D-backs add catcher Laird on Minor League deal

Veteran to compete for roster spot at spring camp

D-backs add catcher Laird on Minor League deal

PHOENIX -- The D-backs signed veteran free-agent catcher Gerald Laird to a Minor League contract with an invitation to Spring Training.

Laird, 35, spent the past two seasons as a backup catcher for the Braves, hitting .204 in 167 plate appearances in 2014.

Over his 12-year big league career, which also includes stops in Texas, Detroit and St. Louis, Laird has compiled a .244 batting average.

The D-backs are looking to bolster their catching depth after dealing veteran Miguel Montero during the Winter Meetings in December. Tuffy Gosewisch and Oscar Hernandez are the only catchers on Arizona's 40-man roster.

Gosewisch served as Montero's backup last season, while Hernandez was selected in the Rule 5 Draft in December after playing in the Class A Midwest League for the Rays last year.

Laird is the sixth non-roster catcher to receive an invite to big league camp, joining Blake Lalli, Peter O'Brien, Jordan Pacheco, Matt Pagnozzi and Mark Thomas.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.