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Kevin Youkilis on trade possibilities: ‘I’m a paid employee here’

06.23.12 at 4:10 pm ET

For the first time in his career, Red Sox corner infielder Kevin Youkilis is out of the lineup for a third straight game while healthy, the result of his struggles this year and the outstanding performance by rookie Will Middlebrooks. Youkilis discussed his playing situation, denied that manager Bobby Valentine had ever discussed it with him before telling the media that he would be “[riding] the hot hand” with Middlebrooks and addressed the rumors of a possible trade after 11 years in the Red Sox organization, including nine in the major leagues.

Here is a transcript of his remarks.

On trade rumors:

I have no thoughts on anything. I haven’€™t been told anything. Until I’€™m told anything, I can’€™t really respond.

On being out of lineup for three straight days while healthy:

You want to play. I definitely want to play. You want to play the game, you want to enjoy it and have fun. I don’€™t know my situation. I never was told what’€™s going on here. Let’€™s put that straight.

Was there a conversation with Bobby Valentine?

There was no conversation. And I’€™ll leave it at that. I don’€™t want to start up anything. There was no conversation, that was it. It has been addressed.

What does that mean?

Other things, with the speculation of this and that, it’€™s been addressed that I’€™m not playing today. Other than that, basically there was no conversation about it. I’€™m just coming in here, getting my work done, if I need to pinch hit and play the game, I’€™ll come in and play.

Who addresses it? You? Agent Joe Bick?

I’€™ll leave it at what was said.

What has it been like to sort out where you might be going?

It’€™s definitely different. You’€™ve just got to go day to day. It’€™s definitely unknown waters, but all you can do is come to the field, do your work, try to improve with going in the cage or going on the field and taking groundballs. ‘€¦ I did some extra work today, trying to do whatever I can to keep fresh.

How would you describe your time with the Red Sox?

You definitely had all the ups and downs. I probably could describe it to you 10 years down the road better. When you’€™re in it, you can’€™t really describe the stuff you’€™re in. Somebody is going to have to remind me ‘€¦ You’€™ve seen it all. To be continued, shall we say.

When taking batting practice, do you think, ‘€˜This could be it?’€™

No. I’€™m just trying to work on things, hit, stay fresh, get my work in. That’€™s my whole mindset coming to the field.

Are you getting closer offensively?

I don’€™t know. I went 2-for-3 my last time. But if you don’€™t play, I don’€™t know how much closer you can get. If you don’€™t hit, don’€™t play, you can’€™t put up many stats. I raked in the cage, if you want to know that. I was hitting missiles all over the plate, but you don’€™t get credit for that.

Is winning the World Series your highlight here?

Is this a goodbye thing? I’€™m just sitting here at my locker. I haven’€™t been told anything. Let’€™s talk about today. ‘€¦ I’€™m still here. I’€™m not dead.

Do you feel like your swing is where you want it?

I was hitting the ball good. In Chicago, too, I was hitting the ball good and had nothing to show for it. I’€™m definitely going in the right move. I’€™ve just got to keep working at it, keep grinding away.

What is the best-case scenario given how Will Middlebrooks has been playing?

I’€™m a paid employee here. They make the decisions with that. When you’€™re a paid employee and the boss tells you to do something, you do it. Until they tell me something, I’€™m here to play with the Red Sox.

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