Following an unsuccessful (68-94) season, the Cleveland Indians added new players and management to their roster. So, spring training will serve as a team-building experience.
The new players include:
- Nick Swisher, first baseman;
- Michael Bourn, center fielder;
- Mark Reynolds, first baseman;
- Brett Myers, pitcher;
- Daisuke Matsuzaka, pitcher;
- Jason Giambi, first baseman;
- Mike Aviles, shortstop;
- Drew Stubbs, center fielder.
Swisher, who signed a four-year, $56 million contract with the Indians, has already made a positive impression with his new teammates.
“…when you get to know him on a personal level, he’s genuine. He’s true. That’s him,” Chris Perez, relief pitcher for the Indians, said in an article on ESPN.com. “He brings that energy every single day. We didn’t have that in the second half last year.”
The Indians new manager, Terry Francona, shares Perez’s optimism.
“I understood before we got into this what may be ahead of us,” said Francona in an article on MLB.com. “It doesn’t scare me. I welcome the challenge.”
And the team’s first challenge is rapidly approaching.
The Indians, who finished fourth in the AL Central last year, face the Cincinnati Reds for their first spring training game on Feb. 22 at Goodyear Ballpark in Goodyear, Ariz.