Red Sox give up on Blake Swihart in surprising release

The Red Sox’s sluggish start now has a surprising scapegoat.

Don’t worry, everyone from their MLB-worst rotation (7.18 ERA) is safe. Instead, the Red Sox designated catcher/utility man Blake Swihart for assignment on Tuesday before taking on the Yankees in The Bronx, WEEI first reported.

Swihart, 27, has long been one of Boston’s more puzzling players. The potential at the plate has always been there, but his defensive deficiencies made him difficult to play regularly. The Red Sox experimented with him at corner-outfield and infield positions when not serving as the backup catcher.

He was batting .231 with one home run in 26 at-bats this season. It’s considered unlikely he would pass through waivers and return to the Red Sox.

The Red Sox called up Sandy Leon to take Swihart’s place on the roster, and he will be catching Chris Sale on Tuesday night against the Yankees.

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