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Swihart staying positive despite trade request

MLB.com @IanMBrowne

BOSTON -- Seldom-used Blake Swihart is keeping a positive attitude amid a report that his agent asked the Red Sox to trade him.

"I think it was kind of looking out for me," said Swihart. "That's his job. I just want to let everyone know I'm still here, I'm focused on being here. I'm going to work my tail off to keep doing what I can do to help this team win."

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BOSTON -- Seldom-used Blake Swihart is keeping a positive attitude amid a report that his agent asked the Red Sox to trade him.

"I think it was kind of looking out for me," said Swihart. "That's his job. I just want to let everyone know I'm still here, I'm focused on being here. I'm going to work my tail off to keep doing what I can do to help this team win."

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Swihart didn't ask the Red Sox to trade him, nor will he.

"That's not my job to do that. I would never go to them and do that. No, I haven't talked to them about it," Swihart said.

Agent Brodie Scoffield did tell Swihart what his plan was before talking to the Red Sox.

"He told me beforehand that he was going to do it, so he's looking out for me," Swihart said.

At the moment, Swihart is the 25th man on the Red Sox's roster, and an insurance policy behind catchers Christian Vazquez and Sandy Leon.

When Dustin Pedroia returns from the disabled list -- which will likely take place within the next couple of weeks -- the Red Sox might have to make a move with Swihart, who doesn't have Minor League options.

"He's probably been thinking about a bunch of things that can happen in the next couple of weeks," Swihart said of his agent. "I want to play. He wants me to play. That's what he decided to do."

Prior to Wednesday's game against the Athletics -- for which Swihart was not in the lineup -- manager Alex Cora praised the switch-hitter for his attitude.

"Showing up every day, working hard like always," Cora said. "Communication with me has been outstanding. I have no complaints."

Swihart has started just four of the first 43 games of the season, all at designated hitter. This, despite the fact he got playing time during Spring Training at catcher, first base, second base, third base and left field.

"I think about it everyday, 'How are we going to do this?'" Cora said. "I've said it from the get-go, that it was honestly the toughest part of the job early -- how are we going to do this? It's tough to do it. Whenever it comes down to him playing the outfield or DH'ing, I honestly run it through J.D. [Martinez] first.

"I say, 'What would you rather do? Do you want to DH or do you want to play left?' You guys know the answer. It's nothing against Blake, but J.D., he likes to play the outfield. Whenever we have the chance and we have options, we will check with him and if he wants to play the outfield then Blake will DH."

Cora feels his relationship with Swihart has been honest and healthy.

"We talk," said Cora. "He's ready to play. He knows that when he doesn't play, we might need him late in games, so he goes in and takes his hacks and he's engaged in the game. We talk about the game. It's the situation he's in, you know?

"Honestly, he's part of the big league ballclub and he understands his role. His agent, I guess you know, he expressed his feelings, but he's not the only big leaguer [to want a trade] -- and first of all, I haven't heard it from Blake, and second, it's been an ongoing talk of players asking for trades or whatever throughout the year. [J.T] Realmuto and [Josh] Harrison and [David] Freese, and the last time I checked, Harrison and Freese are very happy with their team.

"So it is what it is, you know? But he works, man. He shows up and he knows in advance when he's going to play. I let him know the night before and he's ready to roll."

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.

Boston Red Sox, Blake Swihart