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10/12/08 11:50 PM ET

A postgame interview with Joe Torre

Dodgers manager talks about getting to Moyer early

What enabled you to win tonight after losing the first two of the series?

JOE TORRE: Well, location probably helps. A little more friendly here for our ballclub. And we pitched. We pitched well in the first game, but we didn't give them a chance to get off the mat tonight.

Cory Wade really came in and did the job first and -- what was it, first and second, nobody out, runs scored. And he pitched the two innings. I thought that was huge for us at this time. Because this ballclub is very explosive, no question.

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Did the first inning and the way you guys came out, have some fire, surprise you at all, and how important was it for you?

JOE TORRE: The toughest part about waiting for that first inning is the off-day, even though you don't mind the off-day with the travel and everything. But I have a good feeling, this ballclub has had a personality here all during the playoffs. I just felt that we were ready to play. If we were going to play well enough, we have to wait and see on that one.

But I certainly was pleased with the first inning. I mean, [Rafael] Furcal, that gives you an indication what he means at the top of our batting order. And then the two-out base hit by Blake DeWitt I think was the back-breaker for them. Because he was down 0-2 and he really kept things together.

You seemed to get on [Jamie] Moyer early in counts. Was that by design, something you guys talked about?

JOE TORRE: You know, Jamie, he knows how to pitch and he knows how to pitch around the strike zone. And we just tried to get him on the plate a little bit.

But, again, we try to do that with most pitchers, but Jamie is so good at what he does, he has offspeed. And I think if you see ballclubs struggle against offspeed-type of pitchers, especially left-handers, it's basically because you're trying to get a little too big, too long, and I thought we were pretty compact. It was an unusual first inning. We had a couple of guys strike out and we score five runs.

I just was happy that for the most part we were able to keep them on the plate and make him throw strikes and we were able to take advantage of that.

Did you think the umpire's warning was necessary, appropriate?

JOE TORRE: You know, I thought it was the safe thing to do. You know, again, with the passion that goes on in this postseason, I mean, you work all year to get here, and I think the umpires just basically tried to do the safe thing. And I can't fault them in that.

Shane Victorino said he thought it was almost in order that one of their hitters was going to get hit, given the situation. Whether you object to the location of [Hiroki] Kuroda's pitch, is that understandable for you?

JOE TORRE: Nobody wants to get hit in the head. We certainly -- over the years, playing time or whatever, that's certainly frightening. I've been hit a couple of times. I'm not sure that that was the intention, even though the pitch was there.

Again, you try to throw a ball inside and sometimes it gets away. But certainly there was no intent on hurting somebody in that area. That I can tell you for sure.

Tensions have been brewing clearly since Philadelphia, Game 2. How much of that is the passion of the postseason and how much true bad blood is there developing between these two ballclubs?

JOE TORRE: I think the passion is what causes the emotion, to be honest with you. As they say, you play 162 games, you come down to these seven games and you're four games away. In our case, three games now. They're two games away from the World Series. This is something that we all crave.

And I really don't look at it as bad blood. I really don't. It's baseball. And to me for years -- and it's changed a little bit now -- but for years, baseball had a way of policing itself.

And I really don't think this is anything that's going to be long lasting. I think the game, each game is going to take on a life of its own.

Following up on what you just said, I would have thought this was an example of the players kind of taking care of it themselves. There was an incident and the players kind of policed it, now you're on to baseball. The location, obviously, the ball here was a problem. Was this an example of the players kind of handling this on the field?

JOE TORRE: That's what I mean by saying game polices itself. Years ago when I was playing, the schedule was balanced more and there weren't as many teams. A lot of stuff took care of itself during the course of the year. And it was something that really wasn't as objectionable as it is today.

I'm not saying it was better then or it's better now. It's just the way it's evolved. But to me you have to -- you have teammates. And you're there for your teammates and you have to support them. And that's what I think a lot of this is all about.

You said something, I guess it was yesterday, about momentum. Have you seized it?

JOE TORRE: I think for the moment we have. I mean, to me it's all about -- it's short series. You win a game and you have that good feeling about yourself and maybe hopefully we've planted a seed of doubt.

But, again, two good clubs. Two good clubs playing the postseason. And the only way you get to the postseason is to be able to handle failure. This wasn't a failure, but losing is considered a failure. You get to the postseason by being able to dismiss that. And I'm sure they're going to come out -- they still have an advantage over us, and, again, the momentum continues if we pitch well tomorrow.

Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.