Swarzak Added On Minor League Deal
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The Cleveland Indians have signed 29-year old right handed reliever Anthony Swarzak to a minor league contract which includes an invitation to spring training.
As noted by the Indians Twitter account (HERE) Swarzak is second in MLB in relief innings since 2012 and has spent his entire career as a member of the division rival Minnesota Twins.
According to Mike Berardino’s of the St. Paul Pioneer Press’ Twitter Account (HERE & HERE) Swarzak will earn $900K if he makes the big league roster with an additional $350K in incentives based on appearances and innings pitched. He’ll receive $35K for 30, 35, 40, 45, and 50 games and innings pitched. The contract also contains and opt-out clause of September 1st.
Last season he appeared in 50 games (four starts) for the Twins posting a record of 3-2 with a 3.60 ERA (44 ER/86 IP) striking out 4.9 batters per nine innings, walking 2.9 batters per nine innings, and had a groundball rate of 44.5%. His FIP was only 3.77 but his xFIP (FIP adjusted to league average HR/FB%) was 4.57.
His most promising season was 2013 when he appeared in 48 games (all in relief) and posted a 3-2 record with a 2.91 ERA (31ER/96IP) with a strikeout per nine rate of 6.5, a walk per nine rate, and a groundball rate of 45.2%. His FIP was only 3.28 and his xFIP was 3.81.
The Cleveland Indians under manager Tito Francona are no stranger to using an eight man bullpen. With the uncertain health status of Brandon Moss and/or Nick Swisher and with the starers not being fully stretched out it wouldn’t be a surprise if the Tribe opened the year with the extra arm in the pen.
Swarzak will be one of several relievers in spring training attempting to earn a spot in the Indians bullpen that currently features five members in Cody Allen, Bryan Shaw, Scott Atchison, Nick Hagadone, and Marc Rzepczynski.
Their will be a host of non-roster invitees in competition that could emerge with one of the final spots including lefties Scott Downs, Nick Maronde, and Michael Roth along with righties Jeff Manship, Dustin Molleken, Bryan Price, Shaun Marcum and Anthony Swarzak.