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October 8, 2021

J.D. Martinez

St. Petersburg, Florida, USA

Tropicana Field

Boston Red Sox

Postgame 2 Press Conference

Red Sox 14, Rays 6

Q. Hi, J.D. How did your incorporation in the lineup help rejuvenate an offense that was very, very lethargic in Game 1?

J.D. MARTINEZ: I don't know. That's a question you have to ask everybody else. I don't know. I don't know, I think when I'm in there, I kind of just stretch the lineup out a little bit more. We have a lot of good hitters on this team, and, you extend the middle of the order just a little bit longer, it makes a big difference.

Q. J.D., can you walk us through the process of all the treatment that you needed to get today to get yourself ready, how that decision happened? And did you ever even dream of having a night like this after all you've been through?

J.D. MARTINEZ: Yeah. I mean, like I said, earlier in the interview, hats off to our athletic training staff because they did miracles. You know, it's just everybody from the massage therapist guys to the strength coaches to the hitting coaches, everybody. Everybody was involved and what they can do to help to try to get me back, and we kind of just came up with a plan of what we're going to do.

It's one of those things that was -- I told Alex, he is, like, are you good? I'm, like, I hate to say I am because if I'm not, then what's going to happen if I go in there first at-bat and it bites when I swing? It's my front foot, so when I land, I kind of roll into it. What's going to happen? I don't want to be in a spot where if I come out of the game we leave Devers out to dry. So he was aware of that, and I told him that, and that's why he kind of chose to put me behind Verdugo today just in case.

But came down to the BP today. Yesterday I didn't feel it. I told him, I said, I got like a putter and an iron today with my golf swing. The driver and the 3-wood is not in the bag today. So he is, like, all right, all right. Pinch-hit later on in the game or a little -- for a Judy hit. I said, there you go.

Today in BP it felt a lot better. I was able to, like, swing and actually get into my front foot. So I told him let's do it. I feel a lot more confident with it. I didn't feel that yesterday.

Q. (No microphone).

J.D. MARTINEZ: No. You know, honestly, I didn't. I think it was -- hitting is contagious, and these guys came out today raking right out the gate. So look at everybody. Everybody had a great night today. It wasn't just one person, I feel like.

Q. J.D., you tinker with your swing, your mechanics a lot. Did you have to change anything because of the ankle today and tonight in terms of stance, balance, weight shift, any of that? And if so, what did you have to do?

J.D. MARTINEZ: I think subconsciously I did. I think my mind kind of just, you know, changes the position you want to land just because you don't want to put that pressure on it and then torque that you were putting on it. That was one thing I was battling with yesterday. I was, like, I don't like how my front foot is landing right there. It's a spinny move.

So then today I was able to stick it, and it felt a lot better, and I was, like, yeah, okay, this can actually work today.

Q. J.D., obviously, kind of a freak thing that happened on Sunday. How frustrating is it for that to happen, you know, in game 162 and just a random thing? And secondly, if this was the regular season, would this be an IL thing or are you really pushing it into October?

J.D. MARTINEZ: Yeah, obviously, it was extremely frustrating for that to happen. For me to come out of that game, you know, you knew I was in pain. Very next pitch or that inning actually Alex Avila hit a ball down the right field line, and, I was like, I might not make it to this ball. But then coming in I told Alex and he is like, if you can't, you can't. You know? It's a big game. I'm going to hurt us more than I'm going to help us at that point.

What was the second part of your question?

Q. If it was an IL thing.

J.D. MARTINEZ: Talking to doctors, they said if it was during the season it was for sure a ten-day, but it's the playoffs, you know? You only get one chance at this.

Q. J.D., how hard is it not to kind of see any game action for four days and then to come in and get four hits like you did tonight?

J.D. MARTINEZ: I think the adrenaline takes over. You know? Honestly, I was kind of surprised that my timing was when it was because I was four, five days off and going out there and facing guys throwing 98, but that's where I think the situation and the adrenaline and the game and the fans kind of just take over and, you know, you just get caught up in the moment really.

Q. J.D., you mentioned that obviously hitting is contagious, so what can you say about what you guys were able to do today maybe differently from last night, even though you hit the ball pretty well in the first game?

J.D. MARTINEZ: I kind of understood a little bit of it.

Q. You mentioned that hitting is contagious, so what do you think you guys were able to do today differently from last night, although you hit the ball pretty well in Game 1?

J.D. MARTINEZ: Honestly, I felt like yesterday we hit the ball really hard. If you look at the game and you look at the outs, there's a lot of hard outs. I mean, you go back to Dalbec's line-out in the first inning right at the second baseman, then he comes up with a situation with guys on base, and he is hitting 105 right at the third baseman. There's a lot of things that kind of didn't go our way yesterday, and I felt like today they just -- the guys just carried into today and just better luck. Guys hit the ball hard from top to bottom our whole lineup did.

MODERATOR: Anything else for J.D.? All right, J.D. We'll excuse you. Congrats on a great night. Appreciate it. Have a safe trip back.

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