Indians sign INF David Adams to big-league contract

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The former Yankees prospect joins Cleveland as a potential bench bat.

The Cleveland Indians have signed free-agent infielder David Adams to a major-league contract, the team has announced.

Adams, 26, got his first taste of big-league action in 2013, racking up 153 plate appearances as a utility infielder for the Yankees. The former third-round pick would have gotten a call-up much sooner but was derailed by a serious ankle injury in 2010 that not only limited him to 68 games in a two-season span, but also famously killed the trade that would've sent Cliff Lee to the Yankees.

Adams' first go against big-league pitching didn't go very well -- he hit just .193/.252/.286 with two home runs -- but his solid numbers in the minors suggest that he should perform better in the bigs once he adjusts to the superior pitching. While Adams' power numbers have declined as he's climbed the minor-league ladder, his stellar on-base ability has held steady -- .366 OBP at Triple-A last year -- which should make him a valuable asset for the Tribe off the bench.

Adams is a second baseman by trade, but he's gotten significant playing time at third base in the last year. Both Jason Kipnis (2B) and Lonnie Chisenhall (3B) hit from the left side of the plate, so Adams should make a nice alternative against left-handed pitching on days when they need a rest and the club's other righty utility guy, Ryan Raburn, is in the outfield.

Adams has a minor-league option left, so Cleveland could potentially bump him off the roster at some point next season without having to expose him to waivers. The Indians' 40-man roster is now full.

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