Paul Hoynes has the contract details:
Breakdown on Swisher's deal: $11 million 2013; $15 mill 2014, $15 mill 2015; $15 mill 2016 and vesting option $14 mill for 2017. #indians.— paul hoynes (@hoynsie) December 23, 2012
This backloading means that (assuming a theoretical $75M payroll) the Indians have about $9-10M to spend on a starting pitcher or another position player. Also keep in mind that the money from the new national TV deal kicks in next season, plus whatever extra money comes from a possible sale of STO.
This information conflicts with earlier reports saying that Swisher's vesting 2017 option is easily obtainable:
Swisher's $14 mil option for 2017 kicks in if he gets 550 plate appearances and passes physical at end of the 2016 season. #indians.— paul hoynes (@hoynsie) December 23, 2012
550 Plate Appearances isn't something that I'd classify as easy to get, especially from a 35-year-old position player. If he would go on the 15-day DL, that option would be in serious jeopardy, as he'd lose approximately 60 Plate Appearances (he had 624 in 2012). If he missed a month, the vesting option would almost certainly not trigger. In other words, the option would trigger only if Swisher started roughly 120 games.