October 9, 2021
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Tampa Bay Rays
Workout Day Press Conference
Q. Curious your thoughts of not only starting a postseason game -- I know you said a while ago it was something you would certainly look forward to if it presented itself -- but also doing it here.
DREW RASMUSSEN: Yeah, obviously Fenway, a really cool park, really cool opportunity that a lot of people don't get to experience. So I'm excited. Postseason baseball is what everyone plays for. To get the opportunity to do both in the same game, it's a really neat opportunity, and I'm extremely excited.
Q. Just curious, you faced this team quite a bit already this season, you pitched here. How much do you think that might help you heading into this start?
DREW RASMUSSEN: Like we've talked about over the past month and a half or so, I've thrown against him three or four times. There are no surprises. There are no secrets on either end. So it comes down to execution. I'd be shocked if their game plan against me or my game plan against them changes a whole lot from what we've done over the past couple of outings.
So it's going to be a dogfight tomorrow. We already know that. It's a quality team, and at the end of the day, it just comes down to executing.
Q. Two months ago you were making the transition out of the bullpen into the rotation. What do you feel that's allowed you to make that as relatively seamless as you have?
DREW RASMUSSEN: Very similar to a bullpen mindset where it's get ahead and try to put guys away quickly. I've been fortunate to have the ability to be pretty efficient in my outings. So it's something we're going to look to try and do again tomorrow.
Q. Obviously, you faced Boston a number of times, but what's impressed you the most about their quality of at-bats in the first two games of this series?
DREW RASMUSSEN: Postseason baseball is a little different animal than regular season baseball. Their ability with runners in scoring position to not strike out has been pretty impressive to me. You've seen guys cut down their swings and put the ball in play and try to hit the ball the other way against the shift at times.
You're taking some incredibly gifted, incredibly talented hitters, and they're fully wrapping their head around a team accomplishment. So like I said, they're not giving up at-bats. They're putting together great at-bats, and they're battling to put balls in play and not strike out.
Q. Do you have any specific memories of postseason baseball? I guess it would have been a while ago to go to a Mariners postseason game, but just a game you went to, you watched, you talked about with family and friends or anything?
DREW RASMUSSEN: The only postseason baseball games I've been to are last year with Milwaukee. Unfortunately, there were no fans when we were in L.A., but the atmosphere here will be a little bit different, a little bit more fun than what it was with the pumped-in crowd noise we got to play with last year.
Q. Being the dynamics of a five-game series being tied 1-1, do you try to push all that aside and take another-game mentality or realize it's a very decisive game, when you do the math, in a five-game series?
DREW RASMUSSEN: I think during the course of a season, you try to win every single game you play, and I don't think tomorrow's any different than what the last 162 were. On top of that, the last two we played against Boston at our place.
Like I said, you try to win every day when you show up no matter what time of year it is. I'm going to try to do my best to look at it that way. I know the feel of the postseason, it will probably be a little bit more adrenaline than what there normally is, but just going to try to look to minimize that to the best of my ability and actually use it to my advantage more than anything.
Q. Kind of off the beaten path, but I see you're from Puyallup?
DREW RASMUSSEN: Born in Puyallup, raised in Spokane.
Q. You never met Jon Lester?
DREW RASMUSSEN: Don't want to take any shots, some ricochets, but he's a little bit older than I am, and yeah, also he's from the west side, and I mostly grew up in Spokane.
Q. Drew, you're one of nine guys on the postseason roster, one of nine pitchers who's made his Rays debut this year. How strange is it that you guys have a playoff-caliber pitching staff that has that much turnover?
DREW RASMUSSEN: It just goes to show you the hard work that the organization's done to create depth. It's remarkable when you look at how there's just kind of a revolving door of pieces as guys get hurt or guys start to struggle a little bit, how the next man up always comes up and seems to have success.
Like I said, what the front office and the staff has done here to put together this team and use pieces in situations that help the player benefit as well as the team, it's been nothing but incredible.
Q. So many of you guys seem to really enjoy being with the Rays. Like how do you reconcile that with that idea of a revolving door? What happens culturally when there's so much turnover, it's still really everyone seems to be happy to be a Ray?
DREW RASMUSSEN: Well, fortunately, when you seem to be sent down or whatever the case is, you go and you're playing with a lot of familiar faces that you saw in the Big Leagues for one thing, but also kind of the stable guys who are here day in and day out, they do a great job of keeping the clubhouse light, keeping us confident, and having a lot of fun.
Our leaders, they're awesome. You show up to the park wanting to play for each other, and it's not about individual numbers. Your individual numbers will take care of themselves so long as you try and help the team win.
So I think that's kind of the culture that's been created in our clubhouse, and now everybody has bought into it, and that's what we thrive off trying to do.
Q. Are you pretty much rooting for Milwaukee over in the National League, and are you allowing yourself to wonder what it might be like to face those guys in the World Series?
DREW RASMUSSEN: I have a lot of friends in that clubhouse. I do love that organization, and I enjoyed my time there, although it was short. Yeah, I'd love to see them have success. It's a really cool city that I think a lot of people don't know about. I think it's a really great fan base. I think it's a really great stadium. So to get to play October, November baseball in that park, would be really cool.
They tend to pack the place out and tends to be loud. And when they sing "Roll out the Barrel" in the seventh inning, that's an atmosphere I don't think can be recreated.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports