Former Detroit Tigers backup catcher Gerald Laird signed a two-year deal with the Atlanta Braves on Thursday. The Braves have not made an official announcement and the terms of the contract were not revealed.
Laird, 32, spent three of the past four seasons in Detroit as the backup catcher. Laird is thought of as a defensive catcher who is good with handling a pitching staff, but he can get it done in the batter's box as well. Last season he hit .282 with a .710 OPS in 63 games for the Tigers. Laird started in six of Detroit's 13 postseason games, but only got one hit in the playoffs.
In Atlanta, Laird will replace David Ross, who signed a two-year, $6.2 million contract with the Boston Red Sox this offseason. With starting catcher Brian McCann slated to miss the first few weeks of the season to recover from shoulder surgery, Laird will serve as the Braves starting catcher for most of April.