save situations



"In case of emergency, break glass and whip him out."

Brian Cashman, Yankees general manager, on infielder
Luis Sojo‘s role



"I don’t even think I’ve done it on PlayStation. That’s a first for me,
all the way around, all the way up."

Geoff Blum, Expos outfielder, on hitting a home run from both sides of
the plate in a game



"It’s a cheap hobby, and it keeps me from falling into the company of
frolicsome women."

George A. Thompson Jr., NYU librarian, on why he spends hours a week
looking at microfilm of 19th century newspapers for ancient references to
predecessors of baseball

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