Red Sox right fielder, Jason Vargas, tried desperately to stop it going out of play.
It's a good thing that he didn't.
The Red Sox were saved by an obscure rule, and a bounce that was even weird for Fenway Park. Tampa Bay fell 6-4 to the Red Sox on Sunday night thanks to Christian Vazquez's 13th-inning walk off homer. This victory moved the Red Sox one win away from the 100-win Rays in the AL Division Series.
Kike Hernandez, center fielder and Renfroe's back-up, said that "I was speechless." "I don’t know if you guys had seen that before. That's something I have never seen in my entire life.
"I was unsure what I would be called. I was not sure if runners would have to return. He said, "I had no idea." It went our way. You can call it home-field advantage, or whatever you like -- but it worked for us.
In the best-of-5 matchup, the wild-card Red Sox won 2-1. Game 4 will be played at Fenway on Monday, which is Marathon Day in Boston. Game 5 can be played in St. Petersburg, Florida on Wednesday if necessary.
Tampa Bay rallied to tie the game in the eighth, after a 4-2 deficit. It was still 4-all when YandyDiaz singled with one out.
The play began, and umpires were scrambling for the rulebook while the Rays scrambled to their feet.
Diaz was halfway between second and third when Kiermaier’s ball bounced off the 5-foot-high wall. If it had remained in play, he would have easily scored. The umpires met and conferred with the headsets, before giving Kiermaier a second and sending Diaz back up to third.
Baseball Rule 5.05(a),(8) states that "Any bounding fairball is deflected into the stands or over or under a fence in fair or foul territory by the fielder." In this case, the batter and all runners are entitled to move two bases.
Kiermaier stated, "If I stayed in second, that's fine." "But I was hoping Yandy would score, because he would have scored clearly. It was amazing that they were able to use it in their favor.
Kevin Cash, Rays manager, said that he had seen the replay and it was clear Renfroe did not intentionally knock it over the wall.
"That's the rule. This is how it works. He said that it was very unfortunate for them. "It was obvious that K.K. Yandy or K.K. was going to score, but it didn’t work out our way."
Sam Holbrook, chief umpire crew chief, said: "It is in the rulebook. It's a ground rule double. The umpires don't have any discretion."
He said, "There is no, 'He would've done that, would'."
Play resumed when Nick Pivetta struck Mike Zunino out to end the inning. He then ran off the mound in celebration.
Renfroe was the last to walk with one out in his bottom half. Then Vazquez struck the first pitch of Luis Patino's over the Green Monster to bring it to an end.
Each of Hernandez and Kyle Schwarber had three hits for Boston, including a homer.
Hernandez scored seven runs in the series, scoring the first run, the third run and the fifth. In Boston's Game 2 win Hernandez went 5 for 6, with a home run, three doubles and a triple. He became the first Red Sox player to have four extra-base hits during a postseason game.
Nate Eovaldi, Red Sox's ace, allowed Austin Meadows to score two runs in the top of the first. Schwarber scored the winning run in the bottom half. Boston led 4-2 with Hernandez's fifth-inning homer, but the Rays pulled it back in the eighth when Wander Franco struck a solo homer. Meadows and Randy Arozarena then doubled.
Garrett Whitlock struck out Zunino in the final inning.
J.D. was able to put a runner on the first baseman in the 10th. Martinez fouled off five pitches and hit two strikes. Then, he hit one straightaway to center. Kiermaier scored it right in front the 379-foot marker. (The wind was blowing.
Arozarena stole second in the 11th and was caught in a rundown while trying to get to third. But he managed to scramble back to the bag without incident. Pivetta struck out Zunino, and Jordan Luplow to end his inning.
Boston had a runner at first in the 11th, when Hernandez hit a pitch into the hole between short- and third base. Franco went to his right and fielded it. Then, he made a long throw that Luplow, the first baseman picked up from the dirt for the third.
Schwarber, who was a major player in the Cubs' 2016 World Series title, homered in the wild card game against the Yankees. He also singled in the third and scored when Boston scored two runs to chase Drew Rasmussen. This gave Boston a 3-2 lead. Before leaving, he singled in the ninth.
Schwarber made an error in third inning when he lobbed Nathan Eovaldi the ball on a grounder. Schwarber was then tested on a similar play in the fourth inning.
