The Red Sox likely didn’t need any added motivation for their American League Division Series against the Rays, but they received it.
Boston completed an upset Monday night, eliminating Tampa Bay from the 2021 Major League Baseball playoffs and advancing to the AL Championship Series in the process. During an interview with MLB Network after his team’s Game 4 win at Fenway Park, Alex Verdugo revealed how the Rays poured more fuel onto the Red Sox’s fire.
“We were fired up, man. We did it,” Verdugo said. “We went out here, we battled this team all year. They beat us in the standings and took the division. So to come back here and beat them when it really matters, you know, after a couple things, man. Seeing them eat popcorn in the dugout, hearing that they ordered champagne already to Boston to celebrate. It was just little things that kind of, you know, they’re throwing jabs out, man. Really, we’re just happy to send them home.”
The Rays now will watch from home as the Red Sox move forward with their postseason run. Verdugo and Co. return to the field Friday for Game 1 of the ALCS, where they’ll meet either the Houston Astros or the Chicago White Sox.