Kiermaier takes responsibility for third out at 3rd

Kiermaier takes responsibility for third out at 3rd

ST. PETERSBURG -- Kevin Kiermaier took full blame for his baserunning blunder in the fourth inning of Sunday's 5-3 season-opening loss to the Jays, which proved to be a tough mistake considering the way Toronto starter Marcus Stroman was pitching.

With two outs in the fourth and the Rays trailing 3-1, Hank Conger drew a walk, which would have put runners at first and second. But Kiermaier tried to steal third on ball four, and Jays catcher Russell Martin alertly threw to Josh Donaldson, who placed the tag on Kiermaier for the third out.

Kiermaier didn't hesitate to take the blame.

"Honestly, the way Donaldson was playing off the bag, I just thought they were giving it to me," Kiermaier said. "I didn't think they were going to attempt to throw. I took a look a couple of other times, and it just looked like they weren't interested in what I was doing.

"Terrible baserunning move on my part. Very embarrassing. I know the game better than that. But when you assume certain things like that, I just assumed they were going to let me have the bag. Didn't happen, and terrible baseball move on my part."

Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.