He raised his arms in celebration and gave a fist pump. Then he tipped his cap to the cheering crowd. Schwarber looked toward the dugout, then laughed.
Rays: Arozarena fell on his way to second base with his eighth-inning double. He then limped into dugout as the Red Sox changed pitchers. He remained in the game.
Red Sox: RHP Hansel Robles seemed to be in discomfort after striking out Diaz for his second out in the eighth. He sighed, stretched his shoulder and then surrendered Arozarena’s double to tie the score 4-4.
The teams will play again Monday night with the starting pitchers yet to be determined. Nick Pivetta was expected to start for Boston, Patino for Rays. However, both pitchers pitched in Game 3. Alex Cora, Red Sox manager, stated that Eduardo Rodriguez would be the most likely candidate.
Bills' Emmanuel Sanders had two TD catches. Dawson Knox received 117 yards and the other one.
"We're going enjoy it on our return flight. It's obvious that I enjoy it out there, I can hear my voice screaming," Sanders stated. "But at the same, it's still not like we won Super Bowl." It's Week 5. It's Week 5. We must get back to work.
Mahomes ended with 272 yards of passing and two touchdowns, along with two interceptions (and a lost fumble) -- three of the four turnovers for his team. Mahomes was also the Chiefs' leading rusher (2-3) as the team struggled to offensively overcome a tough Buffalo defense.
Clyde Edwards -Helaire, running back, suffered a knee injury in the second period. Travis Kelce was also forced to leave in the final minutes of the match after sustaining a head injury from an incomplete pass.
The Chiefs were down to 21-20 in the fourth quarter, when Rashad Fenton intercepted Allen's pass via a third-down jump ball at midfield. However, Chiefs defensive end Frank Clark was cited for roughing the passer. The Bills were given the ball and a new set of downs and marched downfield to score the winning touchdown.
"We know that we have the ability to succeed. Mahomes stated that we have many great players who have also been very successful elsewhere. "We know that we have what is required. It's about coming together and finding a way.
Since January, when the Chiefs beat Buffalo to reach the Super Bowl, the game was hotly anticipated. This was mainly because the game promised to showcase two of the AFC’s most talented offenses in prime-time.
Kansas City's problem? It also has the worst defenses.
It was obvious long before L'Jarius Sneed blew cover on a 35 yard touchdown pass to Emmanuel Sanders, which gave Buffalo a 14-10 lead. Daniel Sorensen also blew coverage of a Stefon Diggs pass from 61 yards to Stefon Sanders that led to a field goal. Or when the safety covered Dawson Knox, a tight end that led to a 53-yard touchdown reception.
Allen completed only seven passes in the first period. They ran for 219 yards and scored two touchdowns.
Andy Reid, Chiefs coach, said that the Chiefs were embarrassed by their defensive performance. "We need to improve."
At halftime, the Chiefs trailed only 24-13. The lightning lit up the sky, sending fans scrambling for the concourses. After warming up, the Bills were pulled from the field after an hour.
When the game was finally resuming, things didn't get much better for Kansas City.
After they traded punts Mahomes tossed a bullet which bounced off Tyreek Hill's hand and straight to Hyde who only had mushy green fields in front of it. It was returned 26 yards by Mahomes, his first pick-six of the season.
On their next possession, the Chiefs drove quickly into the Buffalo red zone. But Mahomes threw an interception that Greg Rousseau blasted at the line. It was intercepted by the rookie defensive end.
Hyde stated, "We knew that we were going to take some hits coming out." "We had to weather every storm. Literally. We were able do that. The second half was a great success. We learned some important lessons that helped us get over the line.
Josh Gordon, Chiefs wide receiver, was activated for the first-time. After his sixth suspension, the NFL allowed him to sign late last month. Gordon was penalized for offensive pass interference after he also caught a pass for 11 yards.
After being tackled by Chiefs' Edwards Helaire following a screen pass at 8:08 in the third quarter, Edwards-Helaire suffered a left knee injury. After back-to-back 100 yard rushing games, he finished with 13 yards.
On Oct. 18, the Bills will play at Tennessee in primetime.
Next Sunday, the Chiefs will travel to Washington.