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Indians are showing interest in outfielder Nick Swisher

Indians are showing interest in outfielder Nick Swisher
November 26, 2012
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According to Ken Rosenthal ofFoxSports.com, he says the Indians have been checking in on several free agents, and one of those is free agent outfielder/first baseman Nick Swisher. 

Swisher, 32, hit .272 with 24 HR, 93 RBI, and .837 OPS in 148 games with the Yankees last season. He is a switch-hitter and his versatility to play either first base or a corner outfield position would fill a need at either position. 

Swisher was born in Columbus, OH before moving to Parkersburg, WV and attended high school there before he returned to Ohio to play baseball at Ohio State University. The Indians do not necessarily have the financial pull to outbid other teams, but it would be sort of a homecoming for him and he reportedly is very fond of new manager Terry Francona. 

Swisher is looking for a four year deal this offseason, but eventually may have to settle for three years. He is expected to sign for about $11-13M per season. Such a deal would push the Indians to their financial limits, but they have made similar deals in the past for $11M+ a season, most notably Jake Westbrook and Travis Hafner.

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User Comments

pepe grande
November 30, 2012 - 2:22 AM EST
I have watched Swisher live in Oakland and N.Y. Very streaky and when he's bad, he's worthless and painful to watch. Not a great fielder, maybe a role player for a contender, but not an everyday option for the Indians. Go young and build.
Tony
November 27, 2012 - 4:41 PM EST
The likelihood is that any good FA connected to the Indians will not sign. Always has been the case. Goes back to the days of the Era of Champions in the 90s too. They always just missed on the good FAs like Roger Clemens, Alex Fernandez, etc, and instead signed the likes of Dwight Gooden et al. Every once in awhile they made a noteworthy signing, like the Robbie Alomar one.....and like the Kerry Wood one from a few years ago (where they had to significantly overpay him to land him). We will see what happens this offseason. I'm optimistic they will make a few noteworthy moves....maybe not to the degree of Swisher....but a multi-year deal or two.
Jack
November 27, 2012 - 4:08 PM EST
Seth, I don't disagree with you and I don't doubt the Indians will talk to him, but realistically, based on past history (recent and distant) it's highly unlikely he wears an Indians- uni.

skydancing; at what point did anybody say they shouldn't try? That clearly isn't the same as saying they won't get it done. Of course they should try - but as I said, history says it's not going to happen.
Jim
November 27, 2012 - 2:53 AM EST
Skydancing...

Of course the Indians should "try." The key to that is always going to be, "are they really trying?"

The Indians HAVE to get a player they are "trying" to get...that's the key...and not for the fans, but for the team to actually improve. It would also help with regards to the "debbie downer" morale that we see from year-to-year.

There really needs to be some wins here...
Scooter
November 26, 2012 - 11:48 PM EST
God no!
Skydancing8
November 26, 2012 - 11:45 PM EST
Some of you guys really are depressing to listen to. Just because the team is unlikely to sign a player like Swisher means they shouldn't try? Then when they invite a bunch of minor league contract players to camp they didn't try to do anything. So which way is it going to be?
Jim
November 26, 2012 - 4:36 PM EST
This would be a great get...and if the name is out there, perhaps we'll get to see the change in mentality of the front office...if not with Swisher...then someone else. The Indians have been "in play" before this offseason, and I think you'll see them in play for more players...

Of course...as all have alluded to...the change in approach will be the gets...
Seth
November 26, 2012 - 2:03 PM EST
Jack, the Rays extension of Longoria shows a changing payroll landscape in MLB. Teams like the Indians and Rays can (and need to if they want to stay relevant) extend their own stars and be players for mid-tier free agents like Swisher. When you're receiving about $50 million/year in national TV revenue alone, it makes longer-term contracts considerably less scary. It also means that the value of all MLB franchises has increased a lot. Everyone thinks Dolan overpaid for the team and couldn't get his money back, and that's nonsense. The Indians may have slid in value relative to the other MLB teams since he bought, but the value of all MLB franchises has increased drastically because of the massive TV revenue flowing into the sport.

The Indians need to be in play for guys like Swisher. Talking to him and closing a deal are completely different things of course ... they talked to Beltran last year too. But they should be talking to Swisher, Victorino, Cody Ross, even BJ Upton, otherwise they will fall further behind the curve.
Roger
November 26, 2012 - 12:58 PM EST
he is a left handed throwing switch hiter so being lefty helps at first base there are a lot of plusses to being left handed first baseman the runner for one has to stay half step closer to the bag cause the tag is half step quicker. and swisher is not a bad outfield either and he may want first base to possibly elongate career his dad being a catcher may council him on the plusses to 1b from longevity basis.
Jack
November 26, 2012 - 12:55 PM EST
I'm interested in buying a Ferrari, but it's never going to happen. Ditto the Indians and Swisher.
Seth
November 26, 2012 - 12:32 PM EST
That is surprising. I would think there would be some better value guys available, Switcher's kind of old. If they're going to pay him, they might as well go hard after BJ Upton instead. If Switcher's contract does end up being in the 3 year $33 million range then that is a good deal though, I figured Victorino would be around $10 million per, and Swisher's been the better player the last couple years. They could also use Swisher at 1b though. That magic versatility. Actually I've talked myself into it, go after Swisher.
Tony
November 26, 2012 - 11:36 AM EST
I know there are a lot of cynics out there, and rightly so. I'm not sure this is a case where the Indians are just throwing a name out there. He is one of the better free agents that they have a legit interest in. Does that mean he will be signed? No. But the interest is real, and where it goes from there we will see. I'd put it at 25% the Indians actually sign him. If he gets four years then no way, but if he gets three years for around $11M then I could see interest intensifying.
Dennis
November 26, 2012 - 10:52 AM EST
Well, matt, that may be true, as Ken Rosenthal needs to gather as much political clout as possible so he can be on the inside when / if Swisher does sign elsewhere. In your opinion, the idea that a story is leaked for the amusement of the front office and, later, so as to provide alleged evidence that the Indians FO tried is pretty cynical.
matt underwood
November 26, 2012 - 10:37 AM EST
Is this even news worthy?

This is the obligatory "story" leaked by the front office as so they may cite Nick Swisher when asked in March about the lack of professional hitters/pitchers on the team. Just like Beltran a year ago, gives Antonetti an out to say... "hey, we tried". I am sure they are kicking the tries on Grienke and Hamilton too. It seems as though this organization wants credit for simply being in the conversation.

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