Pregame interview with Paul Byrd
Cleveland pitcher talks about long road back from injury
Is it easier to pitch at Jacobs Field than it would be at Fenway Park? How are they different?PAUL BYRD: I think they're pretty similar: Short left field, higher wall, Fenway being a little shorter. But they're both -- I'll say hitters' parks, and something you have to be conscious of. I guess in a big situation you have to be conscious of the short left field, although I think Boston is a little shorter. You had a high ERA here at Jacobs Field, is there any particular reason for that? PAUL BYRD: I don't know the answer to that, other than I had two absolute disaster outings here. I had a game against the Yankees, which I just got killed. And then I had a game against Seattle where I did not have good stuff and just gave up, I don't know what it was, seven, eight, nine runs in a couple innings. I think that hurt me. But overall I'm not afraid to pitch at Jacobs Field, and I'm looking forward to it. I was wondering if you could take me through the double pump with Matsui last week, what kind of conversation you had with the umpire. When did you decide to do that and what you took away from that discussion? I don't remember who the umpire was, when a guy can step out and when your delivery is actually initiated? PAUL BYRD: Yeah, Fieldin Culbreth was the umpire, we call him Cubby. Yeah, I did a double pump to Matsui when he didn't like that, and the umpire called time out, and I said, hey, you can't do it. You can't just call time out because he didn't like my motion. He said, well, I gave him time out. I said, well, if that's the case you could give him a time out right before I'm ready to deliver the ball. He said, no, I wouldn't do that but if you just start your motion I've got no problem with it. I disagree, but I went back and did the double pump again and Matsui didn't step out, so maybe I should have triple pumped (laughter). I didn't have a problem with it after that. I think it was all right. Could you just give us some background on hooking up with Kelly Shoppach? Have any superstitions come about from your working with him? PAUL BYRD: Yeah, I don't know how to answer that. Kelly before the season was better at throwing out runners at second base. I don't throw very hard, so I think it was a situation where if Wedge needed to give Vic a day off, I was the logical pitcher for him to do so because I don't throw very hard. My delivery at home, I try to be quick, but there's some pitches, like I was trying to learn a split, where it was real important that I stayed back over the rubber. So I wasn't real quick to home. So that made Shoppach the logical choice. We hooked up a couple times and it worked. It was never my intention for him to be my catcher all through the season. It's worked out okay. I call Victor Martinez my personal first baseman because I like for him to feel good about the situation. Vic is my locker buddy, we locker right next to each other. There was never at any time any sort of rough edges between us. It's all been very, very good. Shoppach has done a good job. I was real happy with Shoppach catching me in the playoffs, Eric not changing anything. I think that shows Eric Wedge's loyalty, which I rank right up there with Bobby Cox. I think he's a tremendously loyal manager, and that's one of the ways you get a lot out of your players is being loyal to them. I was very happy he went with Kelly Shoppach, and I was very happy that Kelly delivered with a couple doubles, and I think that was not expected but welcomed. Would you talk about how you developed your wind up, the old fashioned, over the arms, can you talk about how that developed? PAUL BYRD: Yes.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.