QUESTION: Is this the kind of game that you got Mark Mulder for? Is that why you went out and got him in the off season?TONY LA RUSSA: Well, one of them because you don't get here unless he steps up during the season and pitches a lot of games like the one he's going to be confronted with tomorrow, but you know, you don't win many games in a year, you don't get to October. To win you need to pitch, so -- first -- the first responsibility goes to Mark. QUESTION: Tony, talk about the differences between a five-game series and a seven-game series in terms of preparation and how you have to prepare for different types of series and how momentum changes. TONY LA RUSSA: I mean, I think realistically that the two less games, winning three versus winning four, losing three versus losing four, there's something there, you know. If you're in a good position, you want to end it quickly. If you're not, you want to string it out as long as you can, but technically there isn't a whole lot of difference. I mean, the way you play seven is, you know, one game at a time stuff. You're going to play home and road. You know, one of the factors when you win the division is you get the day off, you know. That is not like you play during the season so there's a little adjustment for that, but it's just very intense and very much each inning and each at bat, each pitch. You multiply that times three wins and five losses, hopefully. QUESTION: Tony as a manager you've seen just about everything in this game, I'm sure. How surprised are you that Peavy tried to pitch during the game yesterday? TONY LA RUSSA: You know, I had a real positive experience meeting him at the All-Star game, but I also talked to Bruce over the years. That's exactly what you would expect from him. I mean, he's not just a great young pitcher, he's just a great pitcher or he wouldn't have had a year like he had this year. I read what he said where he had, you know, a good bullpen. It looked like he was throwing the ball good. It's possible when he stubbed his toe and tripped he might have tweaked it. I don't know what he said, but it's possible his control might have not been the same. He'll take this experience away the whole rest of his life. If he hadn't tripped, he probably would have been a very typical game for him.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.