Orioles manager Buck Showalter talks to the media before Game 1

October 07, 2012|By Eduardo A. Encina | The Baltimore Sun

Orioles manager Buck Showalter spoke to the media before tonight American League Division Series Game 1 at Camden Yards, the first postseason game in Baltimore since 1997.

Here's a full transcript of Showalter's pregame news conference:

Would you start by giving the lineup today?

BUCK SHOWALTER:  Let's say, we've got McLouth leading off, Hardy, Jones, Wieters, Reynolds, Machado, Davis, Ford and Andino.  Hope I got that right.

We just got the roster for the series, and the decision to leave off Steve Johnson, Arrieta and Britton obviously, you had to add some of the starters, but was it a difficult decision, particularly with Johnson because he has been a starting option for you?

BUCK SHOWALTER:  Well, I think it's hard to handicap what's more particularly, this guy or that guy.  They're all hard.  We put a lot of thought, keeping in mind that you've got to be cautious with -- if you have an issue physically with somebody.  I've talked to everybody about whether you leave Avery off, whether you leave Tolleson off.  You could make a case for everybody.  They've been such contributors for us.  As good as we think Steve could field, there's some unknown there with the knee.

But we're going to keep him here.  We're going to send probably a couple guys down to Sarasota to the instructional league to be in that camp there.  But we'll decide that after the game.  Every one of those guys, as I told them today, has to have the mindset that they're playing tomorrow, because they could be.  They could be playing tomorrow.

Obviously given it a lot of thought and readdressed it this morning after the meeting last night to make sure after some sleep, which we didn't have yesterday, that we still felt the same way.  It was a good idea Dan had, so we went with what we felt yesterday.

There's a lot of variables that I won't bore you with, but that's kind of where we're at, and we feel good about it and at the same time feel bad about it.  You're always going to leave somebody off that was a contributor, but it can change very quickly, and that's the mindset they have to have.  They'll all be here for the game tonight for the introductions, and then like I said, there's the potential that a couple of them will head to Sarasota in the morning to be ready physically.  I think we're thinking about Britton and Avery going down there, which Britton, could take him down there and start him because he could be an option, but that could all change tonight if Hammel has a physical problem.

Is Hammel's condition one of the reasons that you have five¿¿ what you'd look at as five starting pitchers, Saunders on the roster, as well?

BUCK SHOWALTER:  No, we have Saunders' availability out of the bullpen, Tillman is out of the bullpen, and that gives us two options as we get into Thursday, hopefully Thursday and hopefully Friday, or hopefully not, just depending on how you look at it.  It gives us the most versatile way to cover our needs.  I think Joe himself is another option with the left¿handed laden roster that they'll have. Both of those guys will be in the bullpen tonight, as will Miguel González.

Kind of the flip side of the first question, Tommy Hunter is one of the guys you probably considered, as well, as a starter.  Is that the reason you went with him?

BUCK SHOWALTER:  That's one of them.  Tommy pitched very well out of the pen.  When we acquired Tommy, we felt like if we presented good options as a starter, we felt like Tommy could be a real contributor as a reliever, too, and he's certainly done that since he's pitched out of the pen.  Plus, he can give us some length out of there if we need it.  The off-day plays into it a lot.

If the weather looks good tomorrow, I think we'll get it in tonight, but with the off¿day looming there, you don't worry too much about extending guys if they're the best option for you.  But that's part of it.  That was part of it.  But the experience all means one thing:  That you've done it before.  It's kind of like Joe's experience in Texas.  The last one -- last two -- have been real good, so I kind of lean on the latest experience.  It's kind of like see a guy's numbers against a certain team, if you take them from 2006 as opposed to 2012, I kind of lean on the most recent stuff.

When you got here, you talked about wanting to get back to the point where you guys were playing big games in front of big crowds.  Is it pretty cool to actually realize you're at that point now?

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