Who is That Guy – Anthony Swarzak

Anthony Swarzak touched the lives of baseball fans on Saturday night when he went     7 1/3 hitless innings, out of nowhere, for the Twins in his 14th Major League start.  Swarzak seemed like a career Minor Leaguer, but at 25 and after 66 starts at Triple-A Rochester, including 22 last year and parts of four seasons in Triple-A, Swarzak finally made good on his opportunity.

Swarzak was a 2nd round pick in the 2004 MLB Draft and was ranked in the top 100 prospects by Baseball America in 2006, albeit as number 100.  He hit a snag in his development on April 20, 2007, when he was suspended for 50 games for testing positive for a “drug of abuse,” clearly not steroids.  It threw off his development and could have ended his career, but he battled through it and reached the Majors for a 2nd time this season after spending all of last year in Triple-A.

Swarzak’s numbers have never been eye-catching.  He seems like an inning-eating type, possibly a long reliever long-term.  His numbers really took a hit in 2010, as he went 5-12 with a 6.21 ERA in Triple-A.  He isn’t someone to take seriously in fantasy leagues, even AL-only leagues, but you have to appreciate someone who has overcome a mistake to reach the highest level.


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