THE MODERATOR:  Thanks for coming, Joe.  Who has a question for Joe?

Q.  Joe after the whole season, how tough is it to have the season end in this fashion?  What do you think went wrong with the office the last 10, 12 days?

JOE GIRARDI:  It is extremely difficult.  You work a long time to get to this point every year and to have it end abruptly, and it's going end abruptly for all but one team, it is really, really difficult.

We didn't swing the bats.  It wasn't one guy, it wasn't two guys, it was a bunch of guys.  And it's hard to win when you don't score runs.

Q.  Joe, you tried to do things and it wasn't like you kept sends out the same lineup.  Is there a frustration level at that that you exhausted every possibility you can try and still weren't able to find it?

JOE GIRARDI:  One thing I know is I'm getting effort from the guys.  And, you know, so I don't become frustrated.  You know, we come to work every day to win, and it hurts when you don't win.  There's no doubt about it.  Obviously life goes on, but sometimes as a manager you have to make tough calls.  Sometimes the calls are simple to make.  And you live with them and you move on.

Q.  How much on the same level, Joe, how much did it surprise you that the different the configurations that you tried, no matter how they were reshuffled or who you used, it was kind of the same result?

JOE GIRARDI:  There are a lot of good hitters in that room, and to be able to shut a lot of them down is very surprising to me.  And some of the guys that replaced other guys are good Big League players that have had a lot of success in their career.  Collectively we weren't able to get it done.

Q.  Joe, CC didn't seem particularly sharp from the first inning.  After he gave up the home run in the fourth, I thought you might have considered getting him out before the game got out ever hand.  Did you think about that?

JOE GIRARDI:  Yeah, he had Fielder and he got Fielder out and looked pretty sharp on that.  I had Eppley up.  I wasn't hesitant, but I have a lot of confidence in CC.

Q.  Is there any way to explain Robinson Cano?

JOE GIRARDI:  No, that one is kind of baffling for me.  Because we have seen the type of hitter that Robby Cano is.  For him to struggle as long as he did, and it seems a lot longer than it actually was, we're talking about nine games.  And nine games during the course of the season you say ahhh, but to see it, it's pretty difficult for me to understand.

Q.  Can you put your finger on anything?

JOE GIRARDI:  No, I can't.  You wonder if some of the balls that he hit hard early fall in, if it is a different story.  I don't know.

Q.  Do you think Game 5 took anything out of CC?

JOE GIRARDI:  It's possible.  I don't know.  He had an extra day.  I think he was well rested.  But, I mean, you look at everything and you try to examine it, and you are never really going to know.  But you are going to evaluate everything that you do.

Q.  You sent Alex up there with two guys on.  You were down by five, I believe.  Were you thinking maybe this is the spot he hits the home run and all of a sudden you're back in the ballgame?

JOE GIRARDI:  Yeah, that's why I sent him up there.  You are guaranteed a spot against him against the left‑handed pitcher and he swung the bat good off all year long, and it didn't happen.

Q.  Joe, I know you were saying that you didn't want to tackle this while the series was going on.  Now what steps do you need to take to rebuild your relationship with Alex?

JOE GIRARDI:  I don't know.  As far as I know, we're okay.  It's not something I wanted to do all ‑‑ you know that.

But I don't have any signals that he's mad at me.  I know he wanted to be in there.  I understand that.  But I don't have any signals.  Now, if there are things that I have to do, I'm going to do them.  But as of right now ‑‑

Q.  Do you feel that you need to have talk with him, or do you ‑‑

JOE GIRARDI:  Well, I'll have a talk with all of my players as we move forward.  That's what I'm going to do.

Q.  Joe, to have to sit Alex Rodriguez, to not have a functioning Alex, how much did that almost devastate your lineup?

JOE GIRARDI:  You know, the one thing I don't want to focus on is Alex, in a sense, because it wasn't just him that didn't hit.  You know, if the other guys hit, one guy's struggles aren't going to show as much.  But when you have so many guys struggling, and you're Alex Rodriguez, you're going to be the people ‑‑ he is going to be the one that people talk about the most.

But there are a lot of guys mightily struggling.  Not just a little bit, a lot.

Q.  Joe, is there something that you said to the team that you can share with us?

JOE GIRARDI:  Sure.  Well, I told them it's tough.  This is never easy.  We've been ‑‑ I've been on both sides.  It's never easy.  There is only one team that's going to be happy when the year ends.

But they did a lot of good things and they overcame a lot of good things this year.  We know we fell short.  We understand that.

But how do we get better?  I mean, that's my message.  How do we all, including myself, how do we all get better next year so we don't have this feeling.

THE MODERATOR:  Anything else you want to say before we go?

JOE GIRARDI:  I thank you for my privacy with my father.

THE MODERATOR:  Thank you.