Q&A with Nick Swisher
Outfielder turning the page after tough Game 5 vs. Halos
ANAHEIM -- Taking over as the Yankees' starting right fielder in April, Nick Swisher fit right into the potent lineup, bringing a patient switch-hitting approach that saw him become one of five Yankees players to belt 25 or more home runs while driving in 82 runs for the American League East champions.
Throughout the 2009 postseason, Swisher will take part in a Q&A with MLB.com, sharing his thoughts after every game. Swisher spoke after the Yankees' 7-6 loss in Game 5 of the American League Championship Series, heading back to New York still one win from advancing to the World Series.
MLB.com: How do you describe the roller-coaster highs and lows of a game like this one?
Swisher: It's the same that it's been the whole postseason. Every game we've had feels like it's been pretty close. We had the lead coming in, lost it, fought back and I had the opportunity to tie the game up. It just didn't happen.
MLB.com: You've said your postseason hasn't gone the way you've wanted it to. What were your thoughts coming up to the plate in the ninth inning with the bases loaded and two outs?
Swisher: In that situation, I just wanted to come through in a clutch spot for us. The crowd is going crazy. We're the only game going out there and that stage is huge. It didn't happen. I knew we only needed one run to tie the game, so I'm trying to get something I can hit up the middle, a line drive back up the chute. I'm trying to protect the plate. I got the fastball I wanted, but popped it up a little bit. If it's a half an inch above the ball, it's probably a hit and a line drive. I've just got to think about that for a little bit.
MLB.com: What is the feeling as this team heads back to New York, now up 3-2 in the series on a night when it could have been over?
Swisher: I really don't know what I'm thinking right now. I'm just kind of trying to forget about it as quick as I can and start focusing on the things ahead. This one is frustrating. You want to be the guy that comes through in that situation for your teammates. It just didn't happen.
MLB.com: You've said it's going to be a long flight, but this team seems generally able to turn the page quickly. Why do you think that's been the case?
Swisher: You might have to look at the leaders of the team. Those guys have done a great job of leading us in the right direction. We follow suit. Like I said, this team is very confident. We're going home and we're very comfortable playing in our house. That's good. We'll go and have a great workout and be ready to go on Saturday.
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.