UPDATE: Ken Rosenthal is reporting the Tigers are signing Gerald Laird to a one-year deal, pending a physical.
The Detroit Tigers are nearing a deal with a catcher, according to Ken Rosenthal via Twitter. He says that Kelly Shoppach is one of their targets. The Tigers are essentially looking for someone to back up Alex Avila, their starting catcher. Victor Martinez, their DH, is considered their 3rd catcher and Detroit would prefer to avoid the wear and tear on his knees.
However, Tigers beat reporter Jason Beck says, "if
Tigers are close to a deal for a backup catcher, it is not with Kelly Shoppach."
The other potential candidates to back up Avila while keeping Martinez in the lineup include Jose Molina, Matt Treanor, Gerald Laird, and Ramon Castro according to a Jon Paul Morosi tweet from last week.
And as I'm typing this out, Morosi is reporting via twitter that Laird is the Tigers' top choice. Gerald Laird, 32, played for Texas from 2003-2008 and had a previous stop in Detroit from 2009-2010 before landing in St. Louis last year.