From this time last year, there was little to no doubt that Nick Swisher was a goner. People close to Swisher knew he would not return to the Yankees. Swisher, for his part, would never admit it -- at least, not to me.
Perhaps he held out hope that he could finally have a great October and change the Yankees' thoughts in how he fit -- or didn't fit, really -- into the $189M mandate.
His fall in the eyes of the fans was a little more surprising, even with his playoff failures. He did have a ring and the fans seemed to love his act, which made him one of the most popular Yankee, non-Legends Division.
In the playoffs, though, the perception of his enthusiasm, his, "I'm another Bleacher Creature" went up in smoke. He actually became hated when he said he prefered a hug instead of boos.
“It hurts," Swisher said during the ALCS. "Sometimes I’m a sensitive guy and some of the things people say, they get under your skin a little bit.”
So did his experience change Swisher? It doesn't sound like it, judging by how he spoke about the Indians' home opener vs. the Yankees today.
"Oh, man, that's going to be the jam," Swisher said on Sunday, according to MLB.com. "How much fun is that going to be? I mean, Opening Day sold out in six minutes? I think it's great, man. This city is so excited for us this year. There's a buzz in the 216 [Cleveland area code], man, and we're super excited to get back there."
QUESTION: When Swisher returns to the Bronx, will you cheer him or boo him?