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Atlanta Braves Make Deal Official After Gerald Laird Passes Physical

November 17th, 2012 at 9:28 AM
By Cody Fields

The Atlanta Braves officially announced on Friday that Gerald Laird had passed his physical and will serve as the Braves' backup catcher.

The contract is for two years, though the monetary implications have not been disclosed as yet.

Laird will be also be tasked with the starting catcher duties for the first month of the season as Brian McCann rehabs from shoulder surgery. The territory is familiar to Laird; he started eight of the Detroit Tigers' final 17 games in their run to clinch the AL Central and started six of their 13 playoff games.

In 63 games with Detroit last season, Laird hit .282 with two homers while backing up Alex Avila. The 32-year-old has a reputation of being a clubhouse leader with the ability to handle a pitching staff well.

The move by the Braves was necessitated by David Ross signing a two-year, $6.2 million deal with the Boston Red Sox last week, leaving a gaping need for a backup catcher.

Laird had spent three of the past four seasons with Detroit, making a stop with the St. Louis Cardinals to win the 2011 World Series. He made his Major League debut in 2003 and spent his first six seasons with the Texas Rangers.

Tags: Atlanta, Atlanta Braves, Gerald Laird, MLB

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