Brandon Backe postgame interview
Game 4 starter discusses his pitching performance
Your dad told me you once threw 213 pitches in a high school game, and you never thought you'd really pitch in the majors after that. Can you address that; did you ever think there would be a day like today?
BRANDON BACKE: Today is a lot similar to what happened last year in Game 5 for me. Going through the first three innings, not giving up a hit, I was thinking dejavu all over again.
That day I actually pitched 12 innings and it might have been 213, it was over 200 pitches and ended up giving up a game winning home run in the bottom of the 12th and that was pretty heartbreaking. It was one of my best games I've ever been a part of until last year, and this one today also ranks up to one of the top ones, although I didn't go as long as I wanted to. But I felt really good out there and it was great to have it.
How frustrated were you just being pulled after only 80 pitches. You struck out your last two hitters; just how frustrating was that?
BACKE: Well, at the time, you know, I'm so wound up and involved in what I'm doing out there on the mound, I have to be honest, when I saw Phil coming out and pointing to the bullpen, I was a little upset. But that's what competitors do. If I wasn't upset, I think there would be something wrong with me. I just felt like I was doing pretty good today and was battling and apparently it was just the right time for me to come out.
The bullpen has been our backbone on the team, so if I'm going to give it up to anybody, I'd rather give it up to our bullpen than anybody else.
Did you feel like you were struggling at all?
BACKE: I didn't feel like I was struggling at all today. I felt like I had pretty good movement on my fastball, location was there for the most part. My slider was working really good today.
I know there's a lot of things you can't say, but let's talk a little bit about the strike zone today, because it certainly seemed to be inconsistent and we all sort of know all of the worn out phrases that you say; talk a little bit about the strike zone?
BACKE: The strike zone was fine for me today as far as I'm concerned. Trust me, I've been through a lot of difficult situations out there on the mound with the umpire or an umpire being inconsistent.
So I think I really don't, I haven't looked at the pitches that were called strikes against them. But on my side when I'm out there looking down at the plate, I thought he was pretty fair for me today, and that's the only thing that I can really say. I'm not out there looking at those pitches that those Cardinals pitchers were throwing.
So I have no idea where they were, and if they didn't argue it, then they didn't want to win. So it's good that they argued it; it's fine.
You're known for being pretty emotional anyways, were your emotions any different today than some other big games you've been coming into?
BACKE: No. I mean, I was pretty excited last night. After dinner, I went down to Galveston and had some dinner and tried to get some sleep last night. I got a few hours of sleep in, just being excited for this game, just this opportunity to have it again and possibly leave today two games up and one more to go. That's all that was on my mind, just go out there and do what I can do, don't try and do too much, and just be good today. That's all I was trying to tell myself.
Can you talk about your parents, how important has that been, their support through your up and downs?
BACKE: My parents have been behind me the whole way. Even when I was a little kid, I've always got the equipment that I needed to have to play this game and just all the support. I was down in Galveston on Friday night and went to actually the home coming fastball game and just had a blast, brought back memories, kind of relaxed me for a game today. They showed a lot of support there.
I can't ask for enough support. Everybody is giving me everything and it's great. The fans here are unbelievable and I think that's one reason why we play so well here.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.