2004 NEWS

2004 News > 10/12/04


By Tom Glavine, MLB.Com
Original Article HERE.

Mets ace and former Cy Young Award winner Tom Glavine pitched in the postseason 11 times -- including five World Series -- while with Atlanta. Now home in Georgia, Glavine will be sitting down with MLB.com to offer his thoughts on the National League Divisional Series between the Braves and Astros. Here's what he had to say after Houston's victory in Game 1 on Wednesday.

I was surprised at the extent of the outcome in Game 5, though it was pretty much kind of what everyone talked about in terms of what were keys to winning in the postseason: getting two-out hits, taking the lead early, and when the other team comes back at you, you answer their comeback. The Astros did all those things yesterday.

It was one of those games that's similar to when you get beat like that in the regular season when everything just comes together for one team. You get some runs early, you get clutch hits later and two-out hits, and all that came together. If any one of those elements is missing, you probably don't have a lopsided score like you did. But on any given day it can all come together and you can score a bunch of runs.

You don't typically see that in the postseason, though, because you expect the pitching to typically offset that. But with three straight days of games and the bullpens being worn out, things came together in the Astros' favor.

I was certainly impressed by Carlos Beltran. I had heard a lot about him and got to see him a little bit during Interleague Play this year. But after seeing him on a steady basis, I can see why everyone raves about him. Offensively he does a lot of things well. He hits for power, he runs well. You love to have a guy like that in the middle of your lineup.

He has a rare combination of average and power and those guys are hard to come by. When you see a guy like that put everything together, when he's hot he certainly capable of being a difference-maker for a team. He was certainly that guy for Houston.

Rafael Furcal had a pretty good series for Atlanta and so did Andruw Jones, who I think hit close to .500. But nobody did it for Atlanta to the extent that Beltran did and that's why he stood out so much. He put together everything on the field and everyone noticed that he was the best player in the series. That's why he's being recognized that way. What he did was just fantastic and it diminishes what the other guys did, most notably Andruw and Raffy. Beltran's performance was the difference in the series.

Now for the Astros, I think they have to look for more of the same against St. Louis. They need to score runs and put hits together and put pressure on the Cardinals' staff, in particular the first two games. They are behind the eight ball a little bit in St. Louis because Roger [Clemens] and Roy [Oswalt] are conceivably done until Games 3 and 4. They have to go to St. Louis and gain a split with the third and fourth starters.

Short of someone coming in and giving you the kind of pitching performance you don't expect, you have to get the offensive performance you've been getting to gain a split with the knowledge that Roger and Roy will be pitching two of the three games at home.

As for the Braves, I don't know what happens now. I anticipate, like always, a lot of changes. The Braves never stood pat, always changing from year to year. Whether we see major changes, I don't know. You'll probably see major changes in the sense that they may lose guys who were big contributors.

But when you think of major changes with the core guys like Andruw, Furcal, [John] Smoltz and Chipper [Jones], I doubt anything will happen with those guys. There's a good chance that you'll see other guys who weren't lifelong Braves, who played prominent roles, as the guys they'll probably lose.