St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Joe Kelly spoke before the start of World Series Game 6 against the Boston Red Sox. Kelly has been named as the Game 7 starter.
Q. If you were to get the Game 7 start, would the night before still be the video games, Call of Duty, the whole thing?
JOE KELLY: It would be, except games are later out here, 8:00 games, and they end up running a little bit longer. So usually on the road I don’t play too many video games.
Q. Can you provide some insight on what it was like to sit inside an airplane for seven hours. You did a little bit of tweeting, were you also monitoring Twitter and what the fans were saying?
JOE KELLY: Yeah, it was ‑‑ I mean, there wasn’t really much else we could do except sit there, hang out with each other, try to play babysitter. With all the little kids running around, everybody switched, all the younger guys.
Yeah, we messed around on Twitter, looked at tweets, #cardsplaneproblems was going around, which was pretty funny. We had a good time with it. We enjoyed it. We don’t want to do it all the time, but it wasn’t that bad.
Q. Can you talk about the pregame preparation that you usually have with Yadier Molina, and how much he has helped you in your pitching?
JOE KELLY: Yeah, the preparation, I think it’s probably similar between all the other clubs. We both sit down and you watch some video on the team you’re going to face. Some guys like to do it days in advance, some guys like to do it before they pitch, an hour before they pitch. Usually you go ahead and have a meeting with the pitching coach and the bullpen coach and obviously your catchers and Yadi. You just put together a game plan, and just talk about what you want to do with these guys. If one pitch isn’t working and another pitch is working, you’ll tell him, hey, I want to go to whatever is working for me that day.
But sitting down in to hear what he has to say. He likes our pitchers to do their own research, not just rely on him. So we end up trying to figure out if we both saw the same exact thing in the hitter. But we usually just have that kind of meeting before with Yadi.
Q. Is there anybody you’ve faced in any series this year that has given you as much of an issue or commanded as much attention as Ortiz has this series?
JOE KELLY: I think there has. I think the attention is just because it’s the World Series. It’s the only game going on, everybody can see what this guy is doing. I think we’ve had other series where guys have done just as much damage against us as he has. But obviously if it’s during the regular season, nobody looks at them. If it was Anthony Rizzo on the Cubs, nobody is looking at that.
But like I said, he’s a good hitter and he’s very hot. So we’ve got to be aware of him whenever he’s at the plate.
Q. Every pitcher who sat in that seat and all the other seats in the postseason, they always talk about “it’s just another game. Don’t change anything dramatically.” Does that go out the window on Game 7?
JOE KELLY: I don’t know if it would go out the window. Obviously today it is Game 6 and obviously it is different than making a regular season start. Right now it’s win or go home. It’s the last two games of the year. But I wouldn’t say all of it goes out the window. You don’t want to be cliché and say that it’s no big deal; it’s Game 7. But, I don’t know, whoever gets the ball at the time is definitely going to go ahead and try to focus on their pitches and not worry about how big of a situation it really is.
Q. When you look back at your first start in the series at the pitch sequences and pitch selection, did the game go pretty much per game plan or did you and Yadi find yourself adjusting on the fly quite a lot?
JOE KELLY: I think that if it went exactly how you plan it, you’d have a no‑hitter throughout nine innings. Obviously it never goes exactly how you plan. There’s always some that’s going to happen where you’re not going to have a pitch working, maybe you had the pitch working earlier on in the game, and you get a little tired and your curveball or slider starts flying out, so you go to a change‑up.
But I think that’s what pitching is, you’ve got to be able to learn that on the fly, especially you’ve got to pick it up early, especially in the playoffs. You don’t have time to make mistakes and stay in there too long.
Q. You guys have spent a lot of season describing how close you are as a team. I wonder if seven hours is the breaking point with how close you are, eight hours, nine hours? If Shelby is still your best man after that? If you guys left the airplane and all went out to dinner together just to be with each other some more?
JOE KELLY: No, there’s no restaurants open when we got in really. Everyone was trying to, on the way over, call different restaurants. A couple of cheesecakes, a couple PF Chang’s. Even if they were closed, we’d say, can we stop by and pick it up? Nobody went the room service route because everyone thought every other guy would go the room service route and it would take three hours to get your food.
Yeah, there’s no breaking point. We had a good time, like I said. It doesn’t happen all the time. And it’s very rare, and so you’ve got to take the fun in whatever situation you’re at and just try to roll with it.
Q. It’s a little strange being asked about a start you might not make, but in your own mind how confident are you that there will be a Game 7?
JOE KELLY: You want to be confident with everything. And like Mike said earlier, we’ve got to win today to get to tomorrow. Whatever that means, any way that I could be part of the game today, if I have to run, you never know the crazy thing that could happen. But if you don’t win today, obviously there’s no Game 7. We’re going to go out there and try to do everything we can today to try to get that win.