DETROIT -- More people paying more attention. More, much more, on the line. A big difference between the regular season and the postseason, Jim Leyland said Tuesday, is that everybody has an opinion on lineup changes, how the pitching should be handled and in-game strategy.
All legitimate, the Tigers' manager added. But even though he conceded that 21-game winner Max Scherzer was an option out of the bullpen in must-win Game 4 of the American League Division Series, for the most part, Leyland doesn't believe in doing things differently in October.
"This is a time of year where it's really interesting, because everybody comes up with all these different scenarios. 'Maybe you could try this? Did you think of this and that?'" he said.
"It's interesting, but we are what we are. This is the way we play the game. This is who we are. There are no tricks. We've got [Austin] Jackson leading off and [Torii] Hunter and [Miguel] Cabrera and [Prince] Fielder and [Victor] Martinez and [Jhonny] Peralta and [Alex] Avila, [Omar] Infante. That's who our guys are. There's nothing to try to pull out of the hat, nothing different, at this time of year. There are not a lot of secrets in this."
Those comments came in the wake of Monday night's National League DS game in which Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez didn't use closer Craig Kimbrel to try for a two-inning save against the Dodgers. Instead, setup man David Carpenter allowed a two-run homer to Juan Uribe and Atlanta was eliminated.
"I've got my own problems, [but] I thought Fredi Gonzalez did it exactly right," Leyland said."Some people can disagree with that. ... That's fine. That's what this postseason is all about, different ideas and different thoughts."
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. Paul Hagen is a reporter for MLB.com. Bobby Nightengale is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.