Blake Swihart Plays in Spring Training Game after Death of Brother
Boston, MA– In the spring training Grapefruit League sessions this past week, the Boston Red Sox snapped their three game losing streak with a 13-5 win over the Washington Nationals that included a barrage of home runs from Michael Chavis, Jackie Bradley, Jr., Rafael Devers, and Brock Holt. But this matchup was so much more than a game. This exhibition duel between the Sox and the Nationals was about family.
Last week, after longtime Red Sox beat writer and Boston Globe columnist Nick Cafardo passed away, Alex Cora spoke with the media in a heartfelt way and shared stories of his own loved ones lost. He said that everyone involved with the Red Sox is working towards the same goal and the loss of Cafardo is not lessened because he was a part of the media. He talked about what it means to lose and to grieve and about how special Cafardo was to everyone he knew, especially his family.
Sadly, Cora had to make similar remarks this past week in a very solemn and somber moment as the Red Sox team seemed clearly shaken by a loss that impacted the clubhouse. It later was revealed that Romell Jordan, the brother of Boston catcher Blake Swihart, had died at the age of twenty-three. Swihart was a healthy scratch from the lineup so he could be with his family and the Red Sox requested privacy for the Swihart family during this time.
However, Swihart came back for the Nationals game after remarking in an Instagram post that Romell Jordan would have been upset if Swihart had not played in the game, regardless of its importance. It's expected that Swihart will take more time off to be with his family, but he did rope an RBI single in the game, which resulted in a very emotional moment in the dugout with Cora and his teammates.
It's a testament to how close knit this group is, in the sense that the organization from the top down came together to support Swihart. Players like Mookie Betts and David Price remarked about how the team sticks together no matter what. It was inspiring to see the team rally around Swihart and Jordan like that. They're family.