FORT MYERS, Fla (CBS) — Blake Swihart was back in the Red Sox lineup Thursday, one day after his younger brother passed away unexpectedly.
Swihart, hitting in the six-spot as Boston’s DH in their exhibition game against the Washington Nationals, went 1-for-2 with an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth inning. He was lifted for a pinch-runner after driving in Juan Soto with his line-drive single to left, leaving the field to applause from fans and his Red Sox teammates.
Boston manager Alex Cora gave Swihart a hug when he reached the Boston dugout.
Swihart also made the day of a young fan down at JetBlue Park, having him his bat:
Swihart was slated to play Wednesday but was a late scratch after his adoptive brother, Romell Jordan, died suddenly at the age of 23. Following Wednesday’s exhibition games, Cora said that Swihart wanted to be back in the lineup come Thursday.
“He feels that being around his teammates right now is good for him, he feels like whenever he has to go, he’ll go, but not right now,” Cora told reporters. “He’s here with his wife and around the guys so he feels like, why not? Whatever he wants to do. I told him, ‘Dude, whatever you want to do [Thursday]. If you want to play, you play. If you don’t want to play…’ He kind of like said, ‘My brother would probably love me to show up and play’ so he might DH [Thursday].”