Swisher signs with In­di­ans

One-time Mariner Ibanez re­turns to Seat­tle with 1-year, $2.75 mil­lion deal.

Austin American-Statesman - - NFL -

The In­di­ans’ pitch to bring Nick Swisher “home” worked.

Two peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the ne­go­ti­a­tions said Swisher has agreed to a $56 mil­lion, four-year con­tract with the In­di­ans, who used the free agent out­fielder’s deep Ohio con­nec­tions to con­vince him to join the club. The peo­ple spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity Sun­day be­cause Swisher must take a phys­i­cal be­fore the deal can be fi­nal­ized. The In­di­ans are ex­pected to an­nounce Swisher’s sign­ing af­ter Christ­mas, one of the peo­ple said.

The In­di­ans will not com­ment un­til Swisher com­pletes his phys­i­cal.

“Wow! What a crazy few weeks,” Swisher said on Twit­ter. “Hey Cleve­land! Are you ready? Be­cause I’m coming home!”

Swisher’s deal in­cludes a $14 mil­lion op­tion for 2017 that could be­come guar­an­teed based on plate ap­pear­ances the pre­vi­ous year.

In­di­ans sec­ond base­man Ja­son Kip­nis was ex­cited about the club’s new­est ad­di­tion.

“Wel­come to the Tribe (at)nick­swisher, pumped to get ya,” Kip­nis tweeted.

The 32-year-old Swisher spent the last four sea­sons with the New York Yan­kees, tak­ing ad­van­tage of the short right-field porch at Yan­kee Sta­dium. A switch-hit­ter, Swisher hit .272 this sea­son with 24 homers and 93 RBIs.

Swisher will fill an out­field hole for the In­di­ans, who traded Shin-Soo Choo to Cincin­nati. Swisher will play right, with re­cently ac­quired Drew Stubbs likely tak­ing over in cen­ter with Michael Brantley shift­ing from cen­ter to left field.

Mariners: Raul Ibanez and Seat­tle agreed to a $2.75 mil­lion, oneyear con­tract, a per­son fa­mil­iar with the ne­go­ti­a­tions told The As­so­ci­ated Press.

The deal al­lows Ibanez to earn an ad­di­tional $1.25 mil­lion in per­for­mance bonuses, the per­son said, speak­ing on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause the agree­ment had not been an­nounced.

The out­fielder/des­ig­nated hit­ter re­turns to the team he be­gan his big league ca­reer with from 1996-00, then re­joined from 2004-08.

Ibanez, 40, spent the past sea­son with the Yan­kees. Ibanez hit .240 with 19 homers and 62 RBIs in 384 at-bats.

Reds: Ryan Freel, a former Ma­jor League Base­ball player known for his fear­less play but whose ca­reer was cut short af­ter eight sea­sons by a se­ries of head and other in­juries, was found dead Satur­day in Jack­sonville, Fla., ac­cord­ing to the Jack­sonville Sher­iff’s Of­fice.

Freel, who was 36, died of what ap­peared to be a self-in­flicted shot­gun wound, sher­iff’s of­fice spokesman Shan­non Hart­ley wrote in an email Sun­day. The med­i­cal ex­am­iner will make the fi­nal de­ter­mi­na­tion of the cause of death.

“RIP Ryan Freel!! Great team­mate, great guy,n loved his fam­ily!” former Cincin­nati Reds team­mate Sean Casey tweeted. “Such a sad day to­day with his pass­ing!Aw­ful news!Prayers are with his fam­ily!”

The speedy Freel spent six of his eight big league sea­sons with the Reds and fin­ished his ca­reer in 2009 with a .268 av­er­age.

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