The ISWEC (inertial sea wave energy converter) is presented, its control problems are stated, and an optimal control strategy is introduced. As the aim of the device is energy conversion, the mean absorbed power by ISWEC is calculated for a plane 2D irregular sea state. The response of the WEC (wave energy converter) is driven by the sea-surface elevation, which is modeled by a stationary and homogeneous zero mean Gaussian stochastic process. System equations are linearized thus simplifying the numerical model of the device. The resulting response is obtained as the output of the coupled mechanic-hydrodynamic model of the device. A stochastic suboptimal controller, derived from optimal control theory, is defined and applied to ISWEC. Results of this approach have been compared with the ones obtained with a linear spring-damper controller, highlighting the capability to obtain a higher value of mean extracted power despite higher power peaks.