Nick Swisher Agrees to Four-Year Pact with Tribe
The Cleveland Indians and free-agent outfielder Nick Swisher have agreed on a four-year, $56 million contract, including a vesting option for 2017 based on plate appearances.
The deal would give Swisher another $14 million in 2017 if he reaches the required plateau in the 2016 season, pushing the deal's value to $70 million.
The contract is pending a physical and is not expected to be officially announced by Indians until after the holiday.
"Wow! What a crazy few weeks," the outfielder wrote on his Twitter account, @NickSwisher. "Hey Cleveland! Are you ready? Because I'm coming home!"
With Swisher on board, the Indians have completed their outfield together with Drew Stubbs and Michael Brantley.
The Indians, trying to put their 94-loss season behind, have brought in some key pieces for the upcoming season, including new manager Terry Francona, new first baseman in slugger Mark Reynolds and a top-flight pitching prospect via trade in Trevor Bauer.
Last week, the Indians gave Swisher a superstar treatment during his return to Cleveland. The outfielder was born in Columbus, Ohio and played baseball at Ohio State.
Swisher met with Francona, team president Mark Shapiro, team CEO Paul Dolan and other club executives.
The Indians also had former Ohio State University football coach Jim Tressel on hand to try to help sway Swisher to bring his family to the Buckeye State.
The 32-year-old Swisher can provide some veteran leadership to a relatively young roster, taking some pressure off of Cleveland's up-and-coming players.
Last season, the switch-hitting Swisher hit .272 with 24 homers, 36 doubles and 93 RBIs in 148 games for the New York Yankees.
He also posted a .364 on-base percentage and a .473 slugging percentage. Swisher has hit at least 23 home runs in five straight seasons and he has collected at least 80 RBIs four years in a row.
During his four years in the Bronx, the switch-hitting Swisher posted a .268/.367/.483 slash line with an average of 26 home runs and 87 RBIs per season.
Over his nine-year career in the big leagues -- spent with the A's, White Sox and Yankees -- Swisher hit .256 with a .361 on-base percentage and a .467 slugging percentage.
Swisher earlier turned down a one-year qualifying contract offer from New York worth $13.3 million in order to test free agency this winter. By turning down the offer, the Yankees secured a compensation pick in next June's First-Year Player Draft.
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