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October 9, 2021

Nathan Eovaldi

Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Fenway Park

Boston Red Sox

Workout Day Press Conference

Q. Nate, you have started a number of Game 3s in postseason series. What do you remember about Game 3 in the ALDS in 2018, the first one?

NATHAN EOVALDI: I mean, I remember against the Yankees, going out there and great atmosphere, everything like that. I remember Brock hitting for the cycle that game. That was awesome.

Q. When you are entering a 1-1 series, how do you view the significance of Game 3?

NATHAN EOVALDI: Game 3's huge. If we win tomorrow, then we need one more and we're going to be at home. So having split the series over there in Tampa 1-1 and then having the opportunity to take it here again in Boston, it's huge for us.

You saw the atmosphere we had when the Yankees were in town, the electricity in the stadium, and the fan support, it was awesome. Having them to push us along the way, it's going to be great.

Q. Maybe over a couple postseasons now, you've kind of developed a reputation as a guy who comes through in those spots, including the other night. How much do you love pitching this time of year?

NATHAN EOVALDI: I love it. It's my favorite time of the year. For us to be in this situation, we've had to fight and battle the whole time to be able to get here and be in this situation. We've had a lot of guys step up to be able to help us out, and I want to be able to continue that and help the team any way I can.

I love pitching in these moments and against teams like the Rays. It's going to be a challenge. It's going to be fun.

Q. What kind of brings out the best in you in these situations, do you think? Is there a different focus level or intensity that helps you take it to another level?

NATHAN EOVALDI: Everything. I feel like you're definitely a little more locked in, you're more focused. I like facing tough opponents, and the Rays, they've got a great lineup up and down. They make you battle out there. They're not going to give you a free out. They're running the bases hard, things like that.

The energy and the atmosphere too. Being in the stadium, the fans are locked in from the first pitch on. To be able to battle in those games, it's a lot of fun. The energy throughout the dugout, everybody's locked in and contributing.

Q. You mentioned the difficulty of getting to this point in the season. You obviously know Alex from the before times. In your eyes, what has he done to help you guys as a group get through COVID and roster churn? And how would you describe this year, what you've done to get to this point?

NATHAN EOVALDI: His leadership, I think, says it all. Any time we start to -- whether we're losing focus or we're kind of falling off, he rights the ship, gets us back online, gets us back on track.

I think yesterday's game was a perfect example of that. With Sale having struggles in the first inning. We're taking the lead at the beginning of the game, up 2-0. They answered back and put up five, now we're down by three. He kept saying, we've got eight innings left. We've got to score three more runs to be back in this thing. Keep battling away. Keep chipping away.

With COVID and the outside distractions with COVID, and we've got to really rely on our families and everybody to kind of stay together as a group. That's what our motto has been from the very beginning. We're a family inside the clubhouse. All of our family is outside, and we all have to be together. We're not going to get through this if we're not all on the same page.

Everybody bought in early, and I think that helped us get to this point.

Q. In 2018, you obviously established yourself as an elite postseason pitcher, but Alex has described the fact that you've evolved a lot or better, much better since then as a pitcher. What ways would you say that you have evolved as a pitcher since '18?

NATHAN EOVALDI: I think just the pitch ability. I've got five different pitches now that I'm throwing for strikes, as opposed to then it was really three or four. I think battling throughout a game, being able to adjust on the fly through a game, that's helped me out a lot too. And just my mechanics, being able to, if I have a bad outing, I can fix it for the next one and be ready to go from that point on.

Q. How would you describe who Xander is in the clubhouse at this point? What it's been seeing him over the course of these Four Seasons?

NATHAN EOVALDI: He's a great teammate. He's our top leader in the clubhouse. He communicates with everybody. He came up in '13. He's got two World Series championships. He's got experience. He's one of the guys who he's always healthy, always on the field. I think it says a lot about a player if they're able to stay healthy and stay consistent the entire time he's been up in the Big Leagues.

Obviously he's one of biggest our leaders. He's a great teammate to have. You always pull for him, and he's always pulling for you. It's great.

Q. How would you describe your demeanor on the mound? And do you see yourself as being in some ways kind of an intimidating presence? Is there an impetus behind trying to be intimidating?

NATHAN EOVALDI: I don't know if I'm trying to be intimidating out there. I'm going out there and trying to attack. Hopefully, I guess that makes it a little more intimidating. For me, I'm trying to attack the strike zone. I'm trying not to give in, trying not to show too much emotions out there, whether it's good or bad. I like to try to keep it the same, even though I've got a lot of energy out there.

I felt like I showed a little bit more in the dugout after an outing. Just that attack, I try to have that the entire time. You have to stay attacking the guys. You start to fall behind or give in a little bit, you're not going to have any self doubt. We put in so much work to be here at this point, for guys -- everybody works on their craft all day.

We come to the field. It's nutrition. It's studying the game. It's you studying your mechanics, things like that. I don't want to take anything for granted. So I put everything I got out there.

Q. This is a follow-up, I guess, to what Chris just asked. Gerrit Cole was asked before his start here who he is before the game, if he's a guy who is in the clubhouse basically you can't approach him or if you're just sort of you? What about yourself?

NATHAN EOVALDI: I'm super relaxed in the clubhouse. I'm talking to everybody. If they want to come up and talk to me, they can. Obviously, we're not joking around with each other too much because it is game day and things like that.

My routine, I'm usually in the training room by 5:00. Really up until I go outside -- I don't know. I think I'm approachable the entire time. I'm pretty even keel.

Q. Nate, as you get ready to face this Rays lineup, is there anything you can learn about the previous meetings you've had against them, and more specifically, that September matchup?

NATHAN EOVALDI: Yeah, I don't want to tip my hand too much. I've got a pretty good plan of attack. I feel like the first two games they've come out swinging definitely. They kind of set the tone right away. Again, once they get on the basepaths, they're aggressive on the basepaths. They're going to try to take advantage of everything, any little mishaps. Obviously, we have to control the running game really well against these guys.

Again, I keep saying it, but just keep attacking them. Try not to let them have any predictable counts where they're going to be in control and keep them out of the game as much as possible.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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