Way back on November 29 of last year, I wrote a piece looking forward to the 2011-2012 Hot Stove season. On the list of possibly expiring contracts was fan favorite, Nick Swisher.
Like Cano, Nick Swisher has an option for the 2012 season ($10.25MM) with a $1MM buy out. The OF FA class of 2012 doesn’t look particularly strong and Swisher’s got a skill set that should age well. He’s also gotten himself into very good shape and doesn’t have a body that is likely to break down. I’d bet on the Yankees picking up that relatively cheap option and keeping Nick on patrol in YSIII’s right field.
“I don’t want to leave New York,” Swisher said. “This is the place to be. I love it. I absolutely love it… Meeting my wife, and Kevin Long, and the city of New York just completely resurrected my career.”
Since day one, Nick Swisher has fit in with the Yankees in every way possible. His personality supposedly helped loosen up the Yankee clubhouse; that same personality has made him a hit with the media and the fans, and most importantly, his performance on the field has been fantastic. Since joining the Bombers in 2009, Swisher’s hit to a .376 wOBA and has been worth 7.4 fWAR (7.7 bWAR).
Unless he absolutely tanks, or gets viciously injured, I’ll stick to the prediction I made back in November. Swisher will be 31 for the 2012 season so he won’t be too old and $10.25MM is a relatively affordable option. The list of outfield free agents is long, but pretty thin. Carlos Beltran, J.D. Drew, David DeJesus, and Grady Sizemore are on the list, but three of them are health risks and DeJesus doesn’t represent any sort of an upgrade over Nick Swisher; in fact, he’s more or less a downgrade. All signs point to Nick Swisher sticking around through 2012.