The Cubs have signed catcher David Ross to a two-year, $5 million contract, according to a report from Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com. Reports circulated early Friday afternoon that Ross had agreed to terms with the Padres, but he is heading to Chicago after drawing interest from multiple teams this winter.
Ross was said to be deciding between the Padres, Red Sox and Cubs earlier this week, but San Diego's additions of Derek Norris and Tim Federowicz paired with the Red Sox' acquisition of Ryan Hanigan made the Cubs seem like a likely destination. Ross will be reunited with ex-teammate Jon Lester with the Cubs, and follows Ryan Lavarnway to the North Side as the second ex-Red Sox catcher to join the Cubs on Friday.
Ross will likely serve as the primary backup behind Miguel Montero, with Welington Castillo likely being traded before the start of spring training. The Cubs have worked to overhaul some of their roster this winter, and the additions of Montero and Ross behind the plate are aimed to improve production from the backstop position.
Ross, 37, also drew interest from the Diamondbacks and Braves this offseason. He hit just .184/.260/.368 with seven home runs last season for the Red Sox, but is known as one of the best clubhouse leaders in the game and was an integral part of Boston's World Series championship in 2013.