Post-Game Interview With Phil Hughes

On Sunday afternoon, Phil Hughes pitched his best game yet as a professional. We had a chance to chat briefly with Phil after his brilliant performance. He tells us what he had going, what he didn't and what he expects from himself next time out. Find out this and much more. (Free Preview!) First of all, Phil, we would like to congratulate you on such an outstanding performance. (6 IP, 0 hits, 0 runs, 3 BB, 8 Ks)

Phil Hughes: Thank You. Phil, did you feel any different today than any other days going into the bullpen to warm up?

Phil Hughes: No, I actually felt the same as any other day. Considering you did have a no hitter going through six innings, the obvious reason for your exit had to have been a strict pitch count restriction. How many pitches did you have when you were lifted from the game.

Phil Hughes: I had 94 pitches. When you began to realize you were yet to surrender a hit, was it understood that no matter what, you were going to be taken out when you reached your pitch limit?

Phil Hughes: Yeah, I knew. I just went out there and did what I had to do. When I come out of a game is not under my control. What do you think helped you the most to hold down a team with the second highest batting average in the league?

Phil Hughes: I think what it came down to was just me making my pitches. It didn't matter how good their hitting was. It was much more about me making pitches. Here is more of a general question. What do you think has been the most difficult adjustment to full season ball for you?

Phil Hughes: I'd definitely say the biggest adjustment has been all of the traveling we do. All the bus rides and traveling are tough. That's probably the biggest adjustment. In most of the games you have pitched this year, it seems most of your strikeouts come in the early innings, while still continuing to dominate through the rest of the game as well. What do you attribute these early strikeouts to?

Phil Hughes: I think it is probably because my fastball has really been exploding out of my hand in the last couple of outings I have had. What is something, if anything, that you'd like to improve upon for your next start?

Phil Hughes: Well, I would like to start getting ahead early in counts. That's one thing I'd like to improve on for my next time out there. Speaking of getting ahead, if there was anything to point out in this game was that you did allow three walks. Did those walks come on close pitches or were you just not going to give into hitters at that point in the game?

Phil Hughes: Yeah, I would say it was just because those pitches were just missing by a little bit. What was going through your mind by the time you got to the fifth and sixth inning with a no-hitter still intact?

Phil Hughes: I actually didn't really think about it a whole lot because I had walks. Walks are just like hits to me so I didn't feel like I was pitching all that great. So, I didn't really think about it much when I was out there. So in your mind, Phil, the best of you is still yet to come?

Phil Hughes: I think so, definitely. I really didn't have my best command today. But, I still did well. So far, are you comfortable with how effective your curveball has been?

Phil Hughes: Yes, its been good. Most of my strikeouts have been with my fastball. Let me ask you this, did anyone on the team keep up the tradition of not talking to you when you hadn't given up a hit?

Phil Hughes: Well, no one really talks to me when I pitch anyway. What do you think the biggest difference is between pitching to these SAL hitters and the hitters in the GCL?

Phil Hughes: They hit mistakes more often than the guys did in the Gulf Coast League. Do you think having good run support affected how you went after hitters? Did that allow you to challenge them more?

Phil Hughes: Yeah, I think so. would like to thank Phil Hughes for his time and efforts in answering these questions.

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