A conversation with Padres OF Brian Giles

Everyone has heard the doom at PETCO Park. Where hitters go to die. On base machine Brian Giles has felt the heavy hand of the San Diego park swat his balls down into doubles instead of the homer he may have desired. It is why many have pegged him to leave town after this year. But, until then, he braves (no pun intended) his home park and knows how important playing at home is as the Padres get ready to take on St. Louis in the opening round of the playoffs.

PETCO Park is a tough place to score runs and the Cardinals are a team that boasts some heavy hitters. How do you handle things when you get back home?

Brian Giles: We have our work cut out for us. We have been saying all along that we can't give up games at home. We worked so hard during spring training to get to this point and we have to handle our own business.

You can't worry about what other teams do. We have to take care of business ourselves. They are not going to hand us this series. We have to go out and win baseball games and continue to play better. We have to try and win the series.

Obviously you would like to take a game in St. Louis, but is it a comfort coming home to a park that you guys went 46-35 in during the regular season.

Brian Giles: We know how it plays. Statistics show that this is the second toughest park to score runs in, last year. It is a difficult park to generate runs and you have to do the little things to try and get production out of your offense.

It is a big park. You won't hit as many homers here as you will other places. You don't score many runs here. Teams come in here and only play three games at a time so they really don't change their approach. Maybe we are a little too conscious and try to hit the ball too hard.

You led the Majors in walks with 119 and had an on base percentage of .423, fourth best in baseball, is there any urgency to drive in some more runs now that the playoffs are here?

Brian Giles: For me, that is the strength of my game. Be patient and get myself in good hitting counts. Subsequently, you are probably going to get better pitches to hit. When things are going well, that is what I do.

You always want to drive in runs any time they are out there. Sometimes you have to pass the torch and it is up to the next guy. If we can do that and keep that mind frame, we are going to score runs and we will beat a good team.


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