There aren’t a lot of hard-hitting questions to ask Nick Swisher these days. His everyday status is secure, he’s coming off his first all-star season, his personal life seems picture perfect and tonight he’s receiving a Thurman Munson Award for his off-the-field contributions.
It’s good to be Swish.
As for his team, Swisher – as you might expect – said he’s confident the Yankees will sort out their pitching concerns between now and Opening Day. Cliff Lee went elsewhere, Andy Pettitte might retire, and there’s not much the Yankees can or could do about either.
“It just didn’t work out for us. Let’s move on,” he said. “… We’ve got an amazing lineup, top to bottom. We just want to go out there and prove that we’re as good as we think we are.”
Of course, Swisher was asked to chime in on various topics.
On Pettitte’s future…
“This is my whole opinion on it. I love Andy Pettitte more than anything, man. Not only as a player but as a person as well. I think that he’s done so much for this game, so much for the New York Yankee organization. I don’t know what it’s like to have kids – I haven’t been fortunate enough yet – but I know that he misses his family. In my opinion, if he chooses to ride of into the sunset, he’s definitely earned that. We would love to have him back, but he’s going to go, he’s going with glory.”
On Rafael Soriano…
“I think he just takes a whole inning off of a game. Him and Mo in the pen, it turns it into a seven-inning game. Not only that, on top of the great pitchers I think we have in the pen, we’re shortening the game to five, six innings. For us, we’ve got to feel good about that spot.”
On the Red Sox improvement…
“I think that’s great. I think it’s going to be that same rivalry again just like it is every (year). Everybody’s making changes. So are we. I think the changes we’ve made are for the better. I’m just excited to get it going… I kind of put that (analysis) in your guy’s hands. We just have to go out there and play every day.”
On his offseason…
“Exact same thing I did last year. I’m on a different eating regiment now, which I don’t like as much, but it’s fun. The offseason is a good time for me. I get to spend time with my wife. I get to relax, not think about the stuff you worry about during the season. You know that first time you step on the field in spring training, you know that it’s going to be a long season. We’re excited for that. Last year, obviously we didn’t get to where we wanted to, but that World Series was right there within our grasp. Hopefully we can get back to that same spot again.”
And, because Swisher’s a good sport about things like this, we couldn’t help but ask – after his one inning on the mound two years ago – whether he might be able to fill a spot in the Yankees patchwork rotation.
“I just don’t think the body is going to hold up, you know what I mean?” he said. “I’m more of an everyday guy.”
I know what you mean, Swish. I know what you mean.
* Before I left for the Munson dinner, I wrote a quick blog post about Swisher being honored tonight. Just realized that post never went live for some reason. Anyway, if that caused any confusion, I apologize. Initially I didn’t mention the Munson dinner in this post because I thought I’d already mentioned it. Anyway, sorry about that.
I’m hoping the AP eventually moves a picture a little better than the one from my cell phone