Therefore, the Indians must be considered the front-runner to land Swisher this offseason.
A native of Columbus, Ohio, Swisher played his high school baseball in West Virginia before attending Ohio State University, where he came on strong as a big-hitting outfielder on the Buckeyes baseball team.
According to the Associated Press via ESPN, some prominent Buckeyes have joined forces with the Indians this December in an effort to land Swisher. Former Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel, current football coach Urban Meyer and basketball coach Thad Matta have all been encouraging Swisher to pick Cleveland.
But the Indians are front-runners in the chase to sign Swisher for more reasons than one. The most obvious one being that Cleveland has space to fill in right field. The 32-year-old would step in right away for the Indians and have an opportunity to contribute to a team with championship aspirations.
Swisher played in 148 regular season games for the New York Yankees last season, batting .272, going yard 24 times and recording 93 RBI.
Sure, the Indians have struggled over the years, but with a manager like Terry Francona on board, it's only a matter of time before Cleveland takes the next step.
Having Swisher inked to a long-term deal would ensure that the Indians have key pieces in place to make a run at the American League Central division, and eventually a World Series championship. But Swisher will have plenty of other things to think about aside from championship odds before making his decision.
Attention to detail and the ability to offer a unique opportunity is what sets the Indians apart from any other team in the race to acquire Nick Swisher this winter, and that's why Cleveland must be considered the front-runner to sign its hometown target.
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