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October 8, 2021

Brandon Lowe

St. Petersburg, Florida, USA

Tropicana Field

Tampa Bay Rays

Pregame 2 Press Conference

Q. Hey, Brandon. Thanks for coming down. Can you kind of take us back to the moment of Randy's steal last night? Did you know it was coming? Were you the least or most surprised person in the ballpark, and just what do you think of that moment?

BRANDON LOWE: Yeah, I mean, I definitely had a feeling it was coming. He was being very aggressive throughout the whole at-bat honestly. I don't know if he was trying to get Taylor's attention or if he was just trying to see how much he could get without him moving, and then when it happened, as he broke, I was just going through my head I was, like, it's normal. Don't do anything. Like, don't give anything away. Taylor is not looking. Vazquez isn't looking. Treat it like an at-bat, and as soon as he stepped off, I was, like, got to get out. Don't be in the way.

Honestly, you kind of saw it coming with how aggressive he was, but for him to actually do it is kind of surprising.

Q. So you saw it out of your peripheral vision basically?

BRANDON LOWE: Yeah, you kind of just see -- with it being open on that side, you could see everything that he was doing, but it was pretty cool. I don't think I've ever seen that in a game before.

Q. An internal battle of how long you hang in there, is that what you are saying?

BRANDON LOWE: What's that?

Q. An internal battle as to how long to hang in the box?

BRANDON LOWE: Yeah, honestly, I have never been a part of that kind of play. I think we practiced it in college, like, once. This is what you have to do if he throws it, like, swing and miss. It never happened in college. It's never happened before.

And honestly it was a baseball play. You know that he is going to -- he is not going unless he knows he is going to be safe, so just tried to do everything I could to not mess that up.

Q. Brandon, just between what you saw last year and seeing Randy do all that last night, is it kind of just like he turns into a different guy this time of year seems like?

BRANDON LOWE: I think the calendar switched to October, and he just kind of woke up. He is, like, it's my time to go and my time to shine again. It's very welcomed to have on the team, and I'm excited to see what he can do for the rest of the postseason for us.

Q. Defensively last night, Brandon, seemed like you guys were really well positioned when the ball was put in play. Just how important has that been for you all season, as far as helping the infield defense kind of do the work you need to do?

BRANDON LOWE: It's great. Honestly, there are some times that it's frustrating. You get into the shift where somebody takes a bad swing and kind of dribbles the ball, and it's a hit, but you look at what happened yesterday with Dalbec, and I don't think he hit a ball under 100 miles an hour and got out every time. I mean, it's stuff like that that the big hits got taken away in big situations.

For us to have the faith and the trust that the guys have put together the scouting report and understand where they want to position us, they know what they're talking about. They've watched the film. They know what they're doing, and go out there and try to make the plays when it comes to you.

Q. Hey, Brandon. I think as a group last night you did, like, as a team 10 balls or so, 100-mile-an-hour or better and only had five strikeouts, and I know you had some bad luck too. How pleased were you overall with the group for first game of the postseason for the quality of the at-bats?

BRANDON LOWE: Yeah, winning a ballgame, we're more than excited, and to do it against a guy that's been very tough against us the whole year. I feel like every time that E Rod has pitched against us, he has pitched a pretty good game, and we knew that coming in that we had to really go out there and grind out our at-bats and not give him anything and kind of take what he gives us.

And to be able to go out there and put together such great at-bats gives us a really good look into what our postseason can be. You know, need to go out and play our game, do what we can do and not try to do too much.

Q. Brandon, you've had somewhat of a front row seat with Wander since he came up. Obviously, he has been preparing for this since he was a young, young teenager. Can you talk about progress you've seen from his debut to now and about that baseball acumen?

BRANDON LOWE: Yeah. It's, obviously, nothing short of impressive what he has been able to do at such a young age. It's incredible to see, incredible to be a part of and be able to watch it unfold. I think everybody watching his first -- when he did debut, you know, I think there might have been a little bit of him trying to do a little too much. You know, wanting to hit homers or, you know, play a different game, and gave him a couple weeks to kind of settle in and understand it's the same game he has been playing his whole life and just go out there and be him. Do what he does, and we've been able to witness that for the past, I don't know, two months, three months.

That's what he has been doing. You saw it in the postseason. He has kind of taken that same idea of this is the same game. I'm not going to make anything bigger or different about it. I'm going to go out there and do what I do and he is going to go out and get two hits and drive in runs for us every night.

Q. Brandon, you're hitting third for the second night in a row against a left-handed starter. How much better have you felt against left-handed pitchers in the last couple of months as opposed to earlier in the season?

BRANDON LOWE: I wanted to ask Cash if something got mixed up on the lineup card or something like that. I don't think I've hit third off a lefty all year, but it's all the work that we've been able to put in in the cage and stuff like that, and it definitely led up to my confidence rising against lefties and righties honestly overall at the plate, and to see that confidence get reflected back from our manager and stuff like that to put me in the three hole is definitely rewarding.

Q. Did you notice it was the same lineup two days in a row? That also is pretty unusual.

BRANDON LOWE: I actually didn't notice that. Normally when we show up, it's a pretty quick passing by the lineup. You see where you're at, and you go about your business, and I haven't had time to sit down and look at the lineup yet.

Is that the first time all year that we've had the same line-up or pretty close?

Q. You've had the same lineup three times this year.

BRANDON LOWE: That's kind of crazy, but it shows how versatile this lineup is and how good of a team that we have that we don't have to set guys in stone in one certain spot. You can move them around, and he has a lot of flexibility, which will be nice throughout this whole run that we'll have.

Q. You alluded the other day how comfortable you feel hitting at Fenway. Obviously, the numbers are super high. What is it? Is it the wall? Is it the intimacy of where the stands are, the mound? What do you think leads you to be so comfortable?

BRANDON LOWE: Is that in Boston?

Q. In Boston. I'm sorry. Your numbers there are really good.

BRANDON LOWE: Honestly, I can't tell you what it is. Every time we go there, I don't know whether it's the fans that they have that it makes such a good atmosphere or, you know, what it is, but I feel comfortable at the plate. There's a good box there. There's a good batter's eye. I see the ball well, and when there's a wall 300 feet away, it makes it a little bit easier on a lefty, I can get jammed or I can get beat and still kind of fillet one the other way, and hopefully it bangs off that wall.

MODERATOR: Thanks so much. Appreciate you coming in.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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