WITH JERRY JONES AND GEORGE W. BUSH BEHIND YOU, VICTORY IN ST. PETERSBURG IS INEVITABLE
"This is a different team than has ever played here. This is a different set of circumstances. We want to get a ring, period. The history of the team has zero bearing on what we're trying to do and where we're trying to go."
—Rangers starter Cliff Lee, on his ALDS Game Five start at Tampa Bay on Tuesday night as the Rangers try to win a post-season series for the first time in franchise history.
"There's a championship feeling in the air over there with the Rangers. It's an exciting time. It lifts all boats. You've heard me say a lot of times, I think we have the highest per capita interest in sports in this area than any place in the country."
—Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on the Rangers playing in the postseason.
"I don't think we gave them anything. I think the runs they put on the board were earned. I didn't see us booting balls around."
—Rangers manager Ron Washington on his team's performance in losing two home games to the Rays.
"I remember in '07 we traded Tex, that was a tough spot for me. I mean, just a long time teammate, a great player. And the next thing you know we started seeing the kids that we traded Tex for showed up in spring training, kind of showing what they got. And you start thinking, wow, when these kids grow up they are going to be pretty good. They grew up a lot quicker than we thought they would, and we had three or four spots filled up just from that trade."
—Rangers third baseman Michael Young on the haul Texas received for trading Mark Teixeira to the Braves.
OH YE OF LITTLE FAITH IN UMPIRES
"I'm going to tell you this. He should not have been on first. He should not have been on second. And he didn't touch third. So the Oscar goes to Chase Utley."
—Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips on a variety of questionable calls by the umpires in Game 2 of his team's NLDS with the Phillies.
"If Utley got hit with a 102 mile-an-hour ball, he’s a soldier for going to first base like that. He must be Iron Man III. If you hit me, I would have been on the D.L., crying."
—Phillips on Utley getting hit by an 0-2 pitch from Aroldis Chapman.
"Heck, in the World Series, I faked a catch, you know, a short hop. You’re going to do what you have to do. I don’t think it’s cheating, necessarily, like a lot of people want it to be. They want people to say, 'Yeah, I did it,' or, 'I didn’t do it.' It probably doesn't work like that. His chances of getting grazed and getting to first base might have been a better chance of actually getting a hit at the time. So you do what you have to do."
—Reds manager Dusty Baker on the phantom beanball.
"I guess it's a good thing we don't have instant replay right now."
—Giants catcher Buster Posey, on getting called safe at second base when he was clearly out then scoring the lone run in his team's NLDS Game One victory over the Braves.
"I just think it's all about getting it right. Umpires are human and they may not see a call that may dictate who wins the game. So why not get it right?"
—Giants manager Bruce Bochy on why he feels Major League Baseball should expand instant replay. (Mark Emmons, San Jose Mercury-News)
SIMILAR COMMENTS WERE RECORDED AT THE OK CORRAL
"I don't think we were affected at all by this crowd. We were affected by Doc Halladay. And Doc affected the crowd. That's how it went."
—Baker on Roy Halladay's Game 1 no-hitter. (Ray Parillo, Philadelphia Inquirer)
"I watched it at home and it was just awesome. The guy is a beast on the mound. Once it got to around the fifth inning and I realized he was throwing a no-hitter, I stopped talking because I didn't want to say anything that could ruin it."
—Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Stewart Bradley on Halladay's feat.
"The rule book says to score a base hit if extraordinary fielding is required to make the play. Even though (Carlos) Ruiz threw from his knees, catchers do that all the time. They're used to making plays like that, and it is an ordinary position for them. I have never had a no-hitter, and it’s certainly the most exciting game I have scored. It was a thrill to be a part of it."
—Phillies official scorer Mike Maconi on how he planned to score the last play of the no-hitter if Ruiz's throw to first hadn't recorded the final out.
"To right-handed hitters he'll throw a cutter, which starts at your right hip and catches the back corner, a sinker which catches the front portion, a back-door cutter which catches the corner and a slider on the corner. That's not even mentioning his curve or his splitter. He doesn’t throw a fastball."
—Reds first baseman Joey Votto on Halladay's arsenal. (Bob Elliott, Toronto Sun)
IT'S PROBABLY NOT A GOOD SIGN THAT LOSING ISN'T A SUFFICIENTLY DEPRESSING DESCRIPTION
"On the record-wise, yes, they've won nine in a row. That's not dominating us, other than wins and losses. The games are really close and could go either way. We come up with a big hit or big pitch they can turn the other way. We just haven't been able to do that."
—Twins manager Ron Gardenhire on losing in the ALDS to the Yankees in three straight games.
"We keep saying, 'Well, next year we'll get these guys.' That's happened a couple of times, and it hasn't worked out."
—Twins right fielder Jason Kubel.
"That's just such a non-issue. We all know that's a no-brainer. We are going to get something done."
—Twins owner Jim Pohlad on whether he plans to extend Gardenhire's contract beyond next season. (Joe Christensen, Minneapolis Star-Tribune)
BRAGGING ABOUT YOUR MISTAKES IS ONE WAY TO GO
"We have always gone over budget in the 30 years I have been here… I don’t remember one time in all of Omar (Minaya) or before Omar, where the baseball department has come to ownership and said, 'We’d like to do this, this or this,' and we turned them down and yet the perception out there is that we’re picking baseball players. We're not capable of picking baseball players."
—Mets owner Fred Wilpon.
"We don’t know what will happen, but if he leaves, it could be a big change. Ever since he took over, this has been Los Mets. He got a lot of Latin guys through free agency and trades, and people were really into it."
—Mets reliever Pedro Feliciano before Minaya, the general manager, was fired.
"We're as disappointed as our fans. It costs us more. But we're just as disappointed."
"We looked at a lot of video of their offense and came up with a really good game plan. We didn't deviate. As far as what we'll do [Monday] night, we'll make a few adjustments, but this probably isn't the place to tell everyone about it."
—Braves starter Derek Lowe, on his approach to Game 4 of the NLDS against the Giants. (Barry M. Bloom, MLB.com)
"It can happen. It ain’t going to happen, but it can happen."
—Phillies manager Charlie Manuel, on the prospect of a Reds' comeback before Sunday's decisive NLDS game in Cincinnati. (David Murphy, Philadelphia Inquirer)
"Right now I am just happy we won. I was so nervous hoping that we didn't get swept. We got so close, just to get out of that, it feels much better. I almost feel like — it feels like we're winning the series right now."
—Rays left fielder Carl Crawford after his team's Game 3 victory at Texas to stave off elimination. (Mark Gonzales, Chicago Tribune)
"To be honest with you, I wanted to go from the batter's box to the dugout and be with the guys and not run the bases. What a cool thing to do and what a cool way to win."
—Braves center fielder Rick Ankiel on his game-winning home run in the 11th inning of Game 2 in San Francisco. (Yahoo! Sports)
"When I'm called upon, I enjoy being the stopper. When the skipper asks me to come out, regardless of the situation, I feel like I should be able to get out of it. It's already past me. The game's over. I can't really focus on that."
—Giants closer Brian Wilson on his blown save in Game 2, before closing out Game 3. (Cash Kruth, MLB.com)
Alex Carnevale is a contributor to Baseball Prospectus.