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October 10, 2021

Kevin Kiermaier

Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Fenway Park

Tampa Bay Rays

Postgame 3 Press Conference

Red Sox 6, Rays 4

KEVIN KIERMAIER: Yeah, man, I'm just in awe right now. That's the ruling. The umpires explained it to me. So I can't go against that. The rules are what they are. But, man, that's a heartbreaker. I can't believe that happened or we don't get the chance to score right there.

Man, for one, I crushed that ball. I was just hoping to see it leave the yard. I got a lot of snap and crackle with no pop, first and foremost. And for that to happen right there, it just doesn't make sense to me, but the ruling is what it is.

Greg Gibson explained to me that, if the outfielder doesn't intentionally do that, it's a ground-rule double. It's hard for me to -- it would have put us in a much bigger situation, put the pressure on them there in the 13th inning, but for the ball to bounce off the wall and then hit a player and go over again, I just can't believe that is a ground-rule double.

I mean, Yandy would have scored standing up. It's a heartbreaker, plain and simple.

Q. To follow with that, I know the situation you're now in, you guys had such grand expectations and on the brink of elimination going into tomorrow night's game. What's your sense of that?

KEVIN KIERMAIER: We've got to put our big boy pants on and just come out and do everything in our power to try to win a ballgame.

I would say that with 100 wins, there's other teams that faced a little more adversity than us throughout the season, and we always bounce back. For the times that we did have our backs against the wall here or there through stretches in the season, eight-game losing streak, stuff like that, and I told the guys after the game when we got back to the clubhouse, if there's any team who can do it, it's us. You have to believe that and come out ready to win a ballgame tomorrow and do whatever it takes.

Plain and simple as well. Just take the loss tonight, accept it, move on, and do everything in our power to get locked in and try to win a game and take Game 5 back to the Trop.

Q. KK, what was your reaction as you are running into third there? It seemed more shock than anything to get the ruling.

KEVIN KIERMAIER: As I was going in there, I thought Yandy was going to score. I was optimistic about that. At that time, the rule wasn't explained to me. Once I put two and two together, I'm thinking to myself wait, that ball hit off the wall and hit off Renfroe and went over it. We have to get rewarded for more than just a ground-rule double.

I didn't care. If I stayed on second, that's fine. But I was hoping to see that Yandy scored because he would have easily obviously, but once again, the rules are in place. I can't sit here and go against those. It's incredible that it worked out to their advantage just like that.

I played with Hunter, and he's having such a remarkable year offensively and defensively, and everything he does is just turned into gold out there. Give that man the Gold Glove, and for a play like that to happen -- it might have been panic mode after the play because I'm sure he didn't know what the rule was. It ended up working out for them, unfortunately for us, but it is what it is.

Q. It's a little unfair because you guys lost the game. This was a great baseball game to watch. Was it a great game to play in? I'm sure it's tense, but was it fun? Was it thrilling? Was it nerve-racking?

KEVIN KIERMAIER: It's incredible to be a part of. Obviously, we would have loved to have it go our way, be a lot more -- might be in a little bit better mood right now, but that's a great question by you. That is an atmosphere playing here at Fenway in a huge, huge game with a great crowd, great atmosphere, this is what it's all about. This is what you play for.

Games like tonight, we'll remember it forever. Once again, it's unfortunate it didn't go our way, but this is great for our game to have games like these. They were a swing better than us tonight when it comes down to it.

What a great game to be a part of. I'm proud to take that field with these guys and playing such a good team over there. This is what it's all about.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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