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Issue Date: January 2014 Issue


Most Interesting People 2014: Nick Swisher

Nick Swisher

CLEVELAND INDIANS OUTFIELDER AND FIRST BASEMAN, 33

Why he's interesting: Swisher, a new addition to the Cleveland Indians in 2013, was happy to return home. Originally from Columbus, the always-grinning Swisher played collegiate baseball at the Ohio State University before being drafted by the Oakland A's. His Brohio movement brought teammates and fans together last season, carrying the Indians to the playoffs for the first time since 2007.

Home Run: Swisher played for the New York Yankees from 2009 to 2012, winning a World Series championship with the team in '09. After declining a one-year contract offer from New York, he signed with the Indians. But it wasn't strictly a baseball move. "My wife, [actress JoAnna Garcia], and I wanted a place that we were going to love and a place that we were going to be wanted. It was a family decision, and we know we made the right one."

Baby Talk: Swisher and Garcia's first child was born in April in Cleveland. "That is crazy. Never in a million years did I ever think I'd have a child born in Cleveland. She's born in the 216! She's a Clevelander, through and through."

Starring Role: Swisher and Garcia starred in separate episodes of hit TV show How I Met Your Mother during the fifth season. Swisher played himself, but still worked with his wife on running lines. "I didn't want to be the guy who went on set and screwed everything up. I'd wake her up in the middle of the night and say, 'Hey, should I read this line this way or this way?' She's like, 'Just keep it simple.' "

O-H-I-O!: Since being in Cleveland, Swisher has gotten plenty of O-H-I-O chants, but he says the weirdest place was in a movie theater. "I was sitting with my wife and somebody just busted right out in the front row. But hey, did I give it back? Absolutely!"

All Good, Bro: "Brohio was a play off of me saying 'bro' all the time. That turned into something major and brought Ohio together — made it cool again. I've sent Brohio shirts all over the country."

Sure Thing: In the book Moneyball, about new ways to scout baseball players, Swisher was one of the few prospects that the new-school statisticians and old-school scouts agreed would be a good player. The 2003 book also gave him some unexpected popularity. "I'll never forget, we were in [Double-A] and instead of signing baseball cards we're signing books." Although Swisher wasn't portrayed in the 2011 movie version of the book, he has an idea on who could have played him. "I would have played myself. Who's better at being me than me?"

After Baseball: "I'm kind of digging this Mr. Mom stuff right now. But when it's all said and done, I'm going to do something because I am way too hyper to sit at home all day."


